Regional Pennant Play-Off

7 May 2019
It was a magnificent day at St Ives today for the Region 15 Pennant Play-Off. With a huge spectator contingent supporting the players, the games between the North Shore District and Manly-Warringah District champions were played in blazing sunshine and the merest puff of breeze.
In Grades 2 and 3, the Manly-Warringah sides made strong starts and never looked under threat, with Newport Beach defeating Asquith in Grade 2, and Harbord defeating Killara in Grade 3. The Grade 4 contest between Belrose and Manly also looked to be going Manly’s way, but with so many of their supporters (plus the club mascot) on the sidelines, the Belrose girls rallied and staged a steady comeback. However, just when it looked as though the home side might still be in with a chance, a couple of lovely conversions from the Manly ladies sealed their fate.
The Grade 1 match saw this year’s rendition of the annual arm-wrestle between Harbord and Neutral Bay. Harbord was in front until the 17th end, when Neutral Bay finally took a one-shot lead. With no more than 2 shots separating them over the next few ends and the advantage fluctuating, it was a cliff-hanger … then on the 21st end, the Neutral Bay team skipped by Midori Matsuoka — trailing by 5 on their rink at the time — made one last push towards the finish line, scoring a four and sealing their side’s victory by 4 shots overall. It was the only victory for the home sides from North Shore District in this year’s play-off.  The Regional Winners now proceed to the State Play-Offs in mid-August in the far north of NSW.