Clarke captures Singles crown

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Having been dumped out of the Fours on day one, 2007 champ Clarke was in no mood to let another chance of a title slip by.
She roared through the post sectional and knocked over Ann-Maree Peart, 25-9, in the semis to meet Rigby.
“I’m stoked, it was a ripper of a final,” said an excited Clarke.
Both players had been in great form all tournament, as two time State Singles champ Rigby cleared a convincing path to the final, including beating Faye Clarke in the semis.
Kawana’s Clarke, the only semi-finalist not to have won in the past, was undaunted when drawn against Rigby, the 1995 and 2000 winner.
“I’ve played against her a few times but today I just didn’t step up to the plate.”
With two bowls legends ready to face off on the greens, the stage was set for a sensational showdown, and Clarke and Rigby delivered.
An early streak of winning ends saw Clarke take up a 7-3 lead by end seven.
“I knew it was going to be tough and had to get an early lead as Maria is such a great player,” said Clarke.
As an experienced competitor, Rigby focused on the task ahead, pegging back Clarke to take the lead 7-9 after two consecutive three shots ends.
It was as tight as can be with both players striking tit for tat, squeezing only ones and twos onto the scorecard.
“She (Clarke) played awesome, I had to really be on my game,” offered Rigby.
Sitting at 12-12, the continually tight heads lead to no quarter being given, as Rigby secured another single to make it 17-17 after 21 ends.
Clarke put all her determination into the later stages.
“It was neck and neck and I couldn’t afford to sleep on any end. Definitely had to be thinking all the time.”
Finally, Clarke created daylight, a 2-1-2 gave her 22-17 lead, a quick jab in reply from Rigby made it 22-18 but Clarke kept rhythm.
“I just wanted to keep placing the bowls but she was doing better than I did,” Rigby said.
Taking three shots in two dramatic ends gave Clarke her second Women’s State Singles crown.
“After putting a bit of pressure on her I had a couple of big shots right at the end to finish the job,” was Clarke’s view of the of the winning ends.
Such great play will increase Clarke’s confidence as she heads in to the Triples and the Pairs.