9 Sep 2023

New Zealand women's triples into bowls world champs final

9:22 am on 9 September 2023
Val Smith.

Val Smith. Photo: Photosport

On the back of a record-setting day for their skip, Val Smith, a formidable New Zealand women's triples team will chase gold against hosts Australia at the bowls world championships on the Gold Coast.

Smith celebrated the semifinal victory over Canada on Saturday, which was her 647th performance for New Zealand, which surpassed the previous record of good friend Jo Edwards.

It marked an outstanding day for the triples led by singles world champion Tayla Bruce and the talented Leeane Poulson and skipped by smith, as they edged past Malaysia 14-13 in the morning quarterfinal and dominated Canada 20-9 in the semifinal.

They now take on the might of Australia at Broadbeach on Sunday in front of a partisan crowd.

"The girls worked really hard today upfront because it wasn't easy out there," Smith said.

"The green speed change throughout the day and sped up as the day went on. There were different speeds in different directions as well but the concentration was very good.

"We know it is going to be a tough one because it is Australia on their home track, If we can keep that spirit, confidence, the positive mindset and high work ethic that that is what gets us through."

Smith said her personal record was not something she every considered.

"It's a privilege to have had that many opportunities to play for New Zealand. I didn't set out to go beyond Jo and I am sure Jo did not set out to reach this mark either."

Earlier, the women's pair of Katelyn Inch and Selina Goddard have finished their World Championship campaign with an agonising quarterfinal loss to Scotland.

The New Zealand men's fours team Sheldon Bagrie-Howley, Lance Pascoe, Chris LeLievre, and Tony Grantham, displayed exceptional skill and determination, securing a well-deserved bronze medal in the fiercely contested men's fours event.