State Singles Champions of Club Champions
Congratulations to Julie Keegan (Kawana) and Cohen Litfin (Jindalee) who have taken out the women’s and men’s Champion of Club Champions singles titles.
The Men’s Singles Gold medal match between Jindalee’s young gun Cohen Litfin and Roma’s favourite Robert Hammond at the Souths Suburban Bowls Club in Mackay today was always going to be a close battle between the state’s top players and the players didn’t disappoint.
Litfin got away to a flying start with six shots to Hammond’s two by the seventh end but Hammond hung on and kept taking single shots to keep Litfin on his toes, but Litfin kept going and took a few twos and threes to Hammond’s ones and twos and remained well ahead to defeat Hammond 26-17.
After the game Robert Hammond (Grinder) said he felt good as not many people get to make it through to the state finals.
“I’ve been lucky enough to make it three times now.
“I wasn’t quite good enough to get the gold; I was outplayed again but silver is still honourable especially for a small country club that I’m from (Roma) as they’re always pretty excited and proud of the achievements.
“We had a lot of scrappy ends, the way the breeze comes around the clubhouse is very unpredictable, It was very hard to be confident with the green.
“Cohen was too good, a couple of ends he got them right on there and I didn’t have many shots to play, just had to try and draw for second shot.”
Soon after the game, Cohen Litfin said that the feeling of winning gold hadn’t quite kicked in yet but it felt pretty good so far.
“I got a bit worried at one stage of the game when I dropped four bowls more than six foot short, that was the scariest moment.
“I got plenty of messages from everyone at the club (Jindalee), they’re watching on livestream so I presume they are at home watching in the aircon!
“I’ve never played against Grinder before today, but I watched him yesterday and he was on fire, his draw shot was on song and he only missed the one run shot in the last game which was the last bowl.
“He’s a great player and I get to play him again in Cairns (in the North vs South tournament).”
In the Men’s Bronze medal match Kawana’s Ryan Burnett had too much firepower right at the end for Belmont Service’s Kane Nelson to claim the match and the medal. Burnett shot away to a 6-1 lead early, but Belmont Service’s young superstar wasn’t to be outdone that easily and pushed through with some classy shots until the 18th end when Nelson was leading 18-12. Burnett fought back and took four shots in the 21st end to even up the scores to 18-all. From then, it was slow climb for Burnett until he was leading 23-19, before Nelson repaid the favour and took four shots in the 27th end to even up the score to 23-all. Burnett took one shot, then Nelson took the next, putting everyone on the edge of their seats when it was 24-all in the second last end. Burnett needed one more shot to win and took it, defeating Nelson in the last end 25-24 to take the bronze medal.
In one of the most enthralling women’s gold finals, it was Gold Coast vs. Sunshine Coast with two favourites set to battle it out on the green. Lynsey Clarke from Tweed Heads took the lead early in the game against Kawana’s Julie Keegan, but Keegan shot a two and a three pushing her to a 12-8 lead. Clarke wasn’t able to catch up while Keegan kept notching up shots to win the match and the gold medal 25-18.
A captivated crowd were at times held breathless, as both players put on a display of lawn bowls at a level many expected from these high calibre players.
After the game, Lynsey Clarke said it’s a funny feeling when you win a silver medal.
“It feels a bit a disappointing at first not to win the gold, but I’m really proud of myself and proud to do it for the Tweed Heads club.
“They’ve been really supportive of me over the last 12 months, especially with the border being closed as I haven’t been able to get down there to see everyone.
“Hopefully they tuned in and watched the game.
“I never gave up, I just kept trying, I was a little bit off my normal game I think, but I hung tough and never gave up right until the very death.
“Credit to Julie, she played very consistently and deserved to win.”
Julie Keegan said she felt really excited to have won the gold.
“It was always going to be a tough game against Lynsey, she played amazingly and always does.
“I knew I had to be at my absolute best and hang in there.
“The greens were quite quick and they got quicker and quicker as the day went on.
“I kept resetting to keep focus and at the end came out with the win, so it was good.”
In the bronze medal match, Algester’s Debbie Logan had to produce top quality bowls to move ahead in the seventh end after some even play in the early part of the match against Mareeba’s Sue Brady. After trading shots early, Logan went out to a solid 12-6 lead but Brady never took a backward step and slowly closed the gap to four shots until Logan got back to a lead of six, then it was a slow defeat of 25-18, sealing the deal of a bronze medal for Logan.
GOLD MEDAL FINAL
Cohen Litfen (Jindalee) def Robert Hammond (Roma) 26-17
Julie Keegan (Kawana) def 15 Linsey Clarke (Tweed Heads) 25-18
BRONZE MEDAL FINAL
Ryan Burnett (Kawana) def Kane Nelson (Belmont Services) 25-24
Debbie Logan (Algester) def Sue Brady (Mareeba) 25-18
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