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Bowls pair battle well in nationals

PUBLISHED: 11:34 23 April 2010 | UPDATED: 09:36 01 August 2010

Louise Catchpole and Kirsty Clarke from the Beccles Indoor Bowls Club played in the National Finals in the Ladies' Unbadged Pairs and showed that they can compete at the highest level, reaching the semi-finals.

Louise Catchpole and Kirsty Clarke from the Beccles Indoor Bowls Club played in the National Finals in the Ladies' Unbadged Pairs and showed that they can compete at the highest level, reaching the semi-finals.

Playing their first game at the National last 16 stage against a pair from York, the Beccles players found themselves up against a very experienced partnership who represent Yorkshire on a regular basis.

The Beccles players got off to a good start, keeping the game tight but playing a very controlled game and showing their full potential to compete at this level.

Kirsty was continually placing their opponents under pressure with some very good lead bowling backed up at skip by Louise, who was adding to any score.

The good bowling of the Beccles pair eventually told when they picked up a score of six shots, to give them an overall lead of five shots. The game remained close but York were unable to narrow the gap.

On the 20th end the Beccles pair appeared to be in trouble, York held two or three shots which could have meant Beccles going into the last end only two or three shots in front. However Louise, with the last bowl of the end, managed to turn this over into a score of two for Beccles. York with one end left to play immediately conceded the game.

This victory then placed the Beccles pairings into the quarter-finals where they were up against Royal Tunbridge Wells, again playing a skip who represents Kent at a senior level. The Beccles pairing totally dominated the game from the start.

Both players delivered excellent bowls, outplaying their opponents at every stage of the game, showing skill levels that won over the hearts of the spectators who were engrossed at the standard of bowls being played.

Kirsty and Louise ran out winners by 28-8 with the Kent pairing conceding the game with three ends left to play and looked rather shell-shocked.

Beccles moved into their semi-final where their opponents were Torquay United, Sophie Tolchard and Amanda Higginbotham.

The Beccles girls got off to a slow start and found themselves trailing by 8-1 after six ends. However they kept playing their game and pulled the score back within four shots and for a stage started to dominate the game. Two very good shots by the Torquay skip when Beccles were holding large scores on two ends swung the game in their favour.

Beccles eventually lost the semi- final, but this was a great achievement by Kirsty and Louise, both of whom showed they were not out of place at a senior national level.

This was their first attempt as a partnership for a senior title - on this showing, in the coming years they will not be too far away.

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