Defeat south of the border
Queensland lose on all four fronts. Queensland suffered a whitewash in the Test series v NSW at Port Macquarie.
Despite good performances and test wins, a series victory eluded all four teams.
Queensland traveled south to play New South Wales in the first test series of 2014, featuring Men’s and Women’s teams, and their under 25 counterparts, there was plenty of action at Port Macquarie City Bowls Club.
Brett Wilkie skipped Mullins, Kiepe and Baker to a comfortable 24-11 win, yet elsewhere the news was not so bright.
A Rice lead team of Thatcher, Ingham and Wild were shot down 13-23 by Aron Sherriff’s experienced side, while McWhinney, Egan and Murtagh, under the guidance of Anthony Fantini, were edged out 17-20. This left the first test tied at 54-54.
The Women’s opening test was one to forget as all three teams suffered defeat. Skip Louise Witton, with Wilson Lovelock and Foster, came closest to a win, narrowly losing 19-21. Jackaroo’s captain, Lynsey Clarke steered Thatcher, Millerick and Rowe, but they were kept at bay by Karen Murphy’s strong unit, 20-14.
Rosie Lovelock’s talented side of Jones, Wilson and Harkness couldn’t find their rhythm and suffered a heavy defeat to Murphy and her girls, 29-9.
The Kookaburras were finally chirping as the under 25 Men won all three of their first round encounters.
Kurt Brown leading the way with a 31-27 victory in his singles match, while Des Cann Jnr and Jay Cross picked up a 14-12 win in the pairs. Even closer was the triples game, 20-19 to Copeland, Leese and White.
The under 25 Women’s won their triples 20-15, with Wilson, Roberts and Styles bringing home the rink. Anderson was edged out 28-31 despite showing great determination, and Rixon and Millerick lost their pairs, 7-20.
On Thursday the teams took to the greens again with both sides looking to make improvements.
But it was NSW Men who made the biggest steps to winning the shield, taking apart the Queenslanders in all three games.
Wilkie lost 14-24 to Sherriff, Rice went down 16-21 to Garvey and Fantini tasted a 13-25 defeat, giving NSW an overall 70-43 victory.
Queensland Women fared better, running NSW close, but succumbed 55-46.
Witton triumphed 15-12 as Clarke’s side drew 18-18 but Lovelock’s defeat, 13-25, gave NSW the edge.
There was mixed news for the under 25 Men, Copeland and Cross squeaked a pairs victory, 18-17, as the triples went down 17-27, while Cann Jnr lost his singles 21-31.
NSW also took the under 25 Women’s test 2-1, Wilson losing 18-31 as Styles and Anderson lost 12-27.
The triples performed well, with an encouraging 33-24 victory.
The final games offered redemption for the Men as both teams were tied at 1-1.
Rice gave Queensland hope with a 24-16 victory, but there was only the smell of defeat elsewhere.
Fantini’s boys were beaten by Sherriff’s, 29-18, and Wilkie lost to Garvey, 15-20, giving NSW a 65-58 win, allowing them to retain the shield with a 2.5-0.5 series triumph.
White and Brown picked up a win in the under 25 pairs, 22-17, but defeats in the triples, 18-33, and the singles, where Copeland lost 16-33, saw the Blues home 2-1.
Results were close in the final Women’s test as Clarke beat Van Eldik 21-20, but unluckily, skips Rowe and Witton lost their final games 17-21. A 62-55 scoreline completing a NSW 3-0 series win.
Already 2-0 down the under 25 Women fought back with pride taking the final test 2-1.
Millerick was unfortunate to lose 28-31. But Roberts and Styles showed strength to win 16-13.
It was the triples who saved the best until last, Rixon, Wilson and Anderson with a resounding 38-20 demolition.
All four Queensland teams came home defeated, but the individual scorelines suggest a closer contest in many of the tests.
Whilst encouraging, there will be some tough training sessions ahead for the Kookaburras.