Otago Daily Times

Ed­wards says time to quit

BOWLS

- Sports · Wellington, New Zealand · Auckland Region · New Zealand · Championship

WELLINGTON: Jo Ed­wards was sit­ting in Auck­land traf­fic last week when she made the biggest de­ci­sion of her 20­year in­ter­na­tional ca­reer.

The New Zealand bowls great was head­ing across town when the penny dropped.

‘‘I was sit­ting at the traf­fic lights and I thought ‘I'm done’. I al­most said it out loud. That was the mo­ment when I knew, yup, it's time,’’ she said.

Ed­wards had been pon­der­ing re­tire­ment for the last six months, ‘‘not that se­ri­ously though’’, but those thoughts be­gan to so­lid­ify ear­lier this month.

‘‘Peo­ple have al­ways told me ‘you know when you know' and that is def­i­nitely true,’’ Ed­wards said.

‘‘It's al­ways go­ing to be hard and there is a def­i­nite sad­ness, but I also feel happy. It's been 23 years — nearly half my life and this is perfect tim­ing.’’

The 50­yearold ad­mits the un­ex­pected Covid­19 chaos, which took her away from the greens for nearly eight months, helped to crys­tallise her think­ing.

‘‘The [2020] World Cham­pi­onships event was al­ways an aim,’’ she said.

‘‘But it didn't go ahead this year and who knows about 2021? But I also wanted to give Bowls New Zealand time to put to­gether new teams and I knew if I wasn't fully com­mit­ted then it wasn't go­ing to work.’’

Ed­wards has won a record 646 caps for the Black Jacks, five World Championsh­ip medals (two gold), three Com­mon­wealth Games triumphs and an un­prece­dented six World Cup sin­gles crowns. — RNZ

 ??  ?? Jo Ed­wards
Jo Ed­wards

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