Arianne, 14, wins world junior bowling championship
She entered the inaugural World Junior Bowling Championships in France as one of the youngest competitors but Singapore's Arianne Tay proved that age was no obstacle, as she won the girls' singles title on Tuesday night.
The national youth bowler, 14, scored 230 pinfalls in the final for a comfortable win over Finland's 15-year-old Peppi Konsteri, who managed only 190 pinfalls at the Institut du Judo in Paris.
It was Arianne's first major international title after she emerged top in a field of 47 keglers, aged 13 to 18, from 34 teams.
The Methodist Girls' School Secondary 3 student said yesterday: "I was competing with bowlers up to four years older than me, and I was afraid I might not be up to their standard.
"So the fact that I could reach the stepladder really caught me by surprise but also encouraged me to give of my best.
"I just can't believe it. It's my first time winning something major like this. It's the biggest win of my life."
She was the top seed after the qualifying round, totalling 1,407 pinfalls in six games to be the best qualifier. In the semi-finals, she edged past Grace Gella, 18, of the Philippines by 214 to 188 pinfalls.
Arianne, who has been bowling for five years, said: "During the semi-finals and finals, I was very nervous because both my competitors were such great players, but I tried my best to focus on the process.
"The key was to keep myself calm during the process, breathe in and out and make the best shots I could."
National senior assistant coach Alvin Koh was impressed not only with how Arianne handled her nerves despite the intense pressure, but also with her ability to cope with an increased work load.- XENER GILL