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Welsh Rare Bit - First Shearing-test Win In New Zealand

April 06

History has been made at the New Zealand Shears in Te Kuiti last night (Friday) with Wales’ first-ever shearing test match win over New Zealand in New Zealand.

Avenging a 3-0 defeat in Wales last year, Masterton shearers Paerata Abraham and David Gordon had taken an unbeatable Wools of New Zealand International Shearing Series lead a after winning the first two tests at Raetihi and Waipukurau, the latter by just 1.9 points.

But Wales, with Rhayader shearer Gethin Lewis, who was in development team beaten 3-0 in New Zealand last year before returning north for the home-series win, joined by Stafford-based Llyr Jones, from Llanrwst, saved the best until last to claim the 20-lambs-each King Country series-ender by just 0.188 points.

Abraham dominated the race, finishing in 15m 43.72s, more than 23 seconds before next-man-off Lewis, who had the best quality points, while Gordon and Jones provided the closing entertainment, a blow-for-blow race to avoid being last to finish, Gordon winning by 0.73 seconds.

It was another major triumph for Wales in World shearing, for many years dominated by the black singlet.

But Wales is now firmly on top after back-to-back 2019 and 2023 World title wins to Richard Jones and Gwion Evans respectively and the pair’s teams win in the latest championships in Scotland last June – the same pair having been beaten 5-0 in a series in New Zealand in 2016.

Lewis (the reigning Champion Shearer of Wales) and Llyr Jones have each worked at least five summers in New Zealand, and were ecstatic as the result was announced, and said the win would be seen as “big” back in Wales.

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Team manager Hywel Jones, who shore successfully as a lower grades shearer working in New Zealand in the early 1980s, said his pair had shorn well in the three matches with closer results match-by-match.


Wools of New Zealand International Shearing Series, Third Test (20 lambs): Wales (Gethin Lewis 16m 7.23s, 55.912pts, 1; Llyr Jones 16m 19.7s, 62.685pts) 119.597pts, beat New Zealand (David Gordon 16m 18.97s, 57.949pts; Paerata Abraham 15m 43.72s, 61.836pts) 119.785pts, by 0.188pts. New Zealand won the series 2-1.

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