AWESOME FOURSOME: The Ocean Shores mixed fours winners were Brian Howell, Lee Roberts, Janine Howell and Judy Williams.
AWESOME FOURSOME: The Ocean Shores mixed fours winners were Brian Howell, Lee Roberts, Janine Howell and Judy Williams.

Women set to challenge the men

SIX hundred women have so far registered with Bowls NSW in the state body’s departure from its traditional men-only status.

The major change to the state regulations was made to allow more opportunities for women to participate in bowls, particularly at weekends.

The clubs have been notified that any female who registers with Bowls NSW is entitled to play in regular social or gala events that are conducted by the club and are to be given the same privileges as any other registered member of the club.

“Bowls NSW expects all clubs to be aware of and comply with their legal obligation under relevant anti-discrimination legislation,” the state body says. “Bowls NSW recommends that any club intending to hold gender-specific tournaments that are open to members from outside the club, seek their own advice as to compatibility with applicable compliance requirements.”

A reminder is given to clubs that all registered bowling members are eligible to compete in Bowls NSW events.

Unifying process

AFTER what Women’s Bowls NSW says was ‘much discussion, debate and consideration’ its board of directors has unanimously agreed to invite Bowls NSW to ‘explore the possibility of the two associations unifying’.

The move was passed unanimously and a subcommittee was formed to explore how to achieve the unification. Bowls NSW has been invited to do the same.

“Our board looks forward to working with the board of Bowls NSW to achieve an outcome which will be beneficial to both memberships,” a Women’s Bowls NSW source said.

MY VIEW … on gender amalgamation

THAT old bugbear has surfaced again – attempts are being made to unify men’s and women’s bowls. The proposal was raised years ago, and while it has worked satisfactorily in other states the move here faded after much talk.

Bowls NSW’s recent decision to allow women into its men-only stronghold makes it obvious that this time there is a better chance on an agreement being reached. Women already are allowed into most men’s tournament and the fact that in quick time 600 women have registered with Bowls NSW indicates they are anxious for mixed-gender play to arrive.

Amalgamation makes sense. It would save plenty in administration and other expenditure.

But male bowlers often raise objections to playing against women. Only because they don’t like to be beaten by them.

Golden finish

THE two Australian teams in the just-finished Multi Nations event on the Gold Coast took six gold medals from a possible eight, four silver and four bronze.

A couple of retiring greats, Nathan Rice and Karen Murphy, made sure they left a big impression. Rice picked up gold in the fours in his last international match (the two Australian teams played each other in the final). Murphy took gold in the pairs with a memorable last bowl.

Teys success

THE recent Bowls Premier League success confirmed Ballina product Aaron Teys as one of the world’s top bowlers when he was awarded the series’ Most Valuable Performer medal in a comp that included the best-ever, Alex Marshall of Scotland, and a host of other household names.

Teys’ team, the Tweed Heads Ospreys, was in the competition for the first time and he had with him two debutants, Chloe Stewart and Kurt Brown. Teys, however, was no stranger to the winner’s circle, he won last year’s Premier League with the Illawarra Gorillas. He is the only player apart from the brilliant Aron Sherriff, whom he beat in this year’s grand final, to have won back-to-back League titles with different teams.

The Ospreys became the first team in the event’s 10-year history to recover from sitting last after losing the first two of the 14 rounds and going on to win championship. The two-round loss at the opening of the tournament meant that Teys hadn’t scored a point in the Most Valuable table. But from then on he played sensationally to win the next 12 rounds, top the win tally and set a record with his team going through the whole event without losing a tie-break.

Award winners

THE WOMEN’S Bowler of the Year, announced at the Night of Champions at Bankstown, is Geneveive Delves, of Raymond Terrace. It was a night of triumph for the Newcastle club. Apart from Delves’ award, Raymond Terrace took out the Best Performing County Club and Young Bowler of the Year, Kate Matthews.

Chalk markers

THE humble stick of chalk, more associated with schoolroom blackboards, has such an important role in bowls that rules are made about it. Laws of the game say touchers must be marked with chalk. Chalk in a spray or chalk-based marker pens is OK but non chalk-based marker pens that are becoming more common on the green are a no-no.

World Bowls and Bowls Australia don’t give a choice. In their Conditions of Play they insist on the use of only spray chalk.

Add just another cost to the growing cost of playing our game.

Perth glory

ALMOST lost in the hurly-burly of the Bowls Premier League was the Bowls Premier League Cup, run in conjunction with the big-time television event. In an unusual grand final between two South Perth clubs, South Perth (skip Glenn Pauling) defeated South Perth (skip David Mortley) 9-3, 11-11. The two West Aussie teams made the grand final after graduating though regional, state and national qualifiers.