English bowlers 'rain' supreme in final
30 July 2002
The England women’s fours team beat Canada 17-6 in the final despite wet conditions.
Heaton Park's luscious bowling greens were wet today
The foursome of Ellen Alexander, Shirley Page, Gill Mitchell and Carol Duckworth took England’s first ever medal in the category.
Alexander, said of the team performance: “That game proved to us what strength we have as individuals and as a unit.”
“It has been really tough, playing ten matches in four days. The results are a testament to the funding we have received and just shows what can be done.
“We have trained really hard, had good people behind us, and gone for it.
“The venue and the crowd have been fantastic. Every game we have had great support behind us. We wanted to do it for them.”
Alexander wanted to show her gratitude to Sport England who helped with team funding: “We would really like to thank lottery funding. It has changed everything for us in England and given us the chance to achieve this victory.”
Team skip Carol Duckworth spoke of the weather conditions: “The rain delay didn’t affect us. We are used to playing in the rain and have had to come off before. It didn’t worry us at all. It didn’t affect the greens that much. The greens played amazing, even truer after the rain. It probably helped us."
Canadian, Melissa Ranger was delighted with her silver medal: “I’m lost for words. It’s a big honour. We were aiming for a medal based on our past results, but we were never favourites for a medal.
“It was the biggest crowd I have played in front of, and it was very exciting. The TV cameras didn’t intrude at all”. She said.
And teammate Shirley Fitzpatrick-Wong was also pleased with silver. She said: “It means the culmination of a lot of hard work and sacrifice - not just for me but for my family. I have a fourteen-year-old son at home, and he and the rest of my family have been a great support."
“We are very proud to have done this for Canada, especially the bowling community. I guess I’ll be sharing it a little."
“There was a big shot in the ninth end which I think was a turning point. They moved the jack and were able to grab a three.”