NZ women's triple take silver at world champs
New Zealand's quest for an elusive gold medal at the bowls world championships has been thwarted by an Australian combination yet again with the women's triple being outclassed 21-9 in today's title decider in Adelaide.
Lisa White, Jan Khan and Mandy Boyd became the third Black Jacks combination to falter against the hosts as New Zealand had to be content with a second silver medal.
Their male counterparts - Tony Grantham, Matt Gallop and Ali Forsyth - the first Kiwis to be undermined by their trans-Tasman rivals in the medal rounds were confined to bronze after bowing out in the semifinal stage on Thursday.
But world championship debutants White, Boys and the ultra-experienced Khan at least went one better by making the gold medal showdown at the Lockleys club.
They made a promising start against Natasha Van Eldik, Lynsey Armitage and Karen Murphy but after gleaning five shots from the fourth and fifth ends to lead 7-5, the Australians dictated play.
A five on the ninth end proved the pivotal moment as the Australians surged to a 14-7 lead and from then on they were never in danger.
Boyd tried to ensure the contest went the scheduled 15 ends but when her last bowl on the 14th could not disrupt Australia's three shots the gap was insurmountable.
Khan, a triples bronze medallist when the championships were last held in Christchurch in 2008, paid credit to the Australians and also to her lead White and Boyd, the skip.
"It was a wonderful effort to get to a final with two newbies. It's their first world championships and to go home with a silver medal, that's just a tremendous effort," she said.
"We knew the Aussies were a formidable team, they hit their straps early and played some big bowls. We never said die but they were too good for us."
Val Smith and Jo Edwards also relinquished their pairs crown to Australia on Thursday but Smith has an opportunity to avenge that defeat to Kelsey Cottrell and Rebecca Quail tomorrow when she strives to defend her singles title against Murphy.
In the remaining men's singles semifinal tomorrow morning Shannon McIlroy takes on Australia's Leif Selby for a berth in the championship-closing tussle with Canadian Ryan Bester.