Henselite Tigers battle to win 1 from 4 from today’s encounters
The Hesneslite Tigers battled hard today, but could only walk away with one in from the four test matches held today. Let’s look at how the Men fared first of all.
In the morning the Tigers faced the Northern Territory team and were keen to make it 2 from 2 to start the Championships. Michael Sims got off to a great start leading 11-2 after 5 ends against Tristan Smallacombe. The other rinks were closer with Lee Schraner leading 5-3, recovering from a dropped 3 on the first end against Ex-Tasmanian Graeme Kitto, whilst Mark Nit had the closest battle of the day, down 3-4 against Alan Maher. Both Sims & Schraner would continue to exert their dominance, with Sims maintain a strong lead & Schraner winning Ends 6-10, making it 9 ends in a row. Nitz however was dropping behind, down 4-9 after 9 ends. The Overall result was looking comfortable but 3 rink wins could be crucial if it came to a count back at the end of the tournament. Schraner would only lose 4 more ends, winning 26-8, whilst Sims would win 7 of the last 10 ends to win 26-13. Nitz just couldn’t find any momentum to put the pressure on Maher, with Maher running out a 17-12 winner. That made it 2 from 2 for the Men before they faced the Victorians in the afternoon.
The encounter against the Vics was intriguing. The Men got off to a slow start but for the remainder of the game were always there abouts, never allowing the margin to extend too far. Schraner was keen to impress against current Jackaroos player Barrie Lester, and after the first 7 ends, there had been 7 multiple scores registered. A 5-0 lead for Schraner was quickly turned into 5-7 after 2 further ends before returning to a 10-7 lead only to drop a 5, talk about a roller coaster ride to start the match! Meanwhile Mark Nitz had won 7 of the first 9 ends against Dylan Fisher, but only found himself in a lead of 8-7 after dropping a 3 and a 4. Sims was struggling to pick up any ends against new Victorian player Matt Ellul, being 0-6 after 4 ends and 1-8 after 7. A quality match ensued, especially on the Schraner/Nitz rinks where multiple scores became few and far between. Schraner & Lester had a see saw battle, where neither team would ever string 3 consecutive ends together and after such a high scoring 7 ends, the end result of 20-19 to Schraner demonstrates how tight the heads were. Nitz was unable to keep winning ends against Fisher, with a crucial 8 shots over 6 ends to Fisher, whilst Nitz could only pick up 2 shots from the one end, enabled Fisher to establish a match winning lead, ending up winning by 6 shots. Sims & Ellul had a great battle, with Sims finding himself 9-15 down, picked up 7 shots in the next 4 ends to lead and maintained that lead heading in to the last end. On that penultimate end, the Tasmanian rink had a chance to make the overall result within reach, but Ellul would draw a toucher to end any hopes for our Tigers and then picked up two shots on the last end to win by 1.
The Women were put on the back foot in the morning, with the withdrawal of Rebecca Van Asch due to illness. Van Asch hasn’t been well since the last day of the Commonwealth Games and was not well enough to take her spot, with Courtney Hobbs taking the skips spot, whilst Leonie Price came into the side. The Northern Territory team saw an opportunity to pounce and used their home ground knowledge well to put our women under pressure. Hobbs was down 0-13 early against Sue Aumann, Sesara was down 5-10 against Colleen Orr & Hodgetts was down 8-9 against Bronwyn Chandler. Unfortunately for our Tigers, things never got much better. I had heard previously that the NT team had been practicing hard on their home venues and this extra practice paid off very well as they proceeded to win their first test in approximately 7 years. The Territorians were too strong with Aumann defeating Hobbs 28-17, Orr defeating Sesara 24-13 & Chandler defeating Hodgetts 28-16. Not the result our team expected, but from the bowls played, one deserved for the opposition.
After a disappointing morning, our Women were keen to get back on to the front foot vs the Victorians. Van Asch was starting to feel a little better and stepped back in to the side. I don’t know if it was the return of Van Asch but the women started strongly, with all three rinks having leads in the early part of the game. Van Asch was playing against Tiffany Brodie and lead 8-5 after 9 ends. Erin Sesara, who has now played over 100 games for Tasmania, led Carla Krizanic 9-4 after 8 ends & Hodgetts led Samantha Shannahan 5-4 after 6 ends. But when you play against the Victorian team, full of quality players, you know they will never let you have things your own way. Hodgetts lost 8 of the next 9 ends and was now down by 16 shots, a margin that couldn’t be covered by the other two rinks, despite them maintaining leads up to and including the 15th end, Van Asch by 2 & Sesara by 7. But unfortunately, things went downhill over the last 18 ends of the match. Van Asch would lose 19 shots over the last 8 ends including a 6 on the last end to lose 17-26. Sesara lost 12 shots over 5 ends, picked up a one on the last end but lost by 2 shots 18-20. Hodgetts didn’t allow the score to continue to blow out, but still went down by 13 shots 16-29.
The third day of play will see our Henselite Tigers take on NSW in the morning and ACT in the afternoon.
In other matches, the Alley Shield (Men’s competition) saw the Queensland team defeat arch rivals NSW, an interesting experience for ex Blue Aron Sherriff I’m sure! Victoria defeated Western Australia and South Australia maintained their strong run defeating the ACT. In the afternoon South Australia caused maximum pain on NSW, Queensland defeated the ACT & Western Australia had an all rink win against the NT.
In the Marj Morris Trophy (Women’s competition) the ACT got on to the winner’s board defeating South Australia, Victoria were too strong against Western Australia & NSW had a 29 shot win over Queensland. In the afternoon the ACT made it a day to remember defeating the more fancied Queensland, Western Australia prevented the Northern Territory from having a winning double and the very strong NSW team had an all rink win against South Australia.
Men – Tasmania def Northern Territory 68-38
Schraner def Kitto 26-8
M Sims def Smallacombe 26-13
Nitz def by Maher 12-17
Women – Tasmania def by Northern Territory 46-80
Hobbs def by Aumann 17-28
Sesara def by Orr 13-24
Hodgetts def by Chandler 16-28
Men – Tasmania defeated by Victoria 51-57
Schraner def Lester 20-19
M Sims def by Ellul 18-19
Nitz def by Fisher 13-19
Women – Tasmania def by Victoria 51-75
Van Asch def by Brodie 17-26
Sesara def by Krizanic 18-20
Hodgetts def by Shannahan 16-29
Men – 1 VIC, 2 SA, 3 TAS, 4 QLD, 5 NSW, 6 WA, 7 ACT, 8 NT
Women – 1 NSW, 2 VIC, 3 WA, 4 ACT, 5 NT, 6 QLD, 7 TAS, 8 SA
Tomorrow the highlights will be the Victoria/South Australia match in the Men’s comp, pitting both undefeated teams and the two previous champions and then in the afternoon the Victoria/Queensland match could also have a big baring on what happens in the overall result.
In the Women’s competition, the WA/ACT match in the morning will decide the team who will challenge Victoria & NSW for the title, whilst in the afternoon both the Victoria/Queensland match and the NSW/WA encounter could prove crucial.
Good luck to all bowlers!
By David Genford