Australia and England have split the honours of the opening session, in their international test series at Broadbeach Bowls Club on the Gold Coast.
The three-day test series against the Old Enemy commenced this morning, with both nations claiming three wins from the six matches contested, in the first of three sessions staged today.
In order to accommodate seven players from each team, one triples and two pairs matches were staged for each gender.
In the women’s rubbers, the triples team of Kristina Kristic, Linsey Clarke and Rebecca Van Asch skipped away to an early lead against Sophie Tolchard, Wendy King and Sian Honnor, leading 7-3 after 5 ends, but were overcome 19-12 in a quality contest.
Kelsey Cottrell and Karen Murphy trailed Katherine Rednall and Ellen Faulkner, 1-4 after three ends, before a run of 7 shots over the next three ends saw Australia wrestle control, 8-4 after 7 ends.
The ensuing ends were a battle of great leading and excellent conversions with few multiples scored, Australia winning the battle 16-13.
The other Australian pairing of Ellen Ryan and Natasha Scott took to the green against Rebecca Field and Natalie Chestney, which was evenly poised at 13 all after 11 ends, speaking volumes of the quality of play.
From this point, the English pairing held sway, prevailing 22-16.
In the men’s rubbers, Ray Pearse, debutant Corey Wedlock and Aron Sherriff produced a clinical 20-12 victory against current world champions Jamie Walker, Andy Knapper and Robert Paxton.
South Australian duo of Wayne Ruediger and debutant Scott Thulborn faced off against David Bolt and Sam Tolchard.
The scoreline in this match did not reflect the closeness of the game in any way, with the English were supreme in converting heads to their favour and took a handy victory 26-8.
Our final match-up was the reigning world champions Brett Wilkie and Aaron Wilson against Louis Ridout and Jamie Chestney.
The champion pairing got out of the blocks quickly, reaching a 14-6 lead after 12, with the game still to be won the play stepped up a notch from both teams with some amazing shots being traded across the combatants.
The Australians held on for an 18-13 victory.
The second of three sessions staged for the first test commenced at 12.00pm, which will see each gender compete in singles, pairs and fours.
The third session will be played from 2.45pm, with each gender playing one singles and two triples rubbers.