A game for all, says champ
Indoor bowls is much like chess, the new national singles champ says.
Wayne Baker, an arborist from Hamilton, won in the open singles category at the 2017 New Zealand Indoors Bowls Championships at the Taupo Events Centre on Sunday.
The national championship – which ran from Sunday to Friday – saw 1165 players from across the country compete in singles, pairs, triples and fours matches.
The aim of bowls is to roll four balls down a mat towards the kitty [white ball], and to have one of your balls closer to the kitty than your opponent’s ball.
‘‘It can be a strategic chess game – trying to outplay or outwit your opponent,’’ Baker said.
‘‘The key to playing well is consistency and being able to judge the right weight and angles.’’
Baker started playing when he was young.
‘‘Mum and dad took us down to the local club when I was 12 years old,’’ he said.
‘‘Then I started playing at tournaments across the country, in Napier, New Plymouth and Christchurch.
‘‘When I was 23 years old, I won the national pairs competition with my brother,’’ he said.
Indoor bowls was often thought of as a sport for the older generations, Baker said. ‘‘But it is a sport for all ages. ‘‘It’s a sport where you can play against your parents or even your grandparents.
‘‘Anyone can play and anyone can win on the day,’’ he said.
Baker said unlike other sports, all the equipment is provided. ‘‘It’s an easy sport to get into.’’ * Lake Taupo Indoor Bowls plays on Tuesdays at Rotary House from 7pm.
The Devil joined two girls dressed as angels for the triples round.