Murphy’s elusive title in reach again
Two-time champion Lisa Phillips has continued her quest to become the first bowler, male or female, to win three Australian Open singles titles as she progressed to the semi final after defeating Jackaroo Claire Turley in their quarter final meeting this morning. In a close match, Phillips held her nerve from 14-12 on the sixteenth end to secure a 21-15 win over new mum Turley, only recently returning to the game after three months off. Phillips will now play Jackaroo’s captain and Club Helensvale’s Lynsey Clarke for a spot in the final when the semi-finals kick off at 1:30pm today. Clarke defeated NSW NTC member Natalie Noronha 21-18 in a tight encounter that showcased one of the nation’s best against a rising young hope. Clarke trailed for much of the match, but drew even at 17-17 on the 22 nd end before overrunning her 18-year-old opponent to complete a three shot win. In the other half of the draw two bowlers familiar with success will play for a women’s singles final berth. After defeating 2009 champion Kelsey Cottrell in a timed out match yesterday, Malaysia’s Emma Saroji has again been involved in a prematurely concluded match, losing 14-20 to St Johns Park bowler Anne Johns as the time limit of two and a quarter hours was enforced. Johns, a three-time Australian Open triples champion, will now face Australian legend Karen Murphy who defeated close friend and Cabramatta club mate Kay Moran 21-13 in just over two hours. The highly anticipated match-up between two of the better known players left in the draw ended in a comprehensive win to Murphy, who is looking to secure her first Australian Open women’s singles title and trying to atone for last year’s finals defeat to Phillips. Moran started the better of the two, getting out to a 6-1 lead early in the match, but was unable to sustain this as Murphy demonstrated the dominance that saw her win 2013’s World Champion of Champions singles crown, coming home strong to secure the win. The women’s singles semi-final matchups begin at 1:30pm today, with the final to be played on from 6.00pm on Thursday evening.