Hawke's Bay fencer on winning form
After winning the 2016 Golden Pliers title, fencing champion Shane Bouskill of Hawke's Bay declared he had had enough and was retiring.
But when son Tony, who came second last year, told his dad he had to compete this year so he could beat him, Bouskill decided to give it another go.
Giving it his all, Bouskill not only took out the 2017 Golden Pliers title but also teamed up with Tony to win the Silver Spades 2017 title – the first time the father-son duo have won this title and only the second father-son pair to etch their names in the history books.
"I didn't expect to come back this year but Tony said he wanted the chance to beat me.
"Now it looks like I will have to come back again next year so he can have another go at beating me."
Bouskill said he was "Proud to have competed with and win with his son".
"It's blood great actually. It is never a given that you will win so I was a bit nervous when the results were being announced."
Six pairs lined up on Friday morning for the Silver Spades doubles championship during which competitors had to build a 40m netting fence.
Commentator Craig Wiggin said it was interesting how the various pairs tackled the construction of the fence.
"It's the same fence but they all did it differently.
"In the end, there was less than one point difference between the top two."
The competition was as red-hot as expected in the race for the Silver Spades trophy as 2015 and 2016 winners Jeff Joines (Kapiti) and Mark Lambert (Bulls), who were hoping to make it three in a row had to settle for second place.
These two pairs have been neck and neck all season during the regional competitions, swapping wins and runner-up placings between them.
The Golden Pliers is a test of endurance and requires an eye for detail. It is the epitome of fencing competitions and represents the mana of the fencing industry.
Competitors had to build a 50m 9-wire post and batten fence. There is no halfway point to stop for lunch or a cuppa and with the intense physical and mental strength needed to compete the job and ensure the upmost quality, each competitor must keep themselves adequately hydrated and nourished during the competition. Any competitor who does not complete their fence in the 6.5 hours is effectively disqualified. It is gruelling and a gut-busting amount of stamina is required.
Again the competition was close with only four points separating the competitors and only two points separating defending champion Bouskill and Tim Stafford (Marton), who came second.
The Bill Schuler novice final for the six entrants from the heats that did not make it into the Golden Pliers singles championship, was won by Brody Channings (Hunterville), for the second year running.
1 Shane Bouskill
2 Tim Stafford
3 Tony Bouskill
4 Mark Lambert
5 Matt Jones
6 Jeff Joines
7 Jason Van Beers
8 Jack Richardson
1 Shane Bouskill and Tony Bouskill
2 Jeff Joines and Mark Lambert
3 Matt Jones and Tim Stafford
4 Jason Van Beers and Jack Richardson
5 Dan Hunt and Daniel Kirk
6 Haydon Walton and Craig Smith
1 Brody Channings
2 Cameron Bevan
3 Daniel Kirk
4 Dan Hunt
5 Sam Burton
6 Tim Dingle
First Year entrant
Second Year entrant
Silver Spades Cadets
Jonty Wilson and Cody McKinder from Smedley Station.
Nick Leifting Trophy