Australia Snatch Victory From The Jaws Of Potential Defeat Over New Zealand In Tight Tussle At Naenae Bowling Club Clash
Wellington’s Naenae Bowling Club is hosting a lawn bowls Trans-Tasman, as we see the return of this event to New Zealand shores after a seven-year absence.
International bowls followers will recognise Naenae as being the hosts of the 2022 World Champion of Champions Singles event.
First played in 1979 when it was known as the ‘inter-dominion’, the Trans-Tasman event has always been hotly contested between New Zealand and our cousins across the ditch.
In recent years, Australia has dominated on their home turf with ‘Advance Australia Fair’ echoing across the greens upon the conclusion of the event more often than ‘God Defend New Zealand’.
This year, the New Zealand BlackJacks and Australian Jackaroos have both an open Men’s and Women’s team selected, and a para component with a B1-B8 Mixed Pair and a B6-B8 Women’s and Men’s Pair.
Additionally, men’s and women’s development teams have been selected to compete.
The test match runs for three days, and the team that wins the most games when the dust has settled- will win their respective trophy.
Today was the final day of play- and it was close all the way to the end.
The Open Women's Event is a race to ten wins and New Zealand drew with Australia on nine games apiece- but lost on a countback
in a devastating turn of events for the Kiwi contingent.
Going into the last round, New Zealand were on nine wins, and required a draw or a win in either the triples or the fours.
Australia showed their fighting spirit to claim what were agonising victories for the Kiwis, at a gusty Naenae Bowling Club.
The won the triples 16 shots to 13, and the pairs 15 shots to 12.
This meant that the two countries were tied on games won, and thus the trophy went to a countback of points diff- which Australia
The Open Men's Event was a race to ten wins and Australia ran out the winners, 13 wins to 5.
The Australian men's team is the best men's team in the world, and showed it over the three days of competition by successfully
playing the right shots at the right times.
New Zealand fought valiantly, and the vast majority of games had final scores that were within five points- but it wasn't enough.
A bright spot for the New Zealand team came with Shannon McIlroy being succesful in winning three of his five singles games.
The Development Women's Event was a race to ten wins, with Australia claiming the trophy 11 wins to 7.
New Zealand started the day trailing Australia by 9 games to three- and in a remarkable effort won all of their games in the
first two sessions to trail just seven games to 9.
Unfortunately for the New Zealand hopes thought, that was as close as it got and Australia posted two wins in the final session
to claim the trophy.
The Development Men's Event was a race to ten wins, with Australia claiming the trophy 9.5 to 8.5
This trophy event was tense for the entire three days, with no more than one game separating the two sides at any stage.
New Zealand went into round three of the day requiring a win in both the fours and the singles to claim the trophy- and went
agonisingly close, winning the fours 11-9, and losing the singles 18-21.
The Para Event was a race to nine wins and New Zealand snuck over the line, winning ten games to Australia's seven.
New Zealand and Australia have two of the best para bowls programs in the world, so it was particularly satisfying for the
New Zealand contingent to post a win over their Trans-Tasman rivals in this event- more so to be leading for the duration of the competition.
The test series itself is decided on trophies won, and with four trophies packed into their suitcases to take across the
Tasman Sea- Australia claimed this overall trophy too, which means that they now have to find room for five trophies to go into their carryon luggage upon their return home.