MATT LE BER, who started the day with only one loss to his name, suffered defeats at the hands of England's Tom Bishop and Spain's Russell Marks today, but is still in with a good chance of qualifying for Saturday's knockout stage in the World Bowls Champion of Champions in Christchurch.
Bishop, who is only 22, was always going to be a tough opponent and that game proved to be a gritty encounter, full of interest, with the England champion edging home in straight sets, 9-5, 6-5.
'I felt I played well in that game and it was a good contest,' said Le Ber. 'But for some reason I can't explain, I lost my form in my second game against Russell, who played really well – so I can have no complaints about being beaten, 6-5, 13-4.'
With only one win to her credit in the women's championship this week, Lucy Beere, who was scheduled to play three rounds today, made a good start, beating Elisa Cheung, from Hong Kong, 9-4, in the first set, but lost the second, 5-8, before Cheung won the tiebreak, 5-0.
A tight match with Mata Vaile from the Cook Islands saw Beere lose the first set by one shot, 4-5, nine singles being recorded in that set, but she hit back to win the second, 8-7, and this time triumphed in the tiebreak, 6-0.
It really was a day of tiebreaks for Beere, who looked comfortable against Spain's June Jones, winning the first set, 9-6, but a 4-12 reverse in the second set led to a tiebreak, which Jones, wife of former Middlesex cricketer Keith Jones, won at a canter, 6-0.