The finalists for the 2019 Mixed Pairs Championship have been decided with the completion of the quarter finals and semi finals. In the remaining quarter final Bruce and Denise Lidbury had a great tussle with Cheryl McRae and Lawrie Riley. Nothing separated the teams after 11 ends with the scores tied at 9 all. The Lidbury’s then grabbed the lead picking up a brace of threes to move to 15 – 9. McRae and Riley fought back and the score was 15 – 14 after 16 ends. The Lidbury’s then made the crucial break picking up 5 shots on the next two ends to increase their lead to 20 – 15 with just 3 ends to play. They held on to win a very competitive game 22 – 16.
In their semi-final the Lidburys started quickly in their game against Sharron Perry and Joel Hilliard. They scored 5 shots on the first end and followed it with 6 shots on the fifth end. By the tenth end they had a match winning 19 – 3 lead. As expected Perry and Hilliard fought back winning 6 of the next 7 ends to narrow the lead to 20 – 12. However, they could not maintain the momentum and the Lidbury’s pulled away to win 27 – 12. They are now in the final and with a chance to defend their Championship.
The second semi-final proved to be a very exciting match between Peter Davies and Gail Page and Fran O’Connell and Marcel Kors. O’Connell and Kors were both in top form as they led from the second end. They maintained the lead for most of the match and looked in a winning position when they scored 5 shots on the 16th end to move to 23 – 12. Using all of their experience and skill, Davies and Page fought back strongly. By the 19th end they had clawed back to 23 – 18. Then on the second last end they managed to score an incredible 7 shots to grab the lead for the first time since the very first end! Not to be outdone O’Connell and Kors struck back on the last end and scored the two shots needed to force the game into an extra end. In fact, it looked as if they might have had the three shots to win but were denied by a great bowl from Page.
On the deciding end Davies and Page had the better of the early bowls. O’Connell played a good bowl to cut the score back to one shot. Kors then played a very risky ‘on shot’ and was rewarded when he disturbed the head and was able to grab the shot for his team. Page then regained the lead with her next bowl but had to watch as Kors played another wonderful bowl that finished very close to the jack. Page was unable to match this bowl and the score finished 26 – 25 in favour of O’Connell and Kors. They now have the challenge of playing the Lidbury’s in the final but have shown they have what it takes to win tough games!
Above: Sharron Perry and Joel Hilliard
Above: Gail Page and Peter Davies Mixed Pairs semi finalists
Above: Fran O'Connell and Marcel Kors - Mixed Pairs Finalists