OXFORDSHIRE’S two pairs suffered late agony in the Women’s National Championships which are being held at Leamington Spa.

Donna Knight and Kathy Hawes as well as Sheila Hessey and Gill Lambourne were both neck-and-neck in their first round matches.

But each couple then lost five shots in a single end during the latter stages to bow out.

Knight and Hawes went down 24-20 to their Yorkshire rivals, with Hessey and Lambourne falling 25-20 to their Kent opponents.

Carole Galletly, Stella Amos and Caroline Campion, from Banbury Central, are still going strong in the Triples and are next in action when they bid for a place in the last 16.

Carol Gaskins and Carole Penson are out of the Over 55 Pairs after an agonising one-shot defeat against Isle of Wight opposition.

Having seen off their opening opponents, from Hertfordshire 18-15, the duo went down 20-19 to exit.

Oxfordshire bowed out of the Amy Rose National Under 31 double rink competition, going down 48-28 to Devon.

Despite being ahead at six ends, the Oxon side fell short.

Penson (Oxford City and County) starts her Over 55 Singles campaign on Saturday when she takes on Nottinghamshire’s Melanie Bowling.

Katie Glenn and Amy Stone (Oxford City and County) will play their Under 25 Pairs match against either a Norfolk or Somerset couple on the same day.

Knight and Caroline Campion begin their Singles campaign on Friday.

l Oxfordshire will face Leicestershire in the Walker Cup semi-finals on Sunday at Leamington Spa.

Sue Mayo, Sue Lacey, Knight, Campion, Galletly, Jeanette Berry, Gail Gilkes and Hawes make up the team, with Angela Ives and Margaret Morris named as reserves.