Rednall books place in semi-finals of Women's World Singles at Potters
PUBLISHED: 19:45 20 January 2019
(C)James Bass 2017
Katherine Rednall remains on course to defend the World Indoor Bowls Women's Singles Championship at Potters Resort.
Rednall, 23, has won the title for the past two years and would be the first woman to secure the title on three consecutive occasions since Carol Ashby achieved the feat in 2004.
Now representing Norfolk IBC, the Suffolk star was under pressure in the opening set of her quarter-final against Melanie Darroch.
The Scottish debutante took full advantage of an under-par opponent and raced into an 8-3 lead before Rednall showed her fighting qualities to draw the set 9-9.
A treble on the first end of set two put Rednall in command as she began to find her line and length. Darroch replied with a double to reduce the deficit but it was Rednall who then controlled the match, winning all remaining ends for an 11-2 second set victory and a semi-final encounter with Scotland’s Julie Forrest.
Forrest is no stranger to the International Arena, but will be looking to reach her first singles final on the portable rink. She recorded a convincing 10-2, 10-3 win in her opening match against three-time semi-finalist Kerry Packwood from Wales.
Along with Rednall, compatriot Ellen Falkner will also be looking to become the first player to record four women’s singles titles.
In her quarter-final with Janice Gower she played the bowl of the Championship so far.
Falkner controlled the first set, but found herself 9-2 down in the second, with the match looking destined to go to a tie-break. But Falkner ditched a re-spotted jack for a full-house to close the gap to 6-9 and give her renewed confidence.
A single and double on the next two ends levelled at 9-9, forcing a shoot-out ninth end and Falkner maintained her composure to secure her place in the semi-final against 2011 champion Alison Merrien.
It will be Merrien’s first semi-final appearance since 2014 as she swept aside New Zealand qualifier Helen Carman. a 70-year-old debutant who adapted well to the portable rink to lead 4-0 after a couple of ends. But Guernsey’s Merrien picked up her game to see out a 10-5, 12-4 victory. Nick Brett was in inspired form as he skipped New Zealand’s Helen Carman to success over holders Lesley Doig and Jamie Chestney in the mixed pairs semi-finals.
Whether drawing, playing weight or blocking, Brett’s success rate was incredible as he and Carman secured a 6-4, 6-5 victory.
They will face Ellen Falkner and Robert Paxton in Tuesday’s final after the English duo overcame Janice Gower and Paul Foster on a tie-break.
Falkner and Paxton looked certain to win in straight-sets before Foster removed the shot bowl and stayed for a treble to take the match into over-time.
The match went down to the third and final tie-break end, with Falkner and Paxton securing the crucial shot and an 8-4, 5-6, 2-1 victory.
Norfolk’s Wayne Willgress will not be replicating his run to the semi-final of 12-months-ago as he suffered a first round defeat to Andy Thomson in the Open Singles.
In a low-scoring first set Thomson took control to secure it 7-4, with Willgress responding well for an 8-1 lead in the second.
Thomson fought back to reduce the deficit to 7-9 with an end to play before Willgress calmly drew the shot when facing match-point against.
Thomson’s win keeps his hopes alive of staying in the world’s top 16 as he awaits the winner of Greg Harlow or Australia’s Brendan Egan in round two.
The men’s pairs final takes centre stage today (1pm) with Alex Marshall and Paul Foster taking on Greg Harlow and Nick Brett.