Heather Johns on track to retain fours title

Last updated 05:00 08/01/2014

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Paritutu's Heather Johns is on course to claim back-to-back titles in the women's fours at the New Zealand bowls championships in Dunedin.

Yesterday Johns and her team of Cathy Andrews, Val Keightley and Debbie Smith beat two strong teams and the weather to secure their place in today's semifinals.

While most games remained incomplete overnight, because of the heavy rain, Johns had the satisfaction of a completed quarterfinal behind her.

Playing Carlton Cornwall's Karen Hema in the quarterfinals, Johns trailed by five shots with six ends remaining. But with Smith leading well, the Paritutu side clawed back into the game, edging ahead by one point playing the last end.

On the last, Hema marginally moved the jack away from her side's bowl to give Paritutu the shot and the match.

In the morning round, Johns' side defeated Leanne Chinery's Birkenhead team, that included Reen Stratford, 18-10.

In the semifinals, Johns meets Sue Hodges (Outram). Hodges is the only side to have beaten Johns, 22-14, in the third qualifying game.

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