Records tumble as England sets the pace

4th September, Monterry: Records tumbled like confetti off a clear blue sky as England's Fiona Banks, Zara Glover, Jemma Smith, Lisa John and a second '300' from Kirsten Penny took them to the top of the first block Team event at the World Women's Championship.  This short oil pattern was certainly producing high scores as the English enjoyed a huge strikefest in the second game by such a handsome margin with 1261, breaking the old record of 1151 set by Malaysia in 2003.

That standard did not carry through to the third game, though. "Kirsten didn't stop shaking for the first four frames of the last game," Zara Glover joked. "We are not morning people, so we were all half asleep through the games this morning, so maybe we were more relaxed and having looser swings."

Denmark, who were the first to break the record with 1165 in the first game, took the early lead ahead of the Finns by 57 pins. The 1261 by England quickly moved them to the front of the pack with Indonesia putting in their bid to take up second.

Despite a 1074 posted by the English ladies, it was sufficient to top the squad with 3310 followed by Indonesia second on 3252. Finland finished third ahead of the pace-setter, Denmark in fourth.

As the second squad, featuring Trios stars Sweden, United States and Korea took to the lanes, it was interesting to see how the hotshots cope with the target set by England in the morning. It was Korea back in the frame after the first two games of the second squad, '300 girl' Kim Yeau Jin topping the scores with 470 over the first two games.

Excitement for Venezuela as Alicia Marcano shot a 299 in the first game and followed that with 246 for 545 going into the third game. She left the 4-pin on that vital last ball. The USA girls were coasting along in third place on this squad, but as we've seen before, they have a sting in their tail to come screaming back when it was thought they were out of the picture.

But it was the Malaysian girls, gold medalist in the 2003 championship, storming home with a superb 1127 to end the squad at the top on a total of 3218. Korea settled for second with 3161 despite leading the first two games.

With the two squads combined, England remained on top with Indonesia in second and Malaysia making their bid for the first medal in third. Finland and Denmark rounded up the top five whilsts favourites, Korea lavishing down in sixth position.

So far, scores on the long oil have not been so good, so Wednesday afternoon's squad of the cream of the crop will be an interesting three games as the top 24 seeded teams from the first block will all bowl together in squad 2.

Detailed scores: Team of 5 1stBlk | All Events | Photo Album.

Photos courtesy of Keith Hale, Bowlers Journal International.