Trio prove bowls is not just for oldies
Three young lawn bowlers are the latest off the Porirua production line in the sport, and they are looking forward to representing their region in Auckland later this month.
Seamus Curtin, 12, from Plimmerton School and Brady Amer, 13, and Bradley Down, 14, (both from Aotea College) took part in the recent Kittyhawk tournament in Palmerston North.
The event is for bowlers under 19 and is part of a pathway established to identify future national players.
The three are part of a strong bowls culture being developed at Aotea College, in partnership with Plimmerton Bowling Club.
Each played three games in Palmerston North, often pitted against bowlers much older than themselves.
Amer finished sixth, Down eighth and Curtin ninth.
‘‘It was really good to see how we competed against players much older than yourself, it was a good experience,’’ Amer says.
They all qualified for the Kittyhawk nationals Pakuranga over Easter.
‘‘We’ve all got a few years left yet, playing at this [ Kittyhawk] level, so we know we’re going to improve,’’ Down says.
Coach Rachel Wybourne Curtin says the three will prove to be good role models for other young players.
Her Aotea College bowls programme has 19 registered players.
It is a sport that continues to grow in popularity, Down says.
‘‘People need to just get it out of their heads it’s an old person’s sport.
‘‘It’s really social and you’re making friends for life.’’
He and his fellow bowlers put in up to five hours of practice on the greens each week, as well as playing both days of the weekend throughout summer.
Aiming high: Seamus Curtin, Bradley Down and Brady Amer are excited about playing the Kittyhawk nationals in Auckland, ‘‘representing central [region] and ourselves’’, Down says.