2024 Imagine Cruising World Indoor Bowls Championship – Day Nine Recap
Defending mixed pairs champions at the Imagine Cruising World Indoor Bowls Championships Ceri Ann Glen and Stewart Anderson will make a bold bid to retain their title after reaching the final again this year. They will play Julie Forrest and Nick Brett. Let’s take a look at what happened yesterday (Saturday) on the portable rink with the World Bowls Tour’s Anne Dunwoodie.
DEFENDING CHAMPIONS WIN THROUGH TO FINAL
Defending champions Ceri Ann Glen from Wales and Scotland’s Stewart Anderson have put themselves in the box seat to retain the Imagine Cruising World Indoor Bowls Mixed Pairs title they won last year against Guernsey’s Alison Merrien and Paul Foster MBE.
In their semi-final, they were made to battle all the way against Mark Dawes and his partner Guilia Gallo from California who, for someone who doesn’t play on an indoor surface, has certainly done the hard yards on the portable rink since her arrival at Potters and made a sold contribution to the partnership.
The USA/English pair won the opening set 8-4, scoring six shots over four of the opening five ends then both pairings scored singles on each of two of the remaining four ends to win the first set 8-4.
They kept that momentum in the second set and led 4-2 after four ends. However the holders came onto a rich vein of form and scored on the remaining four ends to put the set beyond doubt at 9-4.
The tie breaks were also tense with Glen/Anderson signalling the upper hand on the first end and Dawes drawing the second end winner with his last bowl.
On the deciding end, Glen rolled in two inch perfect bowls, Dawes struck and missed with both bowls leaving Glen and Anderson signing off with a 2-1 victory and a place in Tuesday’s Mixed Pairs final. (16th January) at 1pm
RESULT: *Holders – Ceri Ann Glen (Wales) & Stewart Anderson (Scot) bt Guilia Gallo (USA) & Mark Dawes (Eng) 4-8, 9-4, 2-1.
JULIE FORREST & NICKY BRETT NAB THE FINAL SPOT IN THE MIXED PAIRS TITLE DECIDER
Scotland’s Julie Forrest and Huntingdon star Nicky Brett cemented the remaining berth in the final of the Imagine Cruising World Indoor Bowls Mixed Pairs title decider and will now meet defending champions Ceri Ann Glen and Stewart Anderson.
The Scotland/England combo battled out their semi-final this afternoon against the all-English pairing of Nicole Rogers and Wayne Willgress, and in a match that could have gone either way, Forrest and Brett did enough to get them over the finishing line and keep their title dream alive.
Both sets were tantalisingly poised at 6-5 on the penultimate end in favour of Forrest and Brett and they managed to avert the danger, scoring singles on the last end in each set to wrap up a 7-5, 7-5 victory.
Expectations are high for a great final, especially with all of the finalists recording previous victories in this event – Ceri Ann chalked up back to back wins with David Gourlay MBE in 2008 and ’09, Stewart won with Julie in 2021 and Nicky was the champion in 2017 with Claire Johnston from Scotland and regained the title in 2020 with Marion Purcell from Wales.
RESULT: Julie Forrest (Scot) & Nicky Brett (Eng) bt Nicole Rogers & Wayne Willgress (Eng) 7-5, 7-5.
LAST YEAR’S BEATEN SINGLES FINALIST SAFELY THROUGH TO THE 2nd ROUND
Twenty-seven-year-old Jason Banks, from the Garioch club in the North of Scotland, beaten in a thrilling title decider last year by England’s Jamie Walker, negotiated his passage into the second round of the Imagine Cruising World Indoor Singles Championship, knocking out Australian qualifier Blake Nairn form the Cambridge club in Perth 10-7, 8-4.
Nairn, a regular qualifier for Australia, made his first appearance in WBT event at Blackpool in the International Open in 2018 and followed that up with his debut appearance at these Championship four years ago and recently qualified to play in the WBT Scottish International Open in December, got off to a great start, continually putting Banks under pressure with his aggressive strikes – tempered by his delicate draw shots and scored a treble on the opening end.
Inverurie based Banks, a Graduate Mechanical Engineer at Scottish Water, gradually settled into his trademark drawing game and despite dropping that opening end treble, rolled in ten shots over six of the remaining eight ends to take the set 10-7.
In the second set, Nairn once again made the early running but a full house on the third end put Banks in the driving seat and he stayed ahead for the remainder of the match to book a 2nd round spot.
The WBT rankings dictate the draws in all of their events and Banks now waits for the winner of Monday’s first round match between defending champion Jamie Walker and Scotland’s Iain McLean – which will be shown Live on BBC Television at 3pm – and should Walker win that head to head then his second round clash will be a replay of last year’s exciting final.
RESULT: Jason Banks (Scot/16) bt Blake Nairn (Aus/Q) 10-7, 8-4.
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From tomorrow (Monday 15th) to Sunday, January 21, coverage will be available through BBC on BBC 2 and Red Button.
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