The finalisation of the Taranaki women’s open triples bowls event brought with it significant milestones for all three members of the victorious side at West End on Saturday.
The Paritutu trio of Marie Mummery, Marlene Barrowman and skip Heather Johns did enough, and then held on, to beat a team of clubmates skipped by Cathy Andrews 21-19 in the final of the Abraham’s Funeral Home-sponsored event. Andrews was teamed with Bridget Fletcher and Barbara Batley.
For Mummery it was her maiden Taranaki title and a chance to break through and be considered more than just the wife of Bruce, a fellow bowler.
Barrowman collected her fifth Taranaki title, therefore joining her brother David Bennett in the gold star ranks. Barrowman’s earlier triumphs came in the champion-of-champions fours (2010), the open singles (2012), the open triples (2019) and the open pairs with Johns in December last year.
Johns is likely to still point to her 2013 Dominion fours victory as the most poignant moment she has enjoyed in the sport. Nonetheless, Saturday’s victory was her 10th in Taranaki, enabling her to be awarded a bar to her gold star.
After Andrews’ side had led 4-0, Johns returned in kind to take the advantage 6-4. Through 12 of the 21 ends, Andrews led 10-8.
But then the Johns team won the next six ends to lead 21-10. The lead appeared plenty.
However, Andrews came back with a three, then a four. A further four was required on the last end to tie up the contest. It was on the cards when Fletcher drew two close, but the rest of the head was markedly loose meaning Johns had the luxury of not having to play her last bowl.
Meanwhile, in the Cleggs Funeral Services-sponsored Taranaki men’s open triples, which was decided at Hawera Park on Saturday, West End’s Dave Wilson claimed the title for a second-successive year.
This year Wilson led for Dean Elgar, with the consistent Steve Walker in the middle of the team. Last year, Wilson won the title with Glen Brookes and Bruce Phillips.
The Elgar side ran out comfortable 21-11 victors in the final over Oakura’s Aidan Zittersteijn, Kurt Smith and skip Adam Collins.
Collins led the final 5-2 after four ends. But the next six heads went Elgar’s way and with it a 14-5 lead.
While Collins replied with a two on the next end, Elgar trumped it with a four and a two. Somewhat surprisingly Collins waved the white flag with a difference of 10 but leaving four ends being unplayed.
That was a contrast to the semifinals, where Collins cooly drew the winning shot on the last end to enable his side to upset a Tower team of Mark Kuklinski, John Roberts and Phillips 18-16.
In the other semi, Elgar came from 13-5 down to beat West End’s Steve Temperton, Dennis Osborne and Craig De Faria 19-15.