Nervous time for Smith in All Nations

The disappointment of just missing out on the chance to defend the World machine shearing title showed just a twinkle as Hawke's Bay gun Rowland Smith started his bid to win the 2017 championships' major support event.

Hawke's Bay shearer Smith, who grew-up in Northland, dominated the New Zealand team selection series last year by winning five of the six events but then missed selection by the narrowest of margins by finishing their in the series final in Christchurch in November.

Today he conceded he was "a bit nervous" as he shore in the first heat of the Southland All Nations Open, which attracted 100 entries, including several of the 59 representing their countries in the World championships heats which started later in the day.

But Smith, winner of 96 finals since first shearing Open-class in late 2006, including the 2014 World final in Ireland and multiple Golden Shears and New Zealand championships opens, said it was the first time he'd felt nervous on the shearing stand in "a couple of years."

It possibly showed, for he qualified just 15th of the 24 making it to the All Nations quarterfinal which will be shorn tomorrow (Friday), a list with a surprise but highly-promising leader in Southland shearer Casey Bailey.

Second-to-top qualifier was Irish shearer Ivan Scott, who holds the two major solo World lambshearing records, the latest a tally of 867 shorn in nine hours in England last July.

Results from the Southland All Nations Open heats (4 sheep each, 24 to quarter-finals): Casey Bailey (Riverton) 4mion 52.152sec, 21.858pts, 1; Ivan Scott (Ireland) 4min 53.827sec, 22.691pts, 2; Nathan Stratford (Invercargill) 4min 55.439sec, 22.772pts, 3; Gavin Mutch (Scotland/Whangamomona) 4min 34.1sec, 23.305pts, 4; Paerata Abraham (Masterton) 4min 45.243sec, 23.262pts, 5; Tony Coster (Rakaia) 4min 58.184sec, 23.409pts, 6; Aaron Haynes (Feilding) 4min 59.058sec, 23.453pts, 7; Ryan Miller (Gore) 5min 9.2sec, 23.46pts, 8; Dion Morrell (Alexandra) 5min 12.615sdec, 23.631pts, 9; Ringakaha Paewai (Gore) 5min 1.935sec, 23.751pts, 10; John Kirkpatrick (Napier) 4min 55.016sec, 23.751pts, 11; Jason Wingfield (Australia) 5min 10.176sec, 23.759pts, 12; James Fagan (Raglan) 5min 8.134sec, 23.907pts, 13; Jordan Boyes (Owaka) 4min 38.44sec, 23.922pts, 14; Rowland Smith (Hastings) 4min 43.55sec, 23.928pts, 15; Gwion Evans (Wales) 4min 48.524sec, 24.175pts, 16; Darin Forde (Lorneville) 5min 12.214sec, 24.611pts, 17; Ian Montgomery (Northern Ireland) 5min 47.783sec, 24.639pts, 18; Ethan Pankhurst (Masterton) 4min 56.332sec, 24.817pts, 19; Alun Lloyd Jones (Wales) 5min 22.029sec, 24.851pts, 20; Jack Fagan (Te Kuiti) 5min 2.602sec, 25.13pts, 21; Brett Roberts (Mataura) 5min 22.705sec, 256.385pts, 22; Hayden Tapp (Taihape) 5min 30.037sec, 25.502pts, 23; Axle Reid (Taihape) 5min 15.145sec, 25.757pts, 24.


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