Holt snares semi, Worsnop into playoffs
Former English international turned Australian representative David Holt survived a high pressure final sectional match to book a spot in Wednesday’s World Cup semi-finals at Warilla Bowling Club, Mike Driscoll reports for the Illawarra Mercury.
Holt, who joined three time champion Jeremy Henry as the Australian reps after winning the Australian Indoor last year, beat Ireland’s Ian McClure 9-4, 10-8 in their round nine match.
Holt has a bye in the final two rounds and will finish with an 8-1 win/loss record in section 1 to claim the automatic semi-final spot.
Holt’s only defeat was to New Zealander Ali Forsyth, 7-7, 7-10, in round seven and he believes under the circumstances the victory over fellow title contender McClure was his best of the tournament.
“Given the pressure and what was at stake, it’s a big win,” Holt said.
“I looked at the standings on Sunday night and if I lost to Ireland 2-0 there was a chance I could miss out on the play-off [top three] altogether.
“The win gave me the section but a loss could have put me out of the event, so there was plenty at stake.”
While pleased to earn the prized automatic semi-final spot, Holt said the men’s singles title was wide open.
“There’s many contenders and it’ll come down to who plays well on the day.
“Jeremy [Henry] has the great record here of three straight wins but it’s really open.
“On my side Ali [Forsyth] has a win over me, while Ian [McClure] played a great match against me and there’s a few guys on the other section to contend with as well.’’
Meanwhile, defending champion Jeremy Henry on Monday beat the previously undefeated Todd Priaulx of Guersney 10-9, 15-2 in a a vital section two match.
Henry (7-1) moved into second spot on count-back from Priaulx (7-1) with both players chasing the undefeated Iain McLean of Scotland who moved to 8-0 by beating Hong Kong China’s Stephen Chan 16-3, 14-4 in their two sets of nine ends.
With only Tuesday morning’s round remaining, McLean, Henry and Priaulx are fighting over top spot and direct passage to the semi-finals.
Meanwhile, Towradgi Park member Pete Bonsor is representing Spain for the third time at the World Cup and will narrowly miss the playoff top three in section 1, following a tight 8-6, 6-6 loss to Forsyth on Monday.
Bonsor played for Spain in the 2009 World Cup Singles and finished third and was fifth in 2008.
He will return home to Wollongong following the World Champion of Champions in Helensvale, Queensland in October.
Meanwhile, four-time women’s World Cup champion Jo Edwards moved a step closer towards another title after clinching her section yesterday evening.
Edwards beat South Africa’s Colleen Piketh 5-5, 10-5 in their top of the table match, to make it seven straight wins in her section 1.
Australian singles representative Jamie-Lee Worsnop also advanced to the playoffs, after defeating Fiji’s Radhika Prasad 17-4 3-9 5-1 in her final section two match.
18 year-old Worsnop finished third in her section, two shots behind Canada’s Kelly McKerihen, and now faces Piketh in the elimination match – with the winner to play Malaysia’s Siti Zalina Ahmad in the semi-final.
The World Cup features players from 21 nations with Warilla hosting the event on their indoor facility for a 10th straight year.
The winner of each of the two sections in the men’s and women’s draw advance to the semi-finals, while the second and third-placed bowlers in each section meet in the playoffs on Tuesday afternoon.
Both women’s semi-finals and one men’s semi-final are on Wednesday.
The second men’s semi is Thursday morning followed by the women’s final and then the men’s final.