Boyd sets early pace in singles
30 Dec 2014
Written by Grant Hassall for Taranaki Daily News
New Zealand representative Mandy Boyd (Burnside) sounded a warning on the opening day of the New Zealand bowls championships on the North Shore on Sunday.
Playing qualifying in the women's singles, Boyd, a bronze medallist at Glasgow earlier in the year, went through unbeaten.
That in itself is no great achievement for one of the classiest women players in the country. But it was the quality of Boyd's results over strong opponents that will be worrying her main opponents come Wednesday's post-section play.
Boyd beat Marilyn McLeod (Tauranga South), who last month won the New Zealand open singles, 21-14, Lisa Helming (Birkenhead) 21-7 and Selina Goddard (Carlton Cornwall) 21-8.
Goddard was in Boyd's team at the Commonwealth Games.
Both McLeod and Goddard were knocked out during the day, with the latter losing her final match. They were joined on the scrapheap by Helen King (Victoria), the defending champion.
King dropped her third match 21-16 to Sandra Keith (Dunsandel) - who looms as Boyd's biggest threat - and then fell 21-17 to Sally Stirling (Dargaville).
The major surprise in the men's pairs was the elimination of Steve Cox (Riverhead) and Neil Fisher (Browns Bay). The North Harbour duo, who were among the favourites, lost all three games.
Defending champion Michael Nagy (Taren Point), this time playing with Taylor Duncan (Carlton Cornwall), had two wins, as did the reunited pairing of Richard Girvan (Onehunga) and Danny O'Connor (Birkenhead).