LEAMINGTON SPA, ENGLAND - AUGUST 01: Ellen Ryan of Team Australia celebrates their victory in Women's Singles - Gold Medal Match between Guernsey and Australia on day four of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games at Victoria Park on August 01, 2022 on the Leamington Spa, England. (Photo by Nathan Stirk/2022 Getty Images)

2022 Commonwealth Games: Day 4 wrap

by Lachlan Williams

Monday, August 1, 2022 will go down as one of the more iconic in Australian lawn bowls history, after a historic gold medal win, as well as silver success among other positives.

Ellen Ryan wrote her name into the history books by claiming the women’s singles gold medal on Monday afternoon.

Ryan becomes the first Australian to win a Commonwealth Games gold medal in the UK, as well as the first to win the women’s singles crown.

Earlier in the day, Australia’s men’s triples side suffered a heart-breaking yet gallant two-shot loss in the final against England.

There was plenty of para action taking place too, with both men’s and women’s para pairs teams successful in their semis to advance to their respective finals.

The mixed visual-impaired pairs team also continued their solid campaign.

Check out how each discipline fared below.

Women’s Singles

It was a win for the ages as Ellen Ryan claimed a historic victory in the women’s singles competition at Royal Leamington Spa on Monday.

Ryan came into the day needing to get past Norfolk Island’s Shae Wilson in the semi final, a task that proved difficult.

Ryan jumped out of the blocks to a 9-0 lead, but Wilson fought back to take the ascendancy for herself.

Scores moved to 17 apiece before Ryan collected a four to close out the match and set up a final berth against Guernsey’s Lucy Beere.

Beere and Ryan met earlier in the competition in pool play, with the Guernsey bowler winning by 10 shots.

The final appeared as if it could be following a similar trajectory, with Beere dominant from the outset to lead 10-2 at one point.

Just as she has done all week, the self-proclaimed ‘comeback kid’ of Australia failed to let the occasion get to her, edging her way back into the match.

“She started off really well, I was scratching around with my line and length,” Ryan said.

“I knew I had to get my first bowl there and get a couple of runs on the board.

“I always knew I could do it, (just) stayed positive.”

Just as Ryan took a 12-11 lead, the momentum swung once again as Beere settled back into the match to take back the lead.

But where Beere operated sporadically in singles, Ryan picked up several multiples in the closing stages to move within touching distance of a historic win.

With Ryan needing just one to win on the final end, and the Australian holding shot, Beere’s final weighted attempt missed to send the Australian fans into raptures.

Tears were shed as Ryan celebrated the win with rinkside coach and mentor Karen Murphy, before joining her teammates, mum and partner in the stands.

“I don’t think this has really sunk in,” Ryan said after the win.

“I’m so happy. To all the supporters back home, Aussies, you guys are amazing.”

Ryan was full of praise for the people who helped get her to the position she is in, from family, to friends, to previous coaches and her ‘Jackaroos family’.

“What a team to be part of,” she said.

It was only the second time an Australian had featured in a women’s singles Commonwealth Games final (Murphy the first in 2002).

Final result: def Lucy Beere (Guernsey) 21-17

SF result: def Shae Wilson (Norfolk Island) 21-17

Men’s Triples

Australia’s men’s triples side were close but fell just short against rivals England in a final to remember on Monday, coming from the clouds to force a finish for the ages.

Taking on Fiji in a morning semi final, the Jackaroos looked comfortable, continuing their dominant form to fire away to a 13-shot win and set up a tantalising final with England in front of a passionate crowd at Victoria Park.

Despite playing quite well, the Australians had to wait until the eighth end to put a score on the board, with England scoring the first eight shots of the match to take important early momentum.

With England picking up a four on the ninth end and moving to 12-1, things looked dire for Australia.

Barrie Lester, Carl Healey and Ben Twist showed trademark Aussie spirit and fight however, and clawed their way back into the game, end by end, bowl by bowl.

Keeping the English scoreless for seven consecutive ends, Australia managed to level the scores at 12 each. Lester lead strong all match, Healey lifted to nullify the impact of an impressive Nick Brett, and Twist converted well to keep the game alive.

With England scoring a one on the penultimate end, Australia would trail but have last bowl to close out the game.

The Aussies held shot multiple times throughout the final end, but England had the answers, with skipper Jamie Chestney enormous to his side’s success.

Twist looked to attack the head with his final bowl, just missing as England came away two-shot winners.

The silver medals are the first Commonwealth Games silverware for Healey and Twist, while veteran Lester adds a fourth medal to his collection.

“It means everything, you play the game for these sorts of moments,” Twist said.

“I’m proud of our fight in particular. We dug deep and showed that Aussie spirit to get back into the match.”

Healey said the experience was one he has dreamt about.

“You dream of these things about playing Comm games when you’re younger. When you’re here you sometimes just don’t believe it,” he said.

At his third Commonwealth Games, Lester said there is plenty to take away from the event to go with the silver medal.

“Making new friends for life, that’s something that can’t be taken away from us now,” he said.

Final result: def by England 12-14

SF result: def Fiji 26-13

Para Men’s Pairs

The Jackaroos were clinical in their para men’s pairs semi final on Monday, romping their way to a final appearance.

Taking on England, the only team they lost to in pool play, Damien Delgado and Chris Flavel showed intent right from the start.

With a focus on strong early bowls and building positive heads, Delgado was on fire to nullify the English crowd and get on top from the start.

A 12-0 run in seven ends was crucial to setting the duo up towards a final berth, going on to end the match two ends early.

Australia now play Scotland in the final on Tuesday, who worked hard to overcome New Zealand in their semi final.

Australia edged out Scotland by six-shots earlier in the week.

SF: def England 17-4

Final schedule: v Scotland on Tuesday, August 2 @ 4.15pm BST (1.15am AEST)

Para Women’s Pairs

Australia rounded out its para women’s pairs round robin play with its first loss on Sunday.

Cheryl Lindfield and Serena Bonnell were unable to keep up with opponents England, going down by 17 shots for their first loss of the week.

The loss dropped Australia to third in the standings, now set to take on second-placed South Africa in the semi final.

England meet Scotland in the other semi.

The Aussies took an 11-shot victory over South Africa when they met on Saturday.

R5: def by England 5-22

Final schedule: v South Africa on Monday, August 1 @ 8.30am BST (5.30pm AEST)

Para Mixed Pairs

It was a mixed bag of results for Helen Boardman and Jake Fehlberg on day four of play as para mixed pairs round robin play continued.

They started the day with an impressive come from behind victory over England, before falling just two-shots short to a strong Scottish team in the afternoon.

They will look to bounce back against Wales on Tuesday.

Australia sits second on the table after playing the first three rounds.

R2: def England 14-11

R3: def by Scotland 8-10