Tuross Head Bowling Club has adopted the option of playing the 2021 Fours Championship as an Open Gender event in line with the significant changes in the sport following the amalgamation of Bowls NSW and Women’s Bowls NSW. The decision has been vindicated with increased nominations and more competitive teams.

Three first round matches have been played with some great bowls on display. In a very tight, low scoring affair Di and Mick Challice and Denise and Bruce Lidbury finished well to just defeat Marg and Ray Downey, Allan Etheredge and Joel Hilliard. The game was close for the full 21 ends – the widest margin was just 4 shots when Lidbury led 10 – 6 after 11 ends. Hilliard fought back and by the 15th end grabbed the lead at 12 – 11. However, by the 20th end Lidbury had hit the front at 15 – 14.

The last end was very close. Hilliard’s team held the shot as the skips went to the mat to play their last bowls. In an effort to gain the extra shot for victory, Hilliard was slightly off line and he unfortunately moved his shot bowl! As a result Lidbury held on to win a very good game 16 – 14 and move into the next round.

Bruce Magilton, Jonathan Green, Irene Macdonald and John Monks played Lou Kozlik, Ben Hewison and Doug and Carol Williams. On the back of some excellent bowls from Irene Macdonald, Monks’ side dominated the first half of the game leading 13 – 4 after 11 ends. However, Williams struck back strongly in the next three ends to reduce the margin to just 13 -12 after 14 ends. The next section of the game was very tight with Monks ahead 18 – 16 after 19 ends. His side was able to win the last two ends to stay in the competition with a 20 – 16 win.

The third match followed a similar pattern. The team of Len, Rita and Noel Downie and Chris Roxby had a great start in their clash with Alan Skelton, Sue Fahey, John Wagstaff and Stuart Graham. Leading the way, Noel Downie steered his side to a dominant position of 14 – 3 after 8 ends. It was then the turn of Graham’s team to grab the momentum. They won the next 6 ends to draw level at 14 all after 14 ends.

A score of 5 shots on the 15th end proved crucial as Downie regained the lead. His side was able to consolidate their position over the next three ends and ended up running out winners by 25 – 17.