LEE Wall shines at the Cumberland Show

LEE Wall shone at the Cumberland Show, winning the 12 stones in such good style that John Richardson awarded him the Guinness Trophy for the best performance. He has not had the easiest of years because of injury in the football season, the serious illness of his father and the job uncertainty caused originally by the cathedral's decision to disband its team of masons. He has obviously made a good recovery from his injury and he put a beaming smile on the face of his father, who was watching from the ringside. In the semi-final with William Prudham, he crossed him high in the air and brought him down on the back of his neck for the most spectacular fall of the night. In the final with Alan Walton, he went down to a cross-click to lose the first fall and very nearly went the same way for the second. There was nothing wobbly about the decider, however. Walton struck with a back-heel, but Wall just leaned back and inside-hiped.

Before the men's wrestling began, some of the wrestlers who had performed so well in the European Championships in Sardinia were presented to the crowd. Two of them contested the 14 stones final. Joseph Robson of Kendal had won a gold medal in Sardinia in the 90kg section, but opponent Alan Jones had no medal. His excellent performance had been as team coach: analysing opponents, working out tactics and generating enthusiasm. Robson looked the likely winner on his performance in the earlier rounds, and after he won the first fall with a cross-buttock, but Jones struck back by trapping his foot for a deceptively simple fall. The decider was more lively with Robson lifting Jones high off the ground. Jones wriggled and thrashed in mid-air, making a horrible noise, slipped through Robson's arms and twisted for a notable victory.

In the all weights, Joe Threlfall started shakily against Alan Walton, but finished strongly against the under-18 years winner, Russell Housby, felling him first with a twist over the knee and then with a big twist.

Russell's aunt, Gill Housby, won the women's open event, felling "Ruth from Alston" in the final.

Written by © Roger Robson. Photographs by © Roger Robson, Julian Richardson or Linda Scott (May 4th 2011)

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