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Smith hammers home Kiwi test win in Wales

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Hawke’s Bay shearer Rowland Smith has bounced back from the disappointment of missing a World title by just 0.15pts by leading New Zealand to a crushing victory in the first of four tests on the CP Wool Shearing Sports New Zealand team tour in Wales.

Shearing on Friday at the Cothi Shears on a Llanwrda farm in Carmarthenshire, Southwest Wales, Smith and new teammate and Pongaroa farmer David Buick beat the 2019 Welsh New Zealand tour team of Lloyd Rees and Aled Jones by 3.55pts.

Despite the absence of new World champion Richard Jones and World championships teammate Alun Lloyd Jones it was a good start to New Zealand’s bid for a first annual series win in Wales since 2011.

Smith did have the satisfaction of beating Richard Jones in finishing runner-up in the Cothi Shears Open final, won by Alun Lloyd Jones.

It was the 6th New Zealand test match win over Wales in a row, dating back to a victory by Buick and Southland shearer Nathan Stratford over Richard and Alun Lloyd Jones at Corwen, Denbighshire at the end of last July.

Stratford and Buick later scored a 4-0 series win over Lloyd Rees and eventual 2019 World champion woolhandler Aled Jones in the New Zealand summer.

Smith was in total control in the test, finishing 1min 25 seconds before next-man-finished Lloyd, with an eventual 8.5pts margin between the two.

The win could have been even bigger, but for a maximum 5pts penalty against Buick in an otherwise good performance after a rushed trip from New Zealand during the week following the sudden withdrawal and return home of second World championships team member Cam Ferguson.

The second CP Wool tour test is being shorn on Sunday morning at the Lampeter Shears, near Ceredigion, also in Southwest Wales. A new Welsh team will be decided at the Royal Welsh Show ahead of the the last two tests, at the show and at Corwen next Saturday.

Results from the Cothi Shears in Wales on Friday, July 19, 2019:

CP Wool Test match (20 sheep): New Zealand 117pts (Rowland Smith 14min, 51.1pts; David Buick 15min 38sec, 65.9pts,) beat Wales 120.55pts (Lloyd Rees 15min 25sec, 59.6pts; Aled Jones 16min 27sec, 60.95pts) by 3.55pts.

Cothi Shears Open final (20 sheep): Alun Lloyd Jones (Wales) 13min 45sec, 52.6pts, 1; Rowland Smith (New Zealand) 14min 3sec, 53.75pts, 2; Gwion Lloyd Evans (Wales) 13min 30sec, 54.35pts, 3; Richard Jones (Wales) 14min 28sec, 59.55pts, 4; Gareth Daniel (Wales) 14min 31sec, 59.95pts, 5.

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