Wayne Rittmuller has retained his national singles title at the Warwick Financial Maturity/SA Bowls Championships held in Port Elizabeth.
Rittmuller, who plays out of Stella Park (Port Natal), was pushed all the way to defeat Mowbray Bowls Club’s Joel Roebert 21-15. The match was perfectly set up to provide the next chapter in this budding new rivalry after the pair met in the 2017 semi-finals. Rittmuller, part of the Protea set-up, again prevailed although it was far from one-way traffic.
Roebert, a member of the WP A side and a decorated achiever at Western Province level, was down 2-8 but bounced back sharply to get the match to 11-13 and set up a tense finale as the duo were chasing the 21 shots required for victory on a well-supported final day at Westview Bowling Club.
With both players in the groove, Rittmuller was the first to play the big shot that ultimately paved the way for victory. Down one shot but with Roebert in close, the Stella Park star trailed the white for three shots to extend his advantage to 16-11. His Cape foe, who was beaten at this stage last year, then bounced straight back drawing two to once again reduce the deficit.
The finalists then traded shots with Rittmuller surrendering some of his lead as Roebert played the swinging hand to perfection to pick up another pair of shots with the score then 17-15. Rittmuller, down one shot on the end, then played a shot worthy of a champion as he once again moved the jack to his back three bowls to hold three.
Try as he might, Roebert, the 2016 beaten finalist, rolled a bowl in close but the umpire’s measure went in favour of the defending champion, who wrapped up the championship on the next end.
Fours: Hennie Slabbert, Gary Vermaak, Hilton Cherry, Shaun Cherry (The Woods, EP) beat Charles Joyce, Duncan Spence-Ross, Francois Steyn, Paolo Vitali (Kynysna, Eden) 21-9.
Pairs: Gavin du Toit and Tinus Crous (SA Correctional Services) defeated Alexander Miller and Tommy Potgeiter (Stella Park, Port Natal) 26-16
Senior Singles: Rudolph Killian (Lynwood, Gauteng N) beat Stan Michel (Walmer, EP) 21-14.
Women: In Edenvale, Gauteng, Colleen Piketh and Elma Davies (George, Eden) won the pairs 21-17 from Nannette Roos and Noela Dreyer (Dundee, KZN) while Esmé Kruger (CBCOB, Gauteng N) took the coveted Singles title 21-13 from Hanna Gevers (Dundee, KZN).
The fours was yet another national title for veteran Protea and former world champions Loraine Victor (Wingate CC, Gauteng N) who skipped Jean Erasmus, Gillian Bingham, Helena Potgieter (picture above) to a 24-19 victory over Boksburg, Ekurhuleni’s Cherry Mills, Tracy Graham, Eileen Frame, Ronwyn Monoyoudis.