Many of the most promising young bowlers in NSW and beyond will be at Warilla Bowls club next week for the annual Junior South Pacific Carnival.
The carnival features under 16 and Open (under 18) Singles, plus Pairs and is arguably the most prestigious non-championship event in NSW junior bowls.
The carnival begins with both Singles tournaments next Monday, with a host of Illawarra bowlers nominated.
The U16s draw features 11 sections and 13 Zone 16 bowlers including Daniel Harford (Dapto Citizens), Charlie Jeffers (Gerringong), Daniel Davies (Windang), Jacob Aitken (Kiama) and Warilla’s Daniel Hunter.
Seven sections of boys and girls have nominated for the Open Singles, including defending Singles and Pairs champion Connor Freeman (Raymond Terrace) and top Warilla duo Toby Peters and Justin Rumble.
The other Illawarra entrants include Tyson Arneman (Dapto Citizens) and Nathan Sopher (Warilla) who are drawn with Freeman in Section 2; while Ryan Nabbe (Warilla) will take on the talented Rebekah Lord (St Johns Park) in another section.
The Pairs will start next Tuesday (JAN 15) and feature 28 teams in seven sections with Freeman and Peters to play together in Section 7.
The Junior South Pacific has a long history as being a springboard for some of Australia’s greatest bowls talent.
Toby Peters was Illawarra’s most recent winner, taking out the U16s Singles as a 13-year-old in 2017, while he has also won the Pairs in 2016 and 2017.
World champion and former World No.1 Leif Selby won the second Junior South Pacific Singles in 1988 and helped run the event for more than a decade before recently moving to New Zealand.
Among the other top bowlers to win the Open Singles are Brett Duprez (1991), Scott Bateup (1998), plus Australia’s current top bowler Aron Sherriff in 2001 and 2002, and Aaron Teys in 2011 and Ben Glasson in 2012.
Entry to Warilla Bowls is free and everyone is encouraged to support the next generation of bowls stars.