Wins don’t come easy at the #AusOpenGC

by admin

Claire Turley and Kristy Thatcher have had two great escapes in the women’s pairs at the Australian Open proving that no win comes easy for any player at the world’s biggest festival of bowls. No win will be easy at the 2015 Australian Open; even the country’s most elite players need to dig deep if they are to reign supreme in the world’s richest bowls event.  

The world’s biggest festival of bowls has brought an array of tough competition to the Gold Coast, allowing every player a chance to play against some of the sports best. 

Australian Jackaroos Claire Turley and Kristy Thatcher faced a tough day of competition in the women’s pairs sectional on June 17, being pushed to their limits to win all three of their sectional encounters at Musgrave Hill.
 
Their first game was against Queensland’s Tiffany Murray and Taleah Putney, two up and coming junior bowlers both looking to make their mark on the game during this year’s Australian Open. 

With two ends left in play, Murray and Putney were in a strong position to claim victory over two Australian Jackaroos, leading the pair by nine shots. 

However, in the last two ends, Turley and Thatcher managed a heroic comeback scoring a four on the second last end and then a full count of six on the last to claim the match, 21-20. 

In their second game, Turley and Thatcher faced Northern Territory representatives Shae Smith and Karen Pickering and managed to get themselves into a similar predicament.  

A strong start from the underdogs, Smith and Pickering took a convincing early lead 13-2 and were looking solid to take a huge scalp in the Australian Open. 

However, once against Turley and Thatcher battled through the final half of the game and showed their great fighting spirit to string together seven straight ends to claim the match 15-13.

In their final game, the pair faced Sunshine Coast bowlers Marilyn Clayton and Brenda Balchin from Coolum Beach.

After living on the edge in their opening two matches Turley and Thatcher were determined to get off to a better start and played their best game of the day, winning with a score of 22-7 and progressing to the knockout matches on Saturday June 20. 

Turley cites constant positivity and encouragement between the ladies was used as a stronghold throughout the tense moments during their matches.

Turley will meet Australia’s most capped international bowler Karen Murphy at Club Helensvale at 11:15am on Monday June 22; whilst Thatcher will have a chance of redemption against WA’s Noelene Abe who defeated the Tweed Heads local in the final of the Australian Champion of Champion singles in 2013. 

Unfortunately the duo were knocked out of the women’s fours competition after facing tough competition this morning in Natasha Scott, Carla Odgers, Natalie Noronha and Samantha Noronha who are now down to the last eight.  

The high level competition present at this year’s Australian Open has resulted in a number of tough matches being played out on the Gold Coast greens, proving that no win is easy and even Australia’s best need to be on song if they want to be the last one standing in the world’s richest bowls event.