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Tracy Ryan defeats Gaut to claim Ladies Merit

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She has won titles too numerous to list, but Tracy Ryan couldn’t contain her joy after becoming the 2019 Shropshire Ladies Merit champion, writes Malcolm Fletcher.

Ryan defeats Gaut to claim Ladies Merit

The pocket rocket from Meole Brace got her hands on the trophy after beating Angela Gaut 21-13 in Sunday’s final at Battlefield.

And minutes later the 53-year-old posted on social media: “OMG! So excited winning the Shropshire Merit today.”

A few drinks in the adjacent Red Lion followed as Ryan, who has a bowls CV that includes British Ladies Merit and doubles successes, and an Isle of Man Festival triumph – reflected on her latest achievement.

County women’s comps secretary Louise Cotton was happy too, saying: “We had fabulous bowling all day on a green in great condition, the scores not reflecting how good the bowling was.

“Unfortunately rain started as the final began, which Tracy adjusted to quickly and bowled good leads throughout to keep the pressure on Ange.

“My congratulations to Tracy, Angela and Helen Clee and Sian Skelton (the losing semi-finalists) who all qualify for the British Ladies Merit finals on July 13.”

Ryan beat Gaut’s sister Clee 21-19 in the semis while the older sibling was ending the hopes of the third Wrockwardine Wood bowler to make the last four, Skelton, 21-18.

A total of 22 entered and the quarter-final scores were: Clee 21 Emma Massey-Jones 17, Ryan 21 Molly Sullivan 8, Gaut 21 Jodie Rutter 14, Skelton 21 Shavorne Osborne 9.

Cotton added; “All girls under-18 wishing to enter the British Ladies Junior Merit need to contact me ASAP as I am trying to arrange a qualifier before the finals that will take place on September 7.”

n North Shropshire will be represented by Donna Bennett (Malpas Sports) and Janet Powell (Wem BC) at the British Ladies Merit finals on July 13 at Windle BC in St Helens after they came through the qualifier at District.

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