So close...

ELLEN Falkner narrowly missed out on an historic third successive world bowls title. Top seed Falkner, a 27-year-old City of Ely bowler, was the clear favourite to become the first player to win the Ladies World Matchplay title for a third time against Mo

ELLEN Falkner narrowly missed out on an historic third successive world bowls title.

Top seed Falkner, a 27-year-old City of Ely bowler, was the clear favourite to become the first player to win the Ladies World Matchplay title for a third time against Motherwell's Caroline Brown

Falkner was playing in her fourth final in five years before a nationwide audience, watching the action live on the BBC's last ever edition of Grandstand, as well as a packed crowd at Potters Leisure Resort, Hopton-on-Sea, Norfolk.

Falkner, from Littleport, went into the match on the back of an incredible comeback in which she overcame deficits of 1-9 in the first set and 4-8 in the second to beat her unseeded semi-final opponent Debbie Stavrou.


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The Commonwealth gold medallist was required to repeat her comeback heroics in the final, last Wednesday, but found her opponent Brown to be on fire in a repeat of the 2005 final.

After winning the first set by a five-shot margin and quickly establishing a 9-0 lead in the second, Brown eventually recorded a 9-4, 10-5 victory to become the first Scot to win the engage title.

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It was a day for shocks in the world of bowls, with Falkner's City of Ely club-mate Greg Harlow suffering a third-round defeat in the World Indoor Singles Championship.

The world No 1, who finished runner-up last year, was denied a place in the last eight by Billy Jackson, the 15th seed from Lincoln. The title was eventually won by Scotland's Andy Marshall, who beat Norfolk's Mervyn King 5-7, 13-4, 2-0 in the final.

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