LORNA SMITH continues to make a strong challenge for the ladies’ World Champion of Champions outdoor bowls title in Christchurch, New Zealand, with Scotland’s banner carrier from the Linlithgow club in West Lothian remaining undefeated after nine games.
Smith stayed on course to top her qualifying section following excellent Day 3 wins over Hong Kong China (14-2, 12-5), Guernsey (7-4, 10-5), Spain (13-4, 10-3) and Cyprus (8-5, 11-3).
The Scottish champion then faced her stiffest test to date against Norfolk Islands legend Carmen Anderson in the opening match of Day 4, with both players bidding to extend undefeated records to nine victories.
The battle between the joint leaders saw Smith gain command of the opening set to win it 11-4, but Anderson hit back to capture the second 9-6 before a thrilling tie break went 2-1 in favour of Smith.
Meanwhile, Alastair White of Kelso kept himself in the frame for landing the gents title with a hat-trick of Day 3 wins over Ireland (10-5, 9-6), Norfolk Islands (16-6, 13-3), and Macau (12-4, 4-10, 4-2).
Australia tops his section, but White is sitting in joint-second place, sharing it with Jersey and Ireland.
Elsewhere, Balbardie IBC continue to go great guns in the gents C section of Division 1 of the national indoor bowls league and the Bathgate team powered to their fifth win in a row with a commanding 93-69 away to Berwickshire.
There were wins on the rinks skipped by Graeme Byrne, Sandy McDougall and Ewan Shearer, with Walter McDougall suffering a single-figure defeat. Balbardie edged the first phase 31-28, won the second 32-22 and took the third 30-19.
“This is a pleasing win for us and keeps us firmly in the driving seat with a four-point lead over our chief rivals Headwell, who lost away to Teviotdale,” reflected team manager Bill Black.