|Photo © Malcolm McNeil / NZCA|
26 Jul 2020 – The Nicolson Trophy, considered the most prestigious "outdoors" trophy a club can win outside of a National Bonspiel, was played at Naseby Ice Rink on Monday 17 July.
Only four clubs compete in this event, and they must qualify by being one of the top two clubs for the season from each of the Idaburn and Naseby Curling Councils. This year's qualifiers were Kiwi and Ranfurly Curling Clubs representing Naseby Council, and the Alpine and Poolburn Curling Clubs from the Idaburn Council.
Each club puts up two rinks each, and each rink is drawn to play against a side from both of the other Council's clubs. They play one 21-end game in the morning and another in the afternoon.
In non-Bonspiel seasons, the winner is regarded as being the National champion, and qualifying for this event ranks these clubs as top 4 for the season.
"The ice was quite keen early on thanks to a minus 5 degree overnight frost," reported Poolburn curler and NZCA President Graham Sinnamon, "but unseasonable warm conditions mid-morning saw the ice sweat up."
"The afternoon conditions remained similar all match. Such conditions usually favour the Idaburn clubs, and this year was no exception."
"Poolburn Curling Club won all four of their matches, and with it the Nicolson Trophy for the fourth time in the last 10 years. Alpine were runners up with 3 wins, followed by Ranfurly third and Kiwi in fourth. My congratulations to all four clubs for achieving these results, and a special thank you to the Naseby Council for hosting this season's competition."