2023 Australian Open – Day 14 recap

by Bowls Australia on June 23, 2023

Men’s singles final

Aron Sherriff’s domination of the Australian Open singles competition continued on Friday, claiming his fifth singles crown.

Arguably the best bowler in the world, Sherriff was in illustrious touch throughout the entirety of the Australian Open, claiming two titles as well as runners-up in the pairs.

He capped off his week with the singles victory over a gallant Jacob Nelson, competing in his first Australian Open singles final.

24-year-old Nelson settled his nerves well from the outset, leading 3-0 to work his way into the contest well.

As expected, it didn’t take Sherriff long to respond, levelling the scores as the duo went shot for shot throughout the middle stages of the game.

Scores sat level at 11-11 before Sherriff began to make his move.

Five consecutive shots to the reigning champion put him in the box seat, but Nelson held his nerve, picking up a three to move the scores back to 14-16 in favour of Sherriff.

But it was the Broadbeach local who knew how to get to the finishing line, scoring 10 of the last 13 shots of the match to write his name into the history books – again.

Sherriff said he was “over the moon” with the win.

He becomes the first man to win back-to-back Australian Open singles crowns, and the first ever to win singles titles in consecutive years.

Final score: Aron Sherriff def Jacob Nelson 21-14

Women’s pairs final

Genevieve Delves and Natasha Van Eldik mounted a comeback to remember on their way to taking out the Australian Open women’s pairs title on Friday.

Taking on the impressively-credentialed duo of Carmen Anderson and Ellen Falkner, it was the latter that took a firm grasp on the contest from the outset.

The Cabramatta pair took the first four ends to lead 9-0 before Delves and Van Eldik picked up a three of their own to hit the scoreboard.

The teams shared honours over the middle stages, but it was ends 13 and 14 when the Raymond Terrace pair made their move. Picking up a two and a three on consecutive ends, they brought scores level at 13 apiece, before another twist in the tale.

A three to team Falkner on the 15th end put them back in the box seat, before team Van Eldik stole the show.

With five Australian Open titles between them, they used all of their experience to roar back and level the scores at 16-16, before winning the final two ends and take out a memorable final win.

“It’s really special. I can confidently say I don’t think I’ll ever win anything better than this again,” Delves said after the victory.

Final score: Genevieve Delves & Natasha Van Eldik def Carmen Anderson & Ellen Falkner 19-16

Men’s fours final

One of the matches of the tournament took place to decide the conquerors of the men’s fours event and it was the quartet of Barrie Lester, Corey Wedlock, Aaron Teys and Aron Sherriff who clinched the epic encounter with a 15-14 win over Brendan Wilson, Clinton Bailey, Scott de Jongh and Nick Cahill.

Sherriff’s rink led for the majority of the contest thanks to some sensational precision but it was Cahill who consistently provided respite at the back end for his team.

The Emerging Jackaroo’s resolve saw his squad emerge from a 13-8 deficit to level the contest at 14-all with an end to play, but with the four Australian representatives holding sway it was up to Cahill to find a result with his final delivery, but alas it was not to be and it was Sherriff and company who lifted the trophy aloft.

Sherriff’s performance at the tournament is well documented, having now won a seventh on green title, but it was a maiden crown for Wedlock and a second for Teys and Lester.

Over 60s men’s pairs final

Greg Brims and Eric Ryan took down former champions Max Jaffray and Neville Jenkins as they secured the over-60s men’s pairs title on Friday.

Brims and Ryan took the jump early, leading 12-1, a lead their Queensland opponents could not reel back in.

They managed to cut the score back down, but it was Brims and Ryan who were able to hold on for the victory.

The win was a second title for Brims, who won the one and only instalment of the over-60s mixed pairs back in 2014.

Final score: Greg Brims & Eric Ryan def Max Jaffray & Neville Jenkins 20-10

Over 60s women’s pairs final

It was the South Australian sister-in-laws of Debra and Karin Lynch who secured a remarkable title win against the South Tamworth duo of Carol White and Christine Myers after rectifying a four shot deficit with three ends to play to claim the title.

After taking an early buffer the Lynch pairing were put under immense pressure by their counterparts, with White leading to perfection and Myers anchoring superbly to secure a fourth lead change as they rocketed out to a 15-11 lead.

The South Australians then clicked into gear, securing a two before Karin was able to convert a four in the penultimate end to ensure that they enjoyed favour with just an end to play.

In the decisive end the pair held two with Myers having the final bowl to possibly secure an extra end, but the sublime construction ensured that the family members would take home their maiden titles.

Final score: Debra & Karin Lynch 20 def Carol White & Christine Myers 15

Under 18 boys’ singles final

Queensland’s Riley Gerick was in action against fellow statesman Samuel Collier for the title and looked on song from the outset as he secured 11 of the first 14 ends to race out to a 16-3 lead.

His opponent would begin to claw his way back however, clinching five of the next six to cause some nerves in the game of the Capalaba member.

The final end saw two brilliant lead bowls give Gerick the ascendancy, with Collier unable to claw his way back to wrestle shot away, granting him a maiden Australian Open crown.

Final score: Riley Gerick def Samuel Collier 21-12

Under 18 girls’ singles final

In a replay of the 2022 Under-18 Australian Championships singles final, Merimbula-Imlay’s Reese Finn-Young and Berwick’s Amity Bickley met again at Broadbeach, this time vying for the Australian Open under-18 girls crown.

Finn-Young took the 2022 honours, but it was Bickley who flew out of the blocks on Friday, opening the match with a maximum to mark her intent.

The young NSW star settled into the game well shortly afterwards however, taking the ascendancy before Bickley fought back with scores 11-11 during the middle stages of the contest.

Finn-Young would go on to win seven of the final 10 ends and secure the title, to go with her national championships gold.

Final score: Reese Finn-Young def Amity Bickley 21-15

Player of the tournament

It was no surprise that Sherriff claimed the 2023 Australian Open player of the tournament honours.

Winning two titles (singles and fours), as well as runners-up in the pairs, Sherriff collected 240 ranking points.

Cassandra Millerick’s impressive tournament was rewarded with 136 to finish second in the standings.