Stage set for blockbuster finale
Bowling legends, state reps and former champions…who will make the cut for tomorrow’s State Mixed Pairs final? The stage is set for a spectacular finale to this year’s State Mixed Pairs, following an action-packed day on Club Pine Rivers’ state-of-the-art undercover green.
After two high-octane rounds, just four teams are still in the running to reach this year’s final.
But who will it be?
The loved-up Queensland state reps, both of them firmly in the sights of national selectors?
Or the international bowling legend, who has teamed up with a former Mixed Pairs champ for a shot at this year’s title?
Perhaps it will be that former champ’s husband, who has joined forces with a giant of Queensland bowls for a run at his fourth Mixed Pairs crown?
Or maybe it will be this year’s dark-horse, two quality grafters from Mackay who have plenty of experience on the big stage?
With one round still to go, it’s anyone’s guess who we’ll see in tomorrow’s grand final!
There were no upsets in today’s opening rounds of the 2014 State Mixed Pairs finals.
As expected three-time champion Kurt Brown topped his section at the end of Day 1, following two impressive double-digit wins on his home turf at Pine Rivers.
Brown, who has teamed up with former Queensland star Ester Regan for this year’s champs, dispatched North West Queensland’s Bev Peters and Damien McGee in Round 1, 30-15.
The pair had an equally impressive win in Round 2, shooting down Condamine champs Jodie Biggar and Brian Slater, 21-9.
The wins left Regan and Brown top of the table in Section 1 on 2+27.
Their lead was far from decisive however, with Mackay stalwarts Di Faulkner and Ray Kurtz just one shot off the pace on 2 +26.
Faulkner and Kurtz clocked up similarly impressive wins over Biggar and Slater, 22-6, and Peters and McGee 21-11, setting up a do-or-die clash with Regan and Brown in tomorrow’s third and final round (8.30am).
There’s an even more scintillating showdown on the cards in Section 2.
Club Helensvale’s Pam Rowe and Anthony Fantini will battle Club Kawana’s Emma Brown and Ian Schuback (pictured) for a place in the final.
It’s an epic Gold Coast versus Sunshine Coast clash, but that’s only the start of it.
Loved-up duo Rowe and Fantini are both all-star Queensland state reps and firmly in the sights on national selectors.
Brown has also represented Queensland, but more importantly, she won the State Mixed Pairs title back in 2012 with hubby Kurt…who she may have to fight for this year’s title if they both reach the final (the plot thickens!)
Brown is teamed up with international bowls legend, former ABC commentator and Queensland Bowler coaching guru, Ian Schuback.
Schuey’s achievements are too numerous to list, so let’s just leave it at, he’s still the only Australian to win a World Indoor Singles title.
If that match-up doesn’t make for a must-see, nothing will!
As in Section 1, only one shot separates the top two teams in Section 2.
Rowe and Fantini kicked off their campaign with an eight-shot win over Bundaberg’s Bev Parker and Jim See, 28-20, before clocking-up an impressive 18-shot win over Gateway’s Lyn and Glenn Malone, 29-11, to finish up Day 1 on 2+26.
Brown and Schuback, meanwhile, beat Team Malone 23-14, before hammering the Bundy duo 31-15, to finish on 2+25.
Who will emerge victorious from tomorrow’s Round 3 Coast-vs-Coast clash is anyone’s guess, but either way, it’s sure to be a smashing game.
Round three action kicks off at Club Pine Rivers tomorrow at 8.30am.