The New Zealand shearing team in Australia

Kiwi shears win

by Ann van Engelen

New Zealand claimed a two to one triumph in a night of trans-Tasman shearing sports test matches in Australia recently.

The world champion woolhandling and blade shearing teams won their respective matches during the Australian national shearing and woolhandling championships in Dubbo, NSW, but the Kiwis were again shut out in the machine shearing match.

It was Australia’s fifth consecutive win in the annual home-and-away machine shearing matches, including two at New Zealand home-leg, the Golden Shears.

Veteran shearer Tony Dobbs and Allan Oldfield, of Geraldine, who together won a world title in France in July, maintained New Zealand’s unbeaten record in blade shearing tests against Australia by beating Johnathon Dalla and Ken French by a wide margin of almost 43 points.

World champion woolhandlers Sheree Alabaster, and Pagan Karauria, won the woolhandling test by just 2.54 points from Australian world championships team Rachael Hutchison and Mel Morris. It took New Zealand to 33 wins in 43 tests since woolhandling was introduced to the series in 1998.

New Zealand went into the machines test match with one of its better-experienced teams on merino sheep but was still unable to break the Australians’ run, which took the commonwealth to 36 wins from 66 tests since the first formal trans-Tasman shearing test in 1974.

Daniel McIntyre, Jason Wingfield, and Callum O’Brien beat the New Zealand team of Southland shearers Nathan Stratford and Troy Pyper and Paerata Abraham, by a wide margin of more than 27 points.

Dobbs and new world individual champion Oldfield triumphed by finishing first and second in the Dubbo open blade shearing final. Karauria and Alabaster were second and fourth respectively in the Dubbo open woolhandling final won by Hutchison. Pyper was runner-up in the Dubbo open machine shearing final won by McIntyre.