By Lachlan Williams
The second day of 2022 Commonwealth Games action at Leamington Spa was filled with highs and lows for the Australian Jackaroos, with quarter-finals booked for some disciplines, while others bowed out of their campaigns.
Ellen Ryan and the men’s triples side will continue their pursuit of success, advancing to quarter finals to be played on Sunday.
The women’s fours side’s gold medal defence came to an end while the men’s pairs were also unable to move on through the competition.
The men’s and women’s para sides enjoyed strong days, setting themselves up for a big push towards the knockout rounds.
A gutsy four-shot win in the final round-robin match was enough for Ellen Ryan to secure her place in the knockout stages of the women’s singles at Leamington Spa.
Taking on Canada’s Jordan Kos, Ryan sat precariously in second place of her group heading into the final round, with a win guaranteeing her of a quarter final place.
Kos started the better in the search of her first win, leading 10-3 at one stage of the contest.
With a group stage exit potentially looming, Ryan showed her composure to chip away at the deficit and level things at 11-11, before taking the lead at 18-16.
A change of mat length proved key for Ryan, bringing the mat up and putting the jack back to help shift the momentum in her favour.
“I knew I could do it so I just stuck in there,” Ryan said.
“Kazza (Karen Murphy) was great behind the rink, (she) always backs me. I’m thrilled to be in the quarter finals.”
Ryan will have to wait to find out her opponent, with women’s singles sectional play to be completed on Sunday morning.
R3: def Canada 21-17
It wasn’t to be for the Jackaroos in the men’s pairs, with South Africa too good in the final pool match to end Australia’s campaign.
Corey Wedlock and Aaron Wilson needed a win to advance to the knockout stages, but fell nine shots short against a formidable South African side.
South Africa jumped out of the blocks and made it tough for the Australians to find a way back, as they secured a third win to top Group D. Fiji finished with two wins to sit second in the group.
Australia managed one win and two losses.
Wilson will now prepare for his singles gold medal defence starting Tuesday, while Wedlock will join the fours team, also on Tuesday.
R3: def by South Africa 8-17
Final standings: 3rd in pool. 1 win, 2 losses. +2 shot difference.
It was a clean sweep in pool play for Australia’s men’s triples side, after a tight one-shot win over Jersey in their final pool play match.
Both sides entered the match with two wins to their name, but it was the trio of Barrie Lester, Carl Healey and Ben Twist that took the chocolates.
The Aussies held the slight ascendancy for the majority of the contest, but after dropping a three on the third last end had to fire back, returning favour with a three of their own on the penultimate end which was enough to secure victory.
Australia will face off against Malaysia in the quarter finals. Malaysia won one match in a difficult group, advancing on shot difference.
The winner of Australia-Malaysia will play the winner of Fiji-Malta in the semi final.
R3: def Jersey 15-14
Australia’s defence of its 2018 Commonwealth Games women’s fours gold medal has come to an end, following a tough loss at the hands of Scotland.
The Jackaroos entered the match needing a win or a Fiji loss to Botswana to progress to the knockout stages of the event, having won one match and drawn another on day one of play.
The Scots had nothing to lose, unable to progress to the quarter finals, and applied plenty of pressure against the Aussies.
Australia jumped out to an early 3-0 lead, but were unable to hit the front after the third end as the Scots ran away to a seven-shot win.
There was a small glimmer of hope as Botswana lead Fiji by a shot heading into the final end of their respective match, but a clutch two shots at the close of play was enough to secure the Fijians a memorable quarter final berth.
Botswana and Fiji advance from Group A.
The Aussies finished with one win, one draw and a loss.
Lynsey Clarke, Rebecca Van Asch and Natasha Van Eldik will regroup to compete in the triples on Tuesday, while Kristina Krstic will join Ellen Ryan in the pairs, also on Tuesday.
R3: def by Scotland 9-16
Final standings: 3rd in pool. 1 win, 1 draw, 1 loss. -1 shot difference.
Para Men’s Pairs
Australia has locked itself in the knockout stages of the men’s para pairs event, after a solid day of play on Saturday.
Having lead for all but one end, the Aussies suffered a heartbreaking loss to England in the opening game of the day, but will take plenty away from an impressive performance.
Damien Delgado and Chris Flavel bounced back in style against Scotland in their fourth match of the Games, leading from start to finish to secure their second win and lock in a spot inside the top four.
They will take on Wales on Sunday, looking to continue their winning form before the semi finals on Monday.
R3: def by England 12-13
R4: def Scotland 21-15
Para Women’s Pairs
Cheryl Lindfield and Serena Bonnell continued their impressive start to the Games, with two thumping wins on Saturday.
The first came over South Africa in the second session of the day. It was a patient buildup from the Jackaroos, leading by just one shot after seven ends, before putting on the pressure in the second half of the contest.
The Australians went on a 12-2 scoring run, securing win number two by 11 shots.
They rounded out the day with a Trans Tasman clash against New Zealand. Just as the para men did yesterday, Lindfield and Bonnell claimed victory against the Kiwis.
The Aussies remain the only unbeaten side in the para women’s competition, with only England left to play tomorrow before knockout play commences on Monday.
R3: def South Africa 18-7
R4: def New Zealand 19-8