High stakes in Illawarra and South Coast representative showdown

Silver success: The Woonona Mixed Gold team finished runners-up in the Bowls NSW Club Challenge. Picture: Bowls NSW
Silver success: The Woonona Mixed Gold team finished runners-up in the Bowls NSW Club Challenge. Picture: Bowls NSW

Top Illawarra bowlers pressing for spots in the Open and Senior representative teams can push their case in Sunday’s development clash against South Coast at Warilla Bowling Club.

Zone 16 will play two games against South Coast (Zone 7) following which the Illawarra Development squad for 2018 will be named, plus an under 25 team to take on Taren Point in late January.

It is the first time Illawarra and South Coast have met at Development level with South Coast to send seven teams to Warilla BC.

Four rinks take on Zone 16 and the remaining three teams to play a trial against Warilla lower graders in valuable practice ahead of selection for pennant teams in 2018.

Illawarra chairman of selectors Terry Seton said Sunday’s clash gives his players an opportunity to show what they can do at rep level.

‘’We look at the Development squad as being a step towards the next level of rep – be it Opens or Seniors (over 60s),’’ Seton said.

‘’There’s plenty on the line against South Coast and those who play well can book a spot in the (Development) squad for 2018 plus the under 25s rep game in January.’’

The Zone 16 squad features players from nine clubs with Towradgi having four representatives, plus three each from Corrimal and Wiseman Park.

Kiama’s Steve Wills, Ben Ford (Wiseman Park), Trevor Suckley (Dapto Citizens) and Towradgi’s Guy Vozza will skip the Illawarra rinks.

Fairy Meadow’s Danyon Christie, Wiseman Park’s Tom Hull, Towradgi’s James Jones and Corrimal’s Jarrod Beckford are among the young talent to take on South Coast, while Jordan Taylor, Troy Ford and Jayden Christie are unavailable for Zone 16. Long-time Albion Park BC and Zone 16 official Mick Duprez is now on the match committee at South Coast District and expects his team to do well.

‘’We’re keen to knock them off,’’ Duprez said.

‘’I reckon it’ll be very competitive and not much in it either way. South Coast are excited about the match and we look forward to it being an annual fixture between the two associations.’’

Nick King, Peter Delamont, Jamie Thelander and Dave Caldwell are the four skips for South Coast.

Finally, congratulations to the Woonona Mixed Gold team who were runners-up to The Hills at the Bowls NSW Club Challenge Finals at Warilla BC.

Woonona were Zone 16’s best-performing team in an annual event which featured clubs from across NSW competing in Singles, Pairs and Triples in men’s, women’s and mixed team competitions. Last Saturday’s heavy thunderstorm caused havoc and left some third-round matches to be shortened.

In the other Club Challenge finals, Nelson Bay beat Wallacia to claim the Men’s Gold title, while Cabramatta beat Charlestown to win Women’s Gold.

Cabramatta also won the Women’s Pink Division, while Lorn Park took out Mixed Bronze.

Woolgoolga are champions in Men’s Silver, with RSL Sussex Inlet the winners of the Men’s Blue Division. The tournament will return in 2018.

Illawarra Development Squad: Tom Cavanough (Corrimal), Brian Suckley (Wiseman Park), Brad Whitford (Dapto), Steve Wills (skip, Kiama). Tom Hull (Wiseman Pk), Dave Roberts (Towradgi), Danyon Christie (Fairy Meadow), Ben Ford (Wiseman Pk, skip). Rod Busst (Towradgi), Roger Duggan (Warilla), Corey Thompson (Albion Park), Trevor Suckley (Dapto Citizens, skip). Trent McMillan (Corrimal), James Jones (Towradgi), Jarrod Beckford (Corrimal), Guy Vozza (Towradgi, skip).