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Favourites lead the way to machines semi-finals

The World Championships machine shearing favourites have lived up to predictions by filling the first three places among the top 12 bfor the semi-finals to be shorn this afternoon in ILT Stadium Southland, Invercargill.

The 2012 champion, Gavin Mutch, of Scotland, led the qualifiers, followed by New Zealand hopes John Kirkpatrick and Nathan Stratford, while two-times champion Shannon Warnest (pictured), of Australia was also in the top 12.

The 12 qualifiers in order are (aggregated points after three rounds of heats): Gavin Mutch (Scotland) 71.647pts, 1; John Kirkpatrick (Napier) 74.462pts, 2; Nathan Stratford (Invercargill) 76.513pts, 3; Ivan Scott (Ireland) 81.376pts, 4; Gwion Evans (Wales) 81.714pts, 5; Shannon Warnest (Australia) 84.026pts, 6; Jack Robinson (Northern Ireland) 84.131pts, 7; Dean Nelme (England) 84.215pts, 8; Ian Jones (Wales) 87.126pts, 9; Lee Molkenbuhr (Falkland Islands) 89.925pts, 10; Hamish Mitchell (Scotland) 91.671pts, 11; Ian Montgomery (Northern Ireland) 91.836pts, 12.

Next man in and unlucky to miss out was Aaron Bell (Cook Islands).