ELMWOOD PARK BOWLING CLUB.
Newsletter: January 2018.
What a month, January 2018, has been – probably the best in the club’s history !
Club members must have had very good Yule period because national and centre titles have been rolling in ever since.
Three titles were shared between Gary Lawson, Bev Morel and Sherrie Cottle at the national championships in Dunedin, while Paul McKinnell gained an extremely meritorious third in the men’s pairs with his old Southland mate, Graham Lowe.
Lawson’s hand-picked, power-packed combination of Ali Forsyth, himself, Shannon McIlroy and Justin Goodwin romped home in the men’s fours in expected fashion. He freely admitted at our clubrooms that his toughest struggle of the championships was in the men’s pairs semi against club mate, Paul McKinnell, as the 14 – 11 scoreline would indicate.
As for Bev and Sheree, they kept on astounding the pundits. At 78 years of age, Morel showed her amazing skill and tenacity when the two of them ousted young national reps, Tayla Bruce and Katelyn Inch, 17 – 13, in the quarter final of the womens pairs and with Sheree leading superby they coasted home from there. Bev was quick to praise Sheree’s contribution in winning and, to make the accomplishment even more exciting, this was Sheree’s first national title.
Just a couple of weeks later, the club was to the fore again in the Canterbury Centre finals weekend. After the men’s three fours teams narrowly missed out reaching the inter-club finals by a mere shot in the semis, Mat Bassett confirmed his talent by winning the men’s 8s final in a closely fought game. Likewise Jonathan Flint hung close to his highly rated opponent Kerry Becks through the early and middle stages of the senior men’s final before finishing the last three ends in brilliant fashion to win 21 – 18.
Three club members made singles finals with Sheree Cottle playing Mandy Boyd in the women’s singles, just not being able to complete a trifecta.
All in all, it was a very proud display by the club, which should be celebrated by all members.
There was another notable result in January with club president, Ian Rule teaming with skip, Rodney Greaney to reach to final of the prestigious Burnside Pairs. They showed again that these two can competewith the very best, beating the Australia Commonwealth Games and World champs combination of Aaron Wilson and Brett Wilkie in the lead-up to the final. Unfortunately they were toppled by Burnside’s past national pairs champion, Mike Small and the very promising Richard Hocking in the final but this was a notable performance against some of the finest bowlers in the country.
A very big welcome back on the greens to Steve Ditford who has had to sit out most of this season with a frustrating injury. He stepped back into the three fours team on finals weekend, as if he’d never missed a game, playing some great bowls, as only he can.
And it was noted by his team-mates and onlookers that the game was a lot more exciting and certainly a lot louder with Ditty back in the fold!