Blues keep their title defence alive
NSW have snatched an unbelievable victory from the jaws of defeat during an epic girls’ triples encounter against Western Australia this afternoon in Nightcliff, Darwin. The Blues continued their barnstorming of the Australia Under-18 Championships with a further three wins from as many rubbers during the second session’s play, but it was the gritty performance of Laren Shaw, Molly Wilton and Jamie-Lee Worsnop that could make all the difference to the state’s final placement when post sectional matches happen on Thursday. With the top place getters from each pool progressing through to the gold medal match following three round-robin games, the Australian Under-18 Championships is an unforgiving battlefield, with little respite for those who fail to win all of their encounters. The NSW trio were quick to hit the scoreboard, picking up a shot on the opening end, but fell away sharply as the Sandgropers’ Kellie Ainsworth, Amelia Axford and Danya Cant powered ahead to a 6 shot margin, 12-6, after 10 ends. The new-look NSW team that claimed gold last year quickly underlined their own title credentials, clinching a heroic come-from-behind victory on the back of 8 shots over three of the last four ends. In the same side of their draw, Victoria also remains undefeated after the first round, with a 16-10 win over host state Northern Territory, while on the opposite side of the table, Queensland got the early ascendancy over South Australia 23-14, and ACT pipped Tasmania 22-16 to take second spot. In the girls pairs, last year’s triples gold medallist Ellen Ryan combined with pairs defending champion Dawn Hayman to produce a 29-11 result over their Western Australian opponents to top their standings, while the Big V posted a comprehensive 23-14 win over the Top End, and in the opposite side of the girls’ pairs section, Queensland got the better of South Australia 21-11 to gain the early lead, while Tasmania and ACT tied 15-all. It was a similar scenario that played out in the boys’ pairs event, with Isaac Rayner and Jono Davis leading the charge for the Blues with a 27-8 win against WA, Victoria trailing them in second place with a 23-9 victory of NT, while the Maroons’ Jacob Nelson and Nic Gosley remain well placed to mount their title attack with a 23-10 win over the Croweaters. Click here for full results from the Australian Under-18 Championships from Nightcliff, Northern Territory. Caption: It was high fives all round after NSW girls’ triples stunning victory.