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Bowls In Focus : February 2010
6 Bowls In Focus Orian Group Sides Championship proved to be one of the most challeng- ing examination papers in sport, where success requires the finest players from around the state to produce all the skills and mental toughness they can muster over this all-important weekend. Last month, in the 40th champion- ship at the Corowa Services Bowls Club, contenders needed another capability in the quest for victory, physical endurance, with temperatures pushing the mercury up to and beyond the 40-degree mark. And in the blazing Corowa sun it was the men of Metro West Group 9 who outgunned archrivals Metro Group 10 by 19 shots in the 60-end final to claim their sixth title, and make it three out of four from recent years. This traditional showcase of the state's talent bank invites all sixteen bowls regions to send their best side to Corowa to decide which is the state's top Group for the season. Each team has three sectional rounds on Saturday in which to stake a claim for Sunday's finals. For individuals, this is the stage on which to perform well enough to catch the eye of the state selectors, who can be seen lurking around the many vantage points of the world's largest bowling complex. Three wise decisions by the match committee made this year's Sunday finals as comfortable as possible in the conditions. By starting an hour earlier; lowering the prescribed number of ends from the traditional 18 to 15; and playing the grand final immediately following the semi-finals; competitors, officials and spectators were back in the air-conditioned clubhouse well before 2pm. Like a pair of bristling prize fighters the finalists shadowboxed over the first eight ends, with the scores being five apiece before the Metro West side launched a no-holds-barred assault, which saw them, leading 41-14 at the halfway mark. Main contributor to the scoreline was the rink of Altona's Brenton Coad, Ben Major from Werribee RSL and Altona clubmates Ray Morrissey and Jamie Pearce, who lead the Metro North combination of Sunbury's Graeme Bridge, Aaron Wilson from Essendon, Sunbury's Brent Petrie and Mathew Rennex from Moonee Valley 13-1. However, immediately after the midway scores were semaphored, the Group 10 side collected 11 shots across the board to sit sixteen in ar- rears and in striking distance with 24 to play. But sadly, that was where their run petered out, despite the valiant rearguard performance of Bridge's men who recovered from their 12-shot deficit to level the scores with one end to play, then picked up a single on the last.With three winning rinks and a healthy margin the westerners added the 2010 title to their wins in 2008 and 2007, while they have prevailed on three other occasions 2002, 1996 and 1982. West Best The Championship Finals Final: Metro West (9) d Metro North (10) 65-46 Rink 1: MW Wayne Roberts (Altona) skip, Andrew Myers (Altona), Chris Ball (Altona), Garry Ball (Altona) defeated MN David Donaldson (Essendon) skip, Michael Vesikko (Sunbury), Chris Ritchie (West Coburg), Steve Shennan (Essendon) 20-10. Rink 2: MW Paul Dorgan (Altona) skip, Jeremy Cassidy (Altona), Ben Loughlin (Altona), Matt Perkins (Altona) defeated MN Matty Flapper (Essendon) skip, Mark Ryan (Essendon), Daniel Woodrow (Fitzroy-Victoria), Mark Johnson (Essendon) 18-11. Rink 3: MW Brett Dodd (Werribee RSL) skip, Brendan Barker (Werribee RSL), Mick O'Neill (Werribee RSL), Dane McKinnon (Werribee RSL) defeated MN Peter Loe (Essendon) skip, Ian Ewing (Lalor), Brad Willoughby (Sunbury), Geoff Boyd (Essendon) 12-9. Rink 4: MW Brenton Coad (Altona) skip, Ben Major (Werribee RSL), Ray Morrissey (Altona), Jamie Pearce (Altona) lost to MN Graeme Bridge (Sunbury) skip, Aaron Wilson (Essendon), Brent Petrie (Sunbury), Mathew Rennex (Moonee Valley) 15-16. Semi finals: Metro North (10) d North Central (5) 62-41 (D Donaldson 18 A Tomkins 7, M Flapper 18 A McIntyre 14, P Loe 13 B Foley 9, G Bridge 13 B Holland 11); Metro West (9) d Metro South East (14) 69-57 (W Roberts 20 DBenwell8,PDorgan23TWood12,BDodd13NDevlin14,BCoad13 P Elgar 23). • Above: State chairman Graeme Hosken presents Metro West team manager Pat Clark with the coveted crystal champion's trophy. • Below: Top North Central skipper Adam McIntyre from Moama during the semi-finals.
March April 2010