Pascoe holds on unbeaten to claim title
Blaketown's Shane Pascoe has remained unbeaten to claim the Stoke Invitation singles bowls title.
The West Coast bowler led throughout Sunday's final to eventually beat United's Murray Scott 21-16 in the decider after Scott, also unbeaten heading into the final, had fought back at one stage to trail 18-16.
It was a satisfying result for Pascoe, the 31-year-old mine worker playing just his second tournament of the year and his first-ever Stoke event. "I don't play much any more, I just play in the odd [tournament].
"[Tournament organiser] Gary Watson asked me to play and I threw my name in," he said.
"I didn't expect to do as well as I did, but I'm quite happy with how things worked out really."
Despite his lack of recent competitive play, Pascoe said he just tried to remain calm in often testing situations.
"I was just consistent. I didn't get too panicked when things weren't going my own way. I just kept to my own game plan each game and took it all in my stride.
"When I had to score I scored, and when I was down, I just tried to make as few [errors] as I could so I didn't drop big numbers."
He agreed it was fitting that the only two unbeaten players should square off in the decider.
"It was a tough final. I just got off to a good start and Scotty fought back, but I always expected that but just held on at the end to claim it."
Pascoe had surged to an early 8-0 lead before Scott clawed his way back to 8-4. Pascoe again edged ahead at 11-4, prompting another fightback from Scott and another Pascoe surge to give him an 18-13 lead. Another three by Scott then narrowed the margin to just two shots.
"It always looked like he was going to win comfortably but then I fought back and it was 18-16," Scott said.
"On two consecutive ends, I was holding two threes and he drove the jack and killed it both times. And then he got three on the end immediately after those two to go out 21-16."
Pascoe topped his section with seven straight wins, before beating Canterbury's Roger Glendinning 21-19 in the quarterfinals, ahead of a 21-17 semifinal win over another Cantabrian, Kelvin Scott.
Murray Scott also advanced with a clean slate in section play, beating South Canterbury's Sean O'Neill 21-12 in the quarterfinals before beating Wellington's Lance Pascoe, Shane's cousin, 21-16 in their semifinal.
Dunedin's Kelvin Budge won the division 2 final with an 11-8 win over Marlborough's Sanjhe Prasad, while Marlborough's Warren Brown took out the division 3 title with an 11-8 win over Stoke's Russell Calder. Stoke's Jimmy Pugh beat his clubmate Brendan Hodgson 11-9 to win the division 4 title.
Stoke's Larry Sutherland won the Peter Shaw Trophy for the best-performing Stoke player on a count back from Allan Griffiths and John Haddock after all three were knocked out in the division two quarterfinals.
Last year's winner, Richard Collett, was unavailable because of work commitments. Stoke's New Zealand representative Shannon McIlroy was in Adelaide preparing for the world championships. Peter Hodson was also unavailable because of his involvement in the recent world champion of champions singles tournament in Cyprus, where he won bronze.
The Nelson Mail