Lawn Bowls

Mark this date in your diaries: October 13, 2022, the first time I was selected for the top side at Manning…

Remember it friends, it’s first time I’ve been selected in the top side for any sport since the glory days of Aquinas College Cross Country in 2013…

The only problem for me is that it’s only for a Thursday pennant trial game against Fremantle.

If you’ve cottoned on to the comedy if this scenario, this is another case of a sporting contest between the Eagles and Fremantle, but the difference is not so much that it’s a game of lawn bowls instead of Aussie Rules, but moreso that this is a game the Eagles can actually win.

But yes, I am delighted that I’ve cracked it into Team 1 against the Fremantle Bowling Club at Manning, and as a sign of progress, I would note that just shy of a year ago (October 14), I was playing in my first intraclub game over on the lightless dungeon of B Green with the other great characters of 5th Division, not knowing where I’d end up in life as I sat ranked stone motherless in the pecking order….

I was so unknown they didn’t even know how to spell my surname…

However, as someone once said, THE ONLY WAY IS UP:

For the record, myself, Rick and Grahame won that triples game 19-17, and Rick was so annoyed with Grahame that he claimed he never wanted to play with him again, a threat that lasted about 5 minutes because they played together for all of the past winter.

And now, after thousands of hours of practice over the last 363 days, due to the club being a good 20 players short at this stage of the year (There’s only 2 weeks to go until pennants start), the selectors obviously needed an All-Star lead to fill a hole in Team 1…

Turns out, that All-Star was me.

So assuming nobody comes down with the sickness, it would seem I’m in an immensely experienced team; David Cliff from the Wheatbelt town of Brookton as a skip, and I would note David was a skip for Manning’s Thursday Premier League win last season, the lanky mollydooker Maurice Barnes (You may recall I had a grand day out playing alongside Corrie Barnes a few weeks ago), who seems to produce a tracer bullet when he needs to, and John Andrew, who I had many great games against on Fridays over the winter break, and this’ll be the first time I get to play on the same team as the great ‘JA’.

All told, it should be good fun regardless of what conditions we’re facing, and I would note Manning did play a few trial games against Fremantle this past Saturday, and while Manning’s Saturday Team 1 (Made up of Premier League and 1st Division players) cleaned up down in the Port City, Team 2 (Players from Divisions 1 & 2) took on Freo’s Team 2 at Manning, and the rink of JT, Ron Ker, Boothy and Craig Stevens (Father of a former Adelaide Crow) led the way with a 26-13 victory as Manning won 3 out of the 4 rinks, if anyone was bothering to count the aggregate.

Boothy having to check that we were up a good 3 or 4

Suffice to say there’s still plenty of water to pass under the bridge before Pennants gets underway at the end of October, because with the Eagles still having a good 20 players still out for varying reasons, and Freo having a few players to come back, these teams aren’t anywhere close to settled.

So as for what’s ahead after my top flight appearance on Thursday, Manning has one more Saturday inter-club trial this weekend against Thornlie, and I’ll be back in Team 2 heading out to Thornlie, who paid us a visit last Thursday in the first of the October trial games, which was something of a mismatch in Team 2, where Manning had Thursday Premier League & 1st Division quality players going up against 2nd & 3rd Division players, which ended rather poorly for Thornlie.

I think we’ll learn a fair bit more about where stand bowling on the road, because after recent developments to the club, Thornlie now have some of the fastest synthetic greens in the Perth metro area, which I got to enjoy back in March filling in alongside the Tuesday 4th Division ladies:

Ah, the lord’s carpet.

Categories: Lawn Bowls

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