Gold & Black donning the New Zealand Open Finals Green
We had an impressive 6 Carlton Cornwall representatives out on the finals rink competing for 4 NZ Open titles.
On Friday 16th February for the very first time in the 11 year history of The Trusts New Zealand Open the disable pairs final was played on the TV rink at Blockhouse Bay Bowls. Norman Earnshaw and David Stallard (with Director Peter Blick) took on Peter Whiting and Jill Brierley in a thrilling final. Completing the 11th end both teams were back to the beginning with a 9 all score. With solid final ends from Earnshaw, Stallard and director Blick the score shot away to a 17-9 lead after the 14th end where the game was conceded.
On Saturday 17th February we had our consistent Carlton reps Linda Ralph and Karen Hema with team mate Anne Bateman into their first final, the Hunter Bowls Women’s Triples Final against the tidy triples team of Esther Eu, Helen Murray and Sheila Putu. As expected, this game left all the spectators (and no doubt the players) on the edge of their seats. Our ladies took off to a steady lead being 10-4 in front after 7 ends but Eu’s team fought hard for shots and jumped to a 12-10 lead. From the 10th – 17th end it was bowl for bowl with each team only managing to score 1 or 2 shots each end, resulting in a 16 all tie going into the last end of the game. With Anne Bateman playing a crowd pleasing shot with her 2nd bowl, Eu was not able to respond with her last bowl and the title went to Karen, Linda and Anne.
Sunday 18th March saw us with two chances to grab gold medals in the ladies and men’s pairs final. In the morning we had James Williams and Shane McGonagle VS Mike Galloway and Martin Dixon – two very talented teams. Our James Williams was the newest member to bowls from this group starting his bowls career in 2006. From the beginning Galloway and Dixon were dominating the scoreboard starting off with a 9-0 lead after three ends. James and Shane hopped on the scoreboard and pegged the score back to a 15-10 trail. Galloway and Dixon held the boys to 10 all the way to the 15th end and conceded the game on the 16th end 11-21. A great effort from them both.
Lastly we had Karen and Linda back on the TV rink in the women’s pairs final facing off against Catherine Bien and Ling Qu from St Heliers. Our two ladies were cool, calm and collected as they held a steady lead against the St Heliers combo throughout the duration of the game. With an end result of 19-11 after 17 ends, the ladies convincingly collected their second gold medal for the weekend.
Also a special mention to Tony Garelja, Rob Ashton, Petar Sain, Graham Skellern, Max Hamilton, Karen de Jongh and Bev Crowe who made it to the quarterfinal stages in the NZ Open!
A huge achievement by all involved in this years Trusts New Zealand Open, Go Carlton!