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Kiwis win shearing test at Thrones castle site

Kiwis win shearing test at Thrones castle site

An ancient Northern Ireland castle estate used for filming fantasy drama Game of Thrones has been the unlikely scene of the New Zealand shearing team’s latest victories on the Elders Primary Wool UK Tour.

John Kirkpatrick, of Napier, and David Fagan, of Te Kuiti, beat an Ulster team of Northern Ireland shearer Jack Robinson and Ivan Scott, from the Republic of Ireland, in a test match in a marquee alongside the ruins of Shane’s Castle, near Belfast, on Monday.

Kirkpatrick also won the Northern Irish Sheep Shearing Association event’s first Open final on the castle estate by a narrow margin from England-based New Zealand shearer Matthew Smith, with Fagan in third place.

New Zealanders were also to the fore in the Senior final, with a breakthrough victory for Marton shearer Jacob Moore. South Island-based Masterton shearer Ethan Pankhurst was runner-up.

Kirkpatrick and Fagan have now had two wins and a loss in tests against Scotland, England and Ulster, and their tour ends with a four-test series against Wales, starting at Cothi on Friday and ending at the Royal Welsh Show next week.


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