Hope for last test as series falls to Aussies

JONATHAN MCKEOWN
Last updated 13:00 08/02/2013

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Australia have won the trans-Tasman croquet test series with an 8-3 victory over New Zealand in the second test at Nelson Hinemoa Croquet Club yesterday.

Having won the first test 8-4 on Tuesday, Australia now have an unassailable lead in the three two-day test match series.

Australia carried a 3-1 lead into the fourth day following play in the doubles section, adding to their margin with a 5-2 scoreline in the singles.

Australian captain Kevin Beard beat his Kiwi counterpart Aaron Westerby of Auckland before Australian world No 3 Robert Fletcher proved too strong for Wairarapa's Dave Wickham.

Wellington's Harps Tahurangi was beaten by Stephen Forster, Claire Bassett accounted for Alison Robinson and Australia took five quick points when Tricia Devlin topped Kiwi young gun Laura Whittaker.

New Zealand got on the board through Cantabrian Jenny Clarke when she overcame women's world championship runner-up Alison Sharpe. Michael Wright of Wellington beat Malcolm Fletcher in New Zealand's other victory while Canterbury's Jane McIntyre shared her match with Rosie Graham.

The trans-Tasman tournament has been played on 10 occasions since 1991, with New Zealand winning seven and Australia picking up their third series win.

The third and final test was due to start with the doubles this morning and conclude with singles action on Saturday. Spectators are welcome to attend both days, with some live commentary provided at the Hinemoa club lawns across from Anzac Park.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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