28 January, 2017
There will be no new name of this year’s ‘Just.’ World Indoor Singles championship with former champions Paul Foster and Greg Harlow going head to head at Potters in Norfolk in the title decider today – in what will be a replay of the first WBT ranking event of the season which went Harlow’s way in the Scottish International Open at Perth in November.
In the semi-finals a determined and focused Foster ended the giant killing run of number 15 seed Les Gillett, who had accounted for Scotland’s golden boys Alex Marshall followed by Darren Burnett 11-4, 5-5.
Foster, ranked 6 and who last won the title in 2011, will have his sights set on taking the title for a fifth time and narrow the gap between himself and best friend Alex Marshall who holds the record with six.
Against Gillett he stormed home in the opening set. He trailed 4-3 but then scored eight shots over the closing five ends then in the second held off a gritty challenge from the Englishman to draw the set 5-5 and win by one and a half sets to a half.
“I felt good going into the game and was satisfied that I coped with what Les threw at me. In the second set he got off to a good start but I strung a 1, 2 and 1 to go 5-3 up. The last two ends were tough but I managed to get over the line and that’s all that matters” said Foster.
In the other semi-final Harlow, for the third match in succession won through with a forehand runner on the last end and with the last bowl in a tiebreak, this time ending hopes of an all-Scottish final when he edged out Blantyre’s Stewart Anderson, the champion in 2013, 6-7, 9-7, 2-1.
Anderson trailed 6-2 with three ends remaining in the first set and managed to string together a single and two doubles. He looked in control in the second at 6-3 at the halfway stage, but a slack two ends let Harlow back into contention and he won the set with a single on the last.
Both players won an end each in the tie break and Anderson held a match lie on the last but once again that deadly forehand runner counted the crucial shot and that other place in the final.
“I didn’t play as well in this match as I did against Nicky Brett. I didn’t play that well in the first set and stole it and that was probably the story in the second. I lost my weight a wee bit nearing the end of the second set and let Greg in”.