Mens and Womens Centre Pairs Round-Up by Lindsay Knight
Brown Bay’s two remarkable veterans, John Walker and Colin Rogan, continued what has been, even by their high standards, a rich vein of form by winning yet another Centre title at the weekend.
In the final of the Bowls North Harbour Men’s Championship pairs at Manly they beat Helensville’s father-and-son combination of Kylie and Callum Clark 20-9 to add to the champion triples won earlier this year and the previous weekend’s open two-four-two title.
Rogan now has 37 Centre titles and Walker 28. To be beaten by such redoubtable campaigners, however, was no dishonour for the two Clarks, with Callum at just 19 years old clearly a bright prospect.
In the semi-finals Walker and Rogan had a surprisingly comfortable win 21-8 over the more fancied Helensville pair of Ricky Howe and Bart Robertson and the Clarks accounted for Takapuna’s Shaun Goldsbury and Ian Hardy 18-11.
It was another top effort by the Takapuna pair as they were also in the semi-finals for the two-four-two competition and Goldsbury, astonishingly, is only in his first year.
While veterans like Walker, Rogan Robertson excelled this was another tournament which revealed the Centre is blessed with emerging young talent. For besides Callum Clark, a sixth-year player despite his tender years, and Goldsbury, Mairangi Bay junior Michael Thomas, who is only in his 20s, made the quarterfinals with Leon Wech.
The other combinations beaten in the quarter-finals were Steve Doolan and Roy Parker (Beach Haven), Jeremy Brosnan and Jerry Belcher (Takapuna) and Greg Taylor and Mike Haggart (Northcote).
In the Women’s Championship Birkenhead’s Millie Nathan and Connie Mathieson won a thrilling final from an experienced Orewa combination of Elaine McClintock and Kerin Roberts.
This was a see-saw battle which could have gone either way. McClintock and Roberts, both centre gold stars, led 12-8 after 12 ends, only for the game to swing Birkenhead’s way when they picked up a four on the 16th end for a four-shot lead.
Orewa just fell short with a two and a single on the final two ends to lose 17-16.
It was the fourth Centre title for Mathieson, who has dual Birkenhead and Takapuna membership, and the third for Nathan, another still in junior ranks.
Mathieson and Nathan also had a single shot win 15-14 over Takapuna’s Lisa Dickson and Lauren Mills in the semi-finals and McClintock and Roberts recovered from a slow start to beat Birkenhead’s Ruth Lynch and Loz Croot 15-8.