Cus­tom badge to cel­e­brate ar­dent player’s 100 years

Isis Town and Country - - Sport - By MATTHEW MCIN­ER­NEY

YOU may see Bill Sch­midt Snr get around in a wheel­chair but the cen­tu­rion proudly stands tall among his bowl­ing peers.

Mr Sch­midt turned 100 at the end of March, and last month Bowls Queens­land hon­oured the proud man with a cus­tom 100-year badge.

Bowls Queens­land of­ten make pre­sen­ta­tions of 70, 80 and 90-year badges when play­ers reach the mile­stones, but it’s not ev­ery day men like Greg Caul­ley have the op­por­tu­nity to present three-fig­ure badges.

Caul­ley, the state devel­op­ment of­fi­cer for the Cen­tral Queens­land re­gion, said it was an hon­our.

“It proves this sport is one of longevity; it’s a sport for life,” Caul­ley said.

Mr Sch­midt bowled for about 60 years, with the last 30 at Uran­gan Bowls Club.

Born in Childers a month be­fore Aus­tralian troops landed at Gal­lipoli, he started bowl­ing at Grey Lynn Bowls Club in New Zealand 60 years ago.

He spent sev­eral decades across the Tas­man, and fought for the New Zealand Reg­i­ment in the Sec­ond World War.

He also met his wife Phyl­lis in NZ, be­fore the cou­ple – and their chil­dren – re­turned to Australia in 1986.

Mr Sch­midt’s son Bill Sch­midt Jnr said his fa­ther joined Uran­gan when he re­turned, and bowled at the Her­vey Bay club un­til he was 95 years old.

He was also made a life mem­ber last year.

“Af­ter 55 years he came back here and joined the club,” Sch­midt said.

“He was still bowl­ing at 95 but it’s a bit hard on the joints now.

“I think it’s fan­tas­tic (to see him hon­oured). He got a 90s badge but they had to get a 100-year badge spe­cially made for him.”

Son Bill Sch­midt Jnr He was still bowl­ing at 95 but it’s a bit hard on the joints now.

Sch­midt said his dad got him into bowls when he was eight, and it was a fam­ily tra­di­tion that had con­tin­ued.

“Two of my sons play and a third is about to start,” Sch­midt said.

“Ash­ley was in the Queens­land un­der-18s, Dy­lan bowled here and Kon­rad is about to start.

“They’re the fourth gen­er­a­tion of bowlers in the fam­ily.

“Me and dad were the first fa­ther-son com­bi­na­tion to win the First Year Cham­pi­onships when we were in New Zealand.”

PHOTO: MATTHEW MCIN­ER­NEY

CON­GRAT­U­LA­TIONS: Bill Sch­midt Snr proudly wears his Bowls Queens­land 100-year badge.

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