State Junior Championships – Day 1 Wrap

by Billy Johnson

The pairs finalists have been confirmed after the first day of play at the Bowls NSW State Junior Championships. Ryan Hansen & Travis Moran (Zone 13) and Brendan Stokes and Bailey Meti (Zone 15) will battle it out for the State Junior Pairs title, winning their way through their sections and two high quality semi-finals. All four teams adapted to the sensational Warilla indoor surface with ease, producing quality bowls throughout their matches.

Ryan Hansen and Travis Moran (Zone 13) jumped out to a 12 – 1 lead against Zone 4, only to see Lachlan Thompson and Tom Rich claw their way back into the game. It proved to be too little too late however, as Zone 13 pushed away to win 15 – 6. In the second semi-final, Brad Farlow and Katie Astley (Zone 5) were neck and neck with Brendan Stokes and Bailey Meti (Zone 15) early in the match, until a crucial 4 saw the Central Coast duo jump out to an 8 – 4 lead. From there, they stepped up a gear, playing brilliantly to record a 20 – 7 win. For Brad and Katie, despite the loss they performed admirably and certainly did their Zone proud.

Section 1

Tom Rich and Lachlan Thompson (Zone 4) started their campaign with a 14 – 9 win over Zone 7 in the morning live stream match, and continued their good form into the next round, dispatching of Zone 12 25 – 6 to qualify for the semi-finals.

Section 2

Southern Sydney’s Ryan Hansen and Travis Moran were in scintillating form in sectional play, winning both of their matches against Zone 6 and Zone 9. While they did not qualify, a special mention must go to Riley Scott-Branagan (Zone 9) for playing with a broken wrist! Even more impressive is that Riley is ambidextrous, making the switch slightly easier for him.

Section 3

Brendan Stokes and Bailey Meti (Zone 15) were victorious in both of their matches, which included a 15 – 8 win over Ryan Kennedy and Jack McShane (Zone 10) in what was a match worthy of a final. The third round clash was live streamed, so those who have yet to see the match can still watch the replay on the Bowls NSW Facebook page.

Section 4

The winner of Section 4 wasn’t confirmed until the final bowl of the match came to rest between Zone 5 and Zone 14. Brad Farlow and Katie Astley (Zone 5) needed a win or draw against Zone 14 to qualify for the semi-finals, but a loss would have seen Jonah Threadgate and Caleb McDermott (Zone 2) go through.

Heading into the last end, Zone 5 led 21 – 20 still needing to win the last end to qualify. Shot was exchanged multiple times, but Zone 5 managed to hold a solitary shot as the dust settled on the final bowl, seeing them through their section.

Tune in to the Bowls NSW Facebook page from 9:45am on to watch what promises to be a fantastic final.

Click here to view the results from the State Junior Championships.