Canterbury women to the fore again

GRANT HASSALL
Last updated 05:00 25/02/2013

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Canterbury continued their terrific run in New Zealand women's bowls by winning the intercentre title in Auckland yesterday.

Canterbury beat defending champions Nelson two matches to one in the final.

Serena Matthews and Sandra Keith won the crucial pairs game against Amy McIlroy and Jo Edwards 21-17 in the final, with Canterbury's second win coming from Bev Morel's four.

The singles match was not completed since Canterbury could not be caught, although Nelson were accredited victory with Val Smith leading Jan Khan 22-20.

Matthews and Keith made a slow start, trailing McIlroy and Edwards 4-0 after three ends in the final. "It was only early days," Keith said afterwards. "Serena led well. It was never going to be easy against the quality of the players we were playing."

After eight ends the Canterbury duo had turned the score around to lead 12-4.

Nelson closed the margin to 12-9 and the contest was well and truly still alive with Canterbury up 17-15 with just four ends remaining. But Matthews and Keith cribbed the margin out to six shots playing the last end.

The dreadful run by the Southland women did not change on Saturday, with the side losing all six matches to end the tournament in last place.

❏ Dunedin won their 13th men's intercentre title when they beat Manawatu in a closely fought final.

Dunedin claimed the singles and the fours and while the pairs was uncompleted, that appeared to be heading Manawatu's way.

Michael Kernaghan was the outstanding individual in Dunedin's victory winning all eight games in the singles. His eighth win was over Ross Ellery, 25-19 in the final.

In the fours, Dunedin's Craig McCaw, Ross Brown, Regan Larkin and Kerry Becks sneaked home 12-11 over Manawatu's Cameron Nairne, Barry Wynks, Mark Noble and Pat Horgan.

In the pairs, Manawatu's Philip Skoglund Jr and Craig Gush led Dunedin's Mark Watt and Shaun Scott 12-9 with two ends to go when time was called.

The gallant run by Southland in the men's competition ended in the quarterfinals, when they went down to Manawatu two matches to one on Saturday afternoon.

After winning two matches from five in section play, Craig Merrilees scored a fine 25-21 win over Manawatu's Ross Ellery.

Stu Dickson's four of Graham Low, Steve Sanders and Lyall Spencer, however, were never in the hunt against Pat Horgan's team, losing 19-10. It meant that it all came down to the pairs games, where Glenn Milne and Ian Brown staged a good recovery to be level playing the last end against Philip Skoglund Jr and Craig Gush. However, Skoglund drew the shot and Manawatu won 15-14.

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Earlier, Dickson's four had produced a fine effort, beating the powerful Nelson unit and North Harbour. They finished with four wins. The pair had a win and a loss to end up with three victories.

- The Southland Times

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