Belfast Telegraph

Natalie Melmore's crown slips as she fails to get going

By Wayne Gardiner

Torquay's Natalie Melmore failed to defend her title in the Commonwealth Games lawn bowls singles as she was comprehensively beaten by Jo Edwards.

New Zealander Edwards appeared to be showing no mercy to the 24-year-old as she opened up a 17-4 lead, but Melmore responded to make a game of it.

She got back to 20-15 from 20-12 as the looming 21-point winning post seemed to make Edwards freeze.

She had left herself too much to do, though, and Edwards rode out the wobble to get over the line at 21-15 and comfortably better her previous singles best at the Games.

A gold medal winner in the pairs 12 years ago, she wound up 13th in her one and only previous singles appearance in Melbourne in 2006, and adds this crown to her World Cup win in 2013, with Melmore settling for silver.

Melmore said: "Obviously I'm disappointed but at the end of the day Jo played brilliantly.

"I got gold four years ago and silver now. I can't really complain."

Melmore's loss was a second blow of the day for the English bowlers after their men's pair were pipped by Scotland in a thrilling semi-final.

Alex Marshall hailed his final shots as the best he had ever played as the home nation prevailed 16-15.

England trailed 15-14 going into the final end but Marshall – known in the sport as 'Tattie' – earned a final spot against Malaysia.

It sparked jubilant scenes at a damp Kelvingrove, with Marshall and partner Paul Foster celebrating a win over the Auld Enemy, for whom Andrew Knapper and Sam Tolchard were left stunned.

Scotland Bowls certainly enjoyed the moment on Twitter, saying: "Mere mortals can only dream of playing the last two bowls of that game by Tattie Marshall".

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