Freakish storm failed to deter Baldwin


In 1987, a mid-match hailstorm and gusting winds failed to short-circuit Warilla legend Terry Baldwin making it back-to-back singles titles in the South Pacific carnival.

Baldwin died last October; as Warilla Bowling Club celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, Baldwin will be remembered as one of their greatest players.

On January 4 1987, in the South Pacific singles final against Woonona's Eddie Hall, Baldwin trailed 12-8 when a storm quickly flooded the green at Wollongong RSL.

The final was halted for an hour but upon resumption Baldwin showed his class on a drenched green, winning 31-24, after the match was tied at 20-20.

Before the storm hit, officials estimated the green was running at around 13.6 seconds but the rain turned the final virtually into a game of skittles, with a swirling, strong breeze making it even tougher.

Just weeks after his 1987 South Pacific victory Baldwin became the first Illawarra bowler to win the national singles title, beating Commonwealth Games silver medallist Ian Schuback in the final.

Baldwin told the Illawarra Mercury after his triumph that receiving a good luck telegram from his daughter Melinda and son Terry jnr during the final provided added inspiration.

In 1986 Baldwin had claimed the grand slam of Warilla club championships - singles, pairs, triples and fours.

In addition to a highly distinguished bowls career, Baldwin served as a Warilla club director for more than a decade.

In 2000 he was awarded the Australian Sports Medal by Prime Minister John Howard.

Meanwhile, at the 1987 South Pacific carnival, a team of West Wyalong businessmen beat a Warilla team skippered by Russell Jack in the fours decider.

Towradgi Park's Reg Bradley and Quirindi's Kevin Press combined to beat Mick Lee (Dapto) and Frank Dorans (Kiama) in the pairs final.

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