JO EDWARDS and Val Smith have been defeated in the final of the women’s pairs at the bowls world championships in Adelaide.
The defending champions were beaten 16-12 by Australia’s Kelsey Cottrell and Rebecca Quail, having lost to the same combination on the opening day 17-11.
The winning duo started strongly, leading 4-0 early on, before Smith and Edwards hauled the score back to 5-5.
The Australians then made their move, winning seven consecutive points by the end of the 10th end.
Edwards and Smith again came back, narrowing the score to 14-12, but Quail scored a double to leave the Kiwis needing at least a three to extend the match.
Edwards went close to pushing the match into an extra end, but Quail covered the advantage and turned it into a one shot gain.
“It’s all about putting pressure on the opposition and they played really good bowls. I hoped to be a wee bit more pressure on there but I couldn’t,” Edwards told Fairfax NZ.
“They played consistently throughout the game,” added Smith, “they played strong and made it difficult for us.”
Edwards was gunning for her third pairs gold in a row, having won with Sharon Sims in 2004 and Smith in Christchurch four years later.
The men’s triple of Tony Grantham, Matt Gallop and Ali Forsyth claimed bronze after also finding the Australians too good.
The women’s triple of Lisa White, Jan Khan and Mandy Boyd are into their final, also against Australia.
Smith is still in the running to defend her singles title, playing Canada in the semifinals.