High praise for club: The greens were packed last week at Cobram Bowling Club, where 120 people from all around Victoria gathered to play for the Cobram men’s triples tournament.
Competition was fierce, but nobody was surprised when the victory went to Australia’s number one ranked bowler Barrie Lester and his teammates Josh Thornton from Shepparton and Troy Mansfield from Echuca.
Cobram Bowling Club board member Andy Reeves said it was one of the most successful tournaments the club had seen in a long time.
‘‘It’s a major event for us, a little club on the Murray. It certainly doesn’t happen every day,’’ Reeves said.
‘‘We have people coming from all over regional Victoria, as well as from the metropolitan areas. We’ve filled all three greens, which is absolutely fabulous.’’
The rain and poor weather cleared up just in time for the tournament, which had ideal sunny conditions for a game of bowls.
‘‘Considering the recent rains, the greenkeeper and volunteers have done a fantastic job,’’ Reeves said.
‘‘The greens are in excellent condition and we’re getting a lot of compliments from the players.’’
Club members were delighted to get a chance to meet international bowler Barrie Lester, who gave tips and advice during a demonstration day on Tuesday.
Lester gave club members tips on their bowling technique, but he said the most important advice he could give was on how to run a good, active club that attracts new members.
‘‘The club members been really receiving, they’ve enjoyed picking up a few tips to help their own game and more importantly to help their club,’’ Lester said.
‘‘I gave a lot of advice on club culture, club behaviours and the characteristics of being a good club both off the green, inside the club and the running of the club as well as a few coaching tips out on the green.’’
Lester said he was impressed by how the tournament was managed.
‘‘It’s an amazing tournament, beautiful greens, just a great group of people.
‘‘There should be more of it, clubs like this running great tournaments.’’
Lester hopes to make it to the Commonwealth Games next year with his bowls partner Josh Thornton, who shares his goal of getting more people into bowling and joining their local bowling clubs.
‘‘Cobram has a great club,’’ Thornton said.
‘‘They’re very progressive in terms of trying to get people playing the sport and they’ve got great facilities.
‘‘If they keep doing what they’re doing, they’ll be going strong for a long time.’’
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