Harlow reaches Scottish semis
WORLD No 1 bowler Greg Harlow suffered a narrow defeat in the Semi-final of the Scottish International Open on Friday at the hands of tournament winner Kelvin Kerkow. Harlow, 38, who lives in Soham and is a member of City of Ely Indoor Bowls Club, made a
WORLD No 1 bowler Greg Harlow suffered a narrow defeat in the Semi-final of the Scottish International Open on Friday at the hands of tournament winner Kelvin Kerkow.
Harlow, 38, who lives in Soham and is a member of City of Ely Indoor Bowls Club, made a sensational start to the season when he achieved the historical feat of winning the engage International Open for the third year in a row in Sheffield on November 5.
Harlow carried this form into the early stages of the second World Bowls Tour event of the season at Dewars in Perth, cruising to the semi-final without dropping a set.
He said: "I had a tough draw and I was very happy with the way I played. I beat Les Gillet in the Second Round and he's been a top-class player for a long time, and I then played at my best against (world No 10) Mark Royal in the quarter-final."
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Many expected Harlow to dispatch the Australian Commonwealth gold medallist Kerkow in the semi-final, which was just the second time the pair had faced each other in a singles match.
Harlow triumphed in their last meeting, the First Round of the 1997 World Championships, but knew he would face a tough test.
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He said: "Both of us have improved a great deal since our last match so I think we both knew it would be 50/50."
Kerkow edged the first set 6-4 and squeezed through to the final by the narrowest of margins when a measure gave him the second bowl in the final end (when he was 6-4 down), to tie the set 6-6.
Harlow said: "There was barely more than a paper's width between the two balls and if it had gone my way it would have gone to a tie-break, where anything can happen.
"I thought I played better than Kelvin to be honest, but he played some very good driving shots and it just went his way."
Kerkow then went on to a surprisingly comfortable 11-5, 13-3 win in an all-Australian Final against world No 3 David Gourlay.