Australia scrapes home in Test thriller
In one of the most exciting bowls Test matches seen for many years, Australia narrowly scraped home to score a heart stopping 2-1 win over Wales in the international Tri Series Test match at Tweed Heads Bowls Club yesterday.
After losing the opening pairs rubber 4-7 10-4 2-0, the scene was set for a thrilling conclusion to the Test when Australian skip Mark Casey defeated his Wales opponent Ian Slade in the singles 11-4 10-4.
While it was the Wales combination of Slade, Martin Selway and Andrew Atwood that ran away with the first set of the deciding triples rubber 10-5, Australia, thanks to some exceptional bowls under extreme pressure from Gold Coaster Nathan Rice, narrowly won the second set 6-5.
Cool under pressure, the Australian combination of Casey, Rice and Bill Cornehls produced some exceptional deliveries at crucial times to literally snatch victory on the final end of the tie-breaker.
"The boys kept us on the edge of our seats all day," said Australian coach Cameron Curtis.
"In the end we were lucky to get away with the result.
"Fortunately Nathan played a huge shot on the final end of the second set and a few more times in the tie-break to get us over the line. "As they say, it's not how you play them, but when you play them and Nathan's timing was perfect."
After comfortably defeating New Zealand the previous day 3-0, Curtis said the Australians went into yesterday's Test confident of success.
Australia has not lost a Test match at home since April last year, defeating New Zealand four times, Scotland on three occasions, Wales twice, and South Africa, Ireland and England.