The Men’s Pairs quarter finalists and Women’s Singles semi-finalists have been found at the Summerset National Championships as day five of the open competition concluded throughout Auckland city.
Hosted by the Howick and Carlton Cornwall clubs respectively, star names had their title run halted early with the likes of last year’s quarter-finalists Seamus Curtin and Sheldon Bagrie-Howley, the fancied pairing of Shannon McIlroy and Justin Goodwin, Bowls3Five champions Aiden Takarua and Alex Reed, Southland’s Caleb Hope and Craig Tinker and the well-performed Rarotongan pairing of Aidan Zittersteijn and Adoni Wichman-Rairoa – all failing to progress past their first knock-out fixture.
The surprise encounter of the day saw dual world champion Gary Lawson, who was targeting a third successive win with three different leads, crash out to two-time semi-finalists Karl Garrett and Colin Gawith, despite Lawson and former international Jamie Hill dishing out two thumping losses to Zittersteijn and Papatoetoe’s George Stanisich, 29-0 and 25-2 and appearing in untouchable form.
In other results, the composite pairing of Richard Hocking and Lloyd Fitness prove a serious contender going forward, dispatching three top-sides to earn themselves a place up against Garrett and Gawith on Monday.
Section three’s action saw the Victoria side of Ray Martin and Richard Corry edge a thrilling solo-point encounter opposite the Australian-based former internationals Richard Girvan and Chris Le Lievre, with Martin’s determination paying dividends to collect a final end four-count and win an extra end to keep their title hopes alive.
Martin will now take on the impressive mash-up combination of two former champion skips, with 1985 victor Maurice Symes teaming alongside 2014 champion Tony Grantham to comprise a formidable combination.
Across rinks, the top half of the draw will see the consistent Mangere pairing of Chris Lowe and Auckland representative Jordan King take on fellow Aucklanders in the form of Pt Chevalier’s John Petelo and Steve Hoeft, while North Harbour duo Adam Haywood and Brent Turner will look to temper the sizzling form of 2017 National Singles champion Dean Elgar and his composite lead Gerry O’Sullivan.
Meanwhile, fellow 2017 National Singles winner Selina Goddard has moved within two wins of lifting the silverware on her home greens, though will face a tough assignment in the form of Te Rangi’s Sarah Scott, who has equally impressed in her run up to the final four.
The other semi-final will see Stoke Thunder’s Kirsten Edwards, a former World Bowls representative, go up against Hinuera’s Debbie White in what should be a spectacular match-up on Monday morning, with White hoping to build on her consistent post-section showing from previous championships.
Beaten quarter-finalists were Te Rangi’s Bronwyn Stevens, former Blackjack Tayla Bruce, Orewa’s Lisa Parlane and Balmoral’s Chelsea Farley, while former international Wendy Jensen once again turned heads as she dispatched pre-tournament front runner Val Smith, 21-14 in the first round of post-section. Jensen continued her winning ways against Balmoral’s Tessa Farley before ending her run at the hands of Bruce – Bruce edging a 21-19 thriller.
Day six will now work to whittle the remaining contenders down to the Grand Finale in each discipline, with players edging ever so closer to national honours.