Eagles and Taylor Outlast Teammates in the Dyenamic WA Men’s State Pairs

by Pieter Harris

The Dyenamic WA Men’s State Pairs Finals was both a statement for the Sorrento Bowling Club and the Over 60’s Bowlers in extreme heat at the Osborne Park Bowling Club on Tuesday.

Bruce Eagles and Greg Taylor claimed their own and the Sorrento Bowling Club’s first WA Men’s State Pairs title when they defeated clubmates Chris Lander and Ross Cunningham in the final.

In the first semi-final, Eagles and Taylor jumped out to a five-nil lead in their matchup against Blake Nairn (Cambridge) and Darren Wilkinson (Bunbury). A couple of quick replies to Nairn made it 4-5 before Eagles won six ends in a row to blow the game open at 13-4 after 10 ends. A couple of two’s put Nairn within touch at 9-16 with three ends to play, but as can happen when chasing numbers in a hurry, Nairn trying to trail the jack to make a number saw it go the wrong way and instead dropped a five to put the game out of reach.

Lander and Cunningham were made to work hard for much of their semi-final against Charlie Slavich (Doubleview) and Corey Bessant (Mt Lawley), 3-3 after 3 ends, 5-5 after 5 ends and 7-6 after 8 ends saw the game seesawing from team to team. Lander/Cunningham began their break by winning four ends in a row beginning with a five on the 11th end and concluding with a two on the 14th end ballooning the lead out to 19-7. Slavich and Bessant stepped up their game and took consecutive three’s to give them hope going into the last two ends six behind, but Lander and Cunningham were up to the task and held their nerve winning both the last ends despite the severe pressure they were being put under.

The final began in not only hot conditions but also great spirits with the Sorrento Bowling Club guaranteed to be welcoming home four worthy finalists in the near year. Also for the first time, in everybody’s memory, the Over 60’s were reminding the bowling world of their collective championship credentials with all four finalists proudly acknowledging their birth certificates.

The first three ends saw the teams feel each other out resulting in singles before Eagles and Taylor made the first telling blow by grabbing a three and a 5-1 lead. All players were in the zone and a high standard final was the result but the player making the most impact was Bruce Eagles. Greg Taylor and Ross Cunningham were having a great battle in the lead and thirds position and Chris Lander was doing a great job in the second and skips position but Eagles was providing telling blows with his consistency on every end. For much of the game, both teams won multiple ends in a row. Lander won singles on the 5th and 6th ends but Eagles took a three and single on the 7th and 8th end. Two more singles from Lander saw a 5-9 advantage to Eagles even though both teams had won five ends each after 10 ends of the 18 end game. For the final 8 ends, the teams traded blows but again it was Lander winning singles and Eagles grabbing an occasional double. Bruce Eagles and Greg Taylor grabbed a single on the 11th end to start the trading and finished the game with a single on the last end to win the game 16-8 and take home the title.