Ed­wards, McIl­roy win cen­tre ti­tles

Nelson Mail - - SPORT - BOWLS

Good things have cer­tainly come in threes for United’s Black­jacks bowler Kirsten Ed­wards.

Not only did she cel­e­brate her 26th birth­day with vic­tory in the Bowls Nel­son women’s cham­pion of cham­pi­ons sin­gles fi­nal at Wake­field on Satur­day, but she also se­cured her gold star for her fifth Nel­son cen­tre ti­tle.

World men’s sin­gles cham­pion Shan­non McIl­roy also wrapped up the men’s cham­pion of cham­pi­ons ti­tle.

As Kirsten Grif­fin, Ed­wards was al­ready a gold star holder for the Welling­ton cen­tre prior to her move to Nel­son. How­ever, her even­tual 21-18 win over Stoke’s Mary Or­bell in Satur­day’s fi­nal in­volved plenty of hard work.

She’d had to come from 16-8 down in her first round match be­fore beat­ing promis­ing Wake­field player Linda Sis­ter­son 21-16.

Ed­wards had a slightly eas­ier time in the semi­fi­nals, beat­ing Ri­waka’s Bev Hunt, also a gold star holder, 21-7.

The fi­nal against Or­bell pro­duced some ex­cel­lent bowls, Ed­wards hold­ing the early lead un­til Or­bell tied up the con­test at 14-14 and again at 16-16. Or­bell even­tu­ally went ahead 18-16 but dropped the max­i­mum four shots to trail 20-18 be­fore Ed­wards scored the win­ning shot.

In the men’s com­pe­ti­tion, Stoke’s McIl­roy had to sur­vive a tough open­ing round con­test against United’s Mur­ray Scott be­fore even­tu­ally win­ning 21-17.

Scott had led 12-5 after 10 ends, but McIl­roy then scored 10 unan­swered points to hit the lead 15-12 and was never headed. Although he dropped a four on the 20th end, he held on for the win.

It was then plain sail­ing for McIl­roy, com­fort­ably beat­ing Maitai’s Bruno DeLorenzo 21-4, United’s Lex Quayle 21-6 and even­tu­ally Wake­fields’ Tony Eames 21-10 in the fi­nal. Eames had reached the fi­nal with wins over Ma­pua’s David Eng­land (21-8) and an im­pres­sive 21-15 win over Motueka’s Craig Fowler.

The cham­pion of cham­pi­ons men’s and women’s triples were also de­cided at Motueka on Sun­day, with Stoke’s Peter Hod­son, James Pugh and Dave Mer­ritt beat­ing Motueka’s Tony Fowler, Dave Cur­rie and Craig Fowler 16-8 for the men’s ti­tle.

Hod­son had reached the fi­nal with a 23-8 vic­tory over Nel­son’s Ge­orge Bar­bir and an­other com­fort­able win 21-7 over Po­hara’s Les Ham­brook. Fowler had beaten Maitai’s Len Ed­wards 20-7, United’s Mike Wil­son 19-2 and Tahu­nanui’s John Wil­lis­croft 24-4.

Stoke led through­out the fi­nal, hav­ing been 11-2 up after nine of the re­quired 15 ends.

The women’s ti­tle went to the lo­cal Motueka team of Mar­cia Dun­can, Rae Inglis and He­len Dou­glas who beat Rich­mond’s Mon­ica Kennedy, Jeanette Paul­ing and He­len White 13-11 in a very tight match.

Motueka also had a tight 14-13 semi­fi­nal win over Wake­field’s Mar­garet Eames, hav­ing ac­counted for Ri­waka’s Bev Hunt 16-10 in the first round. Kennedy had had a close 15-13 win over Stoke’s Les­ley Mor­ris be­fore beat­ing Ngawhatu’s Jill Gould­ing 17-8 in the semi­fi­nal.

PHOTO: MARTIN DE RUYTER/FAIRFAX NZ

Shan­non McIl­roy, left, had to sur­vive a tough first round match with Mur­ray Scott be­fore win­ning the Bowls Nel­son men’s cham­pion of cham­pi­ons sin­gles ti­tle.

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