Auckland and Central Otago Claim 2022 Intercentre Honours

October 17, 2022

A near perfect run of results has seen Auckland take out the 2022 National Intercentre men's title, while for the Central Otago ladies, it will be a weekend they will never forget after taking out their maiden intercentre title since the event's inception.

Held at the Browns Bay Bowling Club in the North Harbour, six regional qualifiers arrived at the national finals in a bid to find last season's intercentre champions - following significant COVID-19 travel restrictions and regulations affecting play, back in March.

At the completion of the regional qualifying, the successful men's teams were from Auckland, Bay of Plenty, Hawkes Bay, Wellington, Marlborough and reigning champions Southland, while the women's line-ups included North Harbour, Thames Valley, Gisborne-East Coast, Wellington, Central Otago and Nelson, also back to defend their title.

The national finals' format saw a head to head section draw, with match points awarded to the winning centre for the overall result, and game points up for grabs in each individual fixture. The rotational eighth person was also in play, with team managers able to re-select their seven at the beginning of each round.

After three rounds on day one, the women's action saw Wellington emerge as overnight leaders, tallying a perfect six match points  - defeating North Harbour, Gisborne-East Coast and Central Otago. In the men's field, nothing could separate Auckland and Wellington, both centres registering six match points and running equal on game points also.

Day two saw the momentum continue, with both Auckland and Wellington handling business opposite the Bay of Plenty and Hawkes Bay respectively, setting up a blockbuster final round clash in what eventuated as effectively the men's final.

The final round saw the Wellington pairing romp home against Auckland's Tony Grantham and Jamie Hill, while the Auckland fours levelled the scoring with an emphatic win opposite the Ben King skipped Wellington quartet, 18-11.

That meant all eyes turned to Auckland's Commonwealth Games representative Mike Galloway up against promising Blackjack Seamus Curtin in a first to 25 shootout. Trading shot for shot throughout the fixture, the match came down to the wire, with Galloway able to hold his nerve for the win, 25-24 - giving Auckland the overall win and rounding out his campaign unbeaten.

Adding to the overall success, the Auckland four of Adam Wishnoski, Aiden Takarua, Martin Dixon and Nick Thompson dropped only one game from five, while Hill and Grantham secured an important three wins and a draw.

Meanwhile, calculators were out in force at the completion of the final bowl in the women's fixtures, with Central Otago holding tough to defeat Thames Valley and Gisborne-East Coast, while a clean-sweep round saw Nelson thump Wellington and bring the scores level with one round left to play after the opening round on Sunday.

With a win to the Thames Valley pairing and a win to the Wellington four, all attention turned to Wellington's Lisa White in the singles. As tension filled the air, White held shot and subsequently the silverware for her centre - though a pin-point direct last-bowl drive removed her bowl and secured the memorable win for the Central Otago contingent.

The win marked the first time Central Otago has won the national intercentre, claiming eight match points to Wellington's six. In other results, a strong finish saw Nelson secure third place, while for the men, Marlborough got the nod for third place ahead of Hawkes Bay on shots differential.

The 2023 National Intercentre will revert back to its open format again next year, held in Christchurch between 16-19 March.

The winning 2022 National Intercentre teams are:



Mike Galloway, Jamie Hill, Tony Grantham, Adam Wishnoski, Aiden Takarua, Martin Dixon, Nick Thomspon, Mike Bradshaw. Manager: John Ross



Central Otago

Christine Buchanan, Debbie Jackson, Debra Lloyd, Jane Anderson, Linley O'Callaghan, Liz Tomlins, Pam Walker, Yvonne McCutcheon. Manager: Neil Buchanan.