Bowls tidbits

By Alex Mitchell

The region's best novice bowlers battled it out last weekend for the ultimate beginner's bragging rights.

The Central Goulburn Murray Bowls Region's best players who are not affiliated with any bowling club before May 1 last year squared off at Numurkah Golf Bowls Club in what turned out to be an epic day, with the semi-finals and finals on Sunday.

Tatura's Ash McDonnell did his club proud and took home the men's singles titles with a brilliant display, beating Cobram's Greg Thorne in the final.

The women's final was won by hometown hero Maree Luci of Numurkah Golf, who beat Mooroopna's Sandy Thomas in the decider.

The region's body thanked Numurkah Golf for the brilliant facilities and hospitality.

● Moama Bowling Club played host to a genuine bowls carnival on the weekend with the World Bowls Challenge in town.

Australia took out the inaugural edition of the fiesta-style event, which saw a team of the nation's best bowlers fly the flag against a Rest of the World combine.

Australia's team featured big names including Barrie Lester, Aron Sherriff, Kelsey Cottrell and Karen Murphy, while the leftovers included Alex Marshall (Scotland), Ryan Bester (Canada), Jo Edwards (New Zealand) and Ellen Falkner.

The teams played triples and pairs on Friday night before predominantly playing singles on the Saturday and, while the scores were tied at 32-32 after the matches were complete, Australia got the nod from the judges having won 22.5 sets compared to the Rest of the World's 21.5.

The tournament had come down to the final set, where Murphy flew home to win 6-1 and drive the Aussie crowd crazy.

“It was an outstanding finish. I don’t think we could have dreamed of that ending in the lead-up,” MBC sports venue manager Zane Mikin-Laurie told the Riverine Herald.

“The quality of bowls throughout the competition was excellent. When you have the world's best bowlers in one place, you know there is going to be some excitement.

“The grandstands were full for both days which is a really pleasing aspect for us.

“It certainly showed us the local community is fully supportive of the sport and we’re already looking to host it again in the future, but a few discussions need to be had before that happens.”