Boyd continues fours supremacy

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Leigh Griffin and Mandy Boyd hold the women’s fours shield, flanked by team-mates Angela Boyd and Kirsten Edwards and their fellow medallists.

Mandy Boyd has claimed a remarkable sixth national fours title in 11 years.

The former Blackjack has held on to beat defending champion Sandra Keith 18-16 in the women’s final at the Summerset National Fours at Alexandra Bowling Club in Central Otago.

Boyd, Kirsten Edwards, Leigh Griffin and Angela Boyd withstood a late rally from Keith, Clare Hendra, Selina Smith and Tayla Bruce after leading 18-8 with four ends to play.

“It was a tricky old situation we were in because we did get a bit of a lead there and at that point it becomes play the card and don’t drop numbers,” Mandy Boyd said.

“Then I guess we dropped a couple and it got a bit close for comfort obviously but pleased to hold on to that for sure.”

Boyd played down her role in the team’s success.

“Angela was setting us up really well from the start most ends which was really good and Leigh was backing her up as well.

“I didn’t play many bowls in that game. I just tried to talk to the girls and do what I could on and it just shows how [with a] good team effort you only have to sort of pluck one out every now and then.”

Together the Boyd sisters and Griffin and Edwards also won the national fours in 2016 and 2019.

“We all know each other so well now,” Mandy Boyd said.

“Kirsten and I can sort of read each other’s minds and I trust completely what she says.”

It is the fifth national title for Kirsten’s mum Leigh Griffin, giving her a gold star.

“That was what we were going for out there. She’s done really well, she’s a legend,” Boyd said.

Maurice Symes ensured a second national title wouldn’t be returning to Mandy Boyd’s household today, after coming from behind to beat Mike Kernaghan 20-19 in the men’s fours final.

Boyd’s partner Lance Pascoe, playing three for Kernaghan, was forced to settle for the silver medal for the second straight year.

Cruelly it is the third straight year Kernaghan has finished runner-up in the men’s fours, with all finals decided by just one shot.

Symes had his number three John Gray to thank after he drew two shots on the 18th and final end, when his quartet trailed by a shot.

“One of the best feelings I’ve had in my life,” Symes said.

“I just want to say a big thank you to the team and to our opposition, Michael and his boys are a great opposition and great competitors and we’ve just done exceptionally well.”

Symes, Gray, Steve Beel and Craig MacDonell had led 16-9 before Kernaghan clawed themselves back into the final and into a one shot lead with an end to play.

“I think the pressure started to get to the team and then what happened was they came on.”

“So it was a matter of just keeping the calm.”

And Gray did just that, securing them the men’s title.

Attentions will now turn to the Summerset National Mixed Pairs, which start in Central Otago tomorrow, with Mandy Boyd to play with Lance Pascoe in one of the combinations to watch.


Women’s semi-finals: Sandra Keith bt Dale Rayner 24-16 & Mandy Boyd bt Liz Witton 17-13.

Women’s final: Mandy Boyd bt Sandra Keith 18-16.

Men’s quarter-finals: Trevor Reader bt Michael Solomon 21-12, Mike Kernaghan bt Seamus Curtin 24-8, Maurice Symes bt Gary Lawson 17-12 & Brian Little bt Rob Ashton 19-16.

Men’s semi-finals: Mike Kernaghan bt Trevor Reader 18-16 & Maurice Symes bt Brian Little 24-13.

Men’s final: Maurice Symes bt Mike Kernaghan 20-19.