foster & gower in great scrap and get a place in the mixed pairs semi finals

18 January, 2019

Last quarter final of the day saw Scotland’s Paul Foster MBE paired with England’s Janice Gower. Foster is five times World Indoor Champion, four times World Indoor Pairs Champion and twice World Indoor Mixed Pairs Champion, Gower is the reigning English Indoor Ladies Singles Champion and the top lady player in the Professional Bowls Association rankings. They faced Scotland pair of David Gourlay MBE and Melanie Darroch. Gourlay is of course a previous World Indoor Singles Champion, three times a World Pairs Champion and also the World Indoor Mixed Pairs three times, Darroch won her place through the Professional Bowls Association qualifiers for the events here and is also an accomplished Scots player.

Melanie Darroch, Paul Foster MBE, Janice Gower, David Gourlay MBE

First set and it started off well with all four players playing well with great bowls from all four players. Foster/Gower held the first end with shot but it was Gourlay that played a great last bowl to take one shot, second end and again it was tight and a measure gave Foster/Gower one shot. End three and again Foster/Gower held but again Gourlay played a fantastic bowl and took a single count. End four and the situation was reversed as Foster played in and took a double. Ends five and six each pair had a single count each taking the scoreline 4,3 in Foster/Gowers favour. Final end seven all came down to a measure for shot-it went to Gourlay/Darroch and set score as a tied end at 4 all.

Paul Foster MBE & Janice Gower

Second set developed a great tussle between the two leads of Gower and Darroch and it was great to see the audience also getting involved with a few chuckles at the camaraderie shown on the rink between the leads and skips throughout the second set. At the business end as skips both Foster and Gourlay had great ends between them with a few laughs and chuckles at some of the leads instructions as to what shot to play, however again the standard of bowls from all four was high with great bowls heads developed and really good shots played by both skips throughout. It was Foster that took ends one and two with singles, end three it was Gourlay with a brilliant single. Then it was Foster that just seemed to raise a slight gear and he got into his stride and took end four with a double, a great little nudge and three good bowls for a four in end five and finished off in style with a single in end six to take the second set and match 4,4 – 9,1. It is Paul Foster MBE and Janice Gower that go through to the semi finals on Sunday to face Robert Paxton and Ellen Falkner.

Melanie Darroch & David Gourlay MBE