SCOTLAND’S elite descend on Abbeyview this week as the Dunfermline-based club hosts this season’s Men’s International Series.

As always, East Lothian are well represented in the Scotland ranks.

Alex Marshall returns from Australia for the event and is joined by Billy Mellors, Scott Kennedy and the returning Derek Oliver.

The Scottish rinks begin their campaign at 3pm today (Thursday) against Ireland before facing Wales on Friday and England on Saturday.

It was a case of so near yet so far for the ladies’ international squad at Abbeyview last weekend.

Preceding the British Isles series in Dunfermline, the ladies headed into the series as red-hot favourites and were looking to claim their third consecutive Clara John Trophy.

Session one yielded a massive 143-88 win to set the host nation’s stall out for the weekend.

A similarly comfortable 153-86 win against Wales would mean they would meet the ‘Auld Enemy’ in a Sunday afternoon shootout for glory.

With a superior shot difference, the Scots knew that a draw would be enough to secure the series.

The ladies were in no mood for a close finish, racing to a 22-2 lead after just two ends, but a shift in the scoring emphasis by end 13 saw England pass Scotland 76-66.

An unbelievable scoring period for Scotland saw them rally 26 shots to four and claim the initiative 101-83 at end 16.

In a stunning finish, England outscored Scotland 26-13 to head into end 21 trailing by five shots. A magnificent count of seven unanswered shots across the carpet left Scotland and the home crowd stunned as England claimed a memorable 116-114 win and won the Clara John Trophy for the first time since the 2019/20 season.

East Lothian’s Beth Riva, skipped by the experienced Margaret Ketham, had three wins from three in the series.

Meanwhile, East Lothian future star Logan Kennedy continues his path to the very top of Scottish bowls.

After claiming the Scottish Masters title at West Lothian Indoor Bowling Club earlier in the season, coupled with the retention of the Scottish Top 6, the youngster made it a hat-trick of titles as he paired up with Lennon Rafferty at the Scottish Youth Pairs at the weekend at Whiteinch Bowling Club.

The two East Lothian youngsters continued their morning form, comfortably securing wins throughout the day before claiming the title in the afternoon.

Elsewhere, the popular Jock Brodie tournament reached its finale in East Lothian at the weekend.

Host club East Lothian tackled Perth and Midlothian faced down the challenge of West Lothian in the other semi-final, both neighbours looking for a place in this season’s showpiece final.

In a close opening exchange, there was little to split any of the teams across the carpet.

Perth would be the first movers of the afternoon, clinching a trio of high scoring ends (4, 5, 5) to swing the tie in their favour and by end 12 they looked to be out of sight.

Andy Burt, recognising that the match was slipping, started employing more aggressive tactics, scoring back-to-back counts of five to give East Lothian the opportunity to bring the tie back within touching distance.

However, it would be the experienced old heads of Perth that saw out a 6-2 win over East Lothian.

Midlothian claimed the final chance to fight it out for end-of-season honours, a win on rink four and a draw on rink six enough for them to claim the win on aggregate shots by just five.

The legendary figure of Jock Brodie was present throughout the day following a short illness; it is hoped he will once again be in attendance on the final day and have a hand in the distribution of the prizes.