Two transtasman tests at the Golden Shears have been shared 1-1 each after the shearing team of World champions John Kirkpatrick, Nathan Stratford and Rowland Smith was unable to keep in touch with their Australian visitors on the finewooled merinos that dominated their shearing match.
The test was won comfortably by the Australian team of veteran Shannon Warnest, reigning Australian champion Daniel McIntyre, and seasoned international Jason Wingfield.
It was Australia’s 33rd win in 63 tests since the annual home-and-away transtasman ser ies’ started in 1974, and provided some payback for New Zealand’s win in a woolhandling test the previous night, in the latest battle between the New Zealand World champion pairing of Joel Henare and Maryanne Baty and 2017 World championships combatants Mel Morris and Sophie Huf.
Australia effectively had the shearing test won by the halfway stage, both Wingfield and Warnest being more than two sheep clear of the best of the New Zealanders as the Kiwis changed onto the crossbreds, after a tough battle through six merinos each.
It extended the amazing record of South Australian shearing legend Shannon Warnest who has shorn in 31 of of the tests, the last 29 in a row. He was the best individual in a transtasman shearing test for at least the 15th time.
The woolhandling test was held on Friday night but an announcement of the result was unable to be made because of the collapse of veterans event competitor and former Golden Shears Open woollhandling champion Mi Nooroa on the stage, bringing an early end to the night’s programme.