Bush bowlers busy on and off the greens

December 8, 2023 BY

Competitive: Smeaton's Robyn Bradshaw prepares to bowl. Photos: ANTHONY McCABE

RURAL bowling clubs Smeaton and Waubra are looking for the second half of this season to consolidate their position in their respective divisions with an eye on finals.

The Ballarat Highlands Bowls Division double header round played last Saturday and Sunday, and saw mixed results for both clubs.

Smeaton’s Division 2 side had a successful weekend winning their Saturday match at home with all rinks up against Ballarat North and followed up on Sunday away at City Oval with another win.

The victories saw the team move into third position at the expense of Webbcona who lost both their matches and slipped out of the four.

“We are pleased that our club has five of its six teams competing in both weekend and midweek bowls being placed in the four,” said Smeaton president David Toose.

“At present due to the recent weather we have only been able to play the one home game in Division 2 on our grass surface but the grass green looks terrific and with dryer conditions over Christmas our bowlers will be able to play more home games on grass which should advantage us if we can go onto play finals.

“We have organised a Friday twilight Pennant game on Friday 1 February with Clunes which will give our club’s Division 2 team the chance to experience playing under lights.”

Meanwhile Waubra’s Division 2 team played away for both weekend matches.

Hanna Morvell is part of Waubra’s youth brigade and leading the charge for the club’s future success.

They started well, beating Webbcona but on Sunday at Ballarat North green Waubra only managed to get the one rink up, with North’s Glenn Mattei’s foursome having a decisive win to take the game out for the home side.

“Winning the away game at Webbcona on Saturday was a big advantage for the club as every win away from home gives us a chance to move up the ladder from seventh if we can then go onto win our home games in what is a tight competition,” said Waubra’s president Pat Clark.

Hosting City Oval this coming Saturday might see the side move forward but still some way off from Victoria in fourth position who are two wins ahead of their nearest rivals.

“We have a good mix of experienced and young bowlers around the club and with the new synthetic green in its second season the whole greens area looks great, and things are positive around the Club,” said Clark.

Sunday’s Division 6 match played on Waubra’s new green was a tight game played in excellent weather conditions with the green rolling well.

Smeaton went on to take the game out winning by five shots with three rinks up, consolidating the club’s top position on the ladder.

Waubra meanwhile has six wins and retains fourth spot and will go onto play BMS away next Saturday.

Smeaton Division 6 skipper Shane Slater chats with third Bill May about their next move.

With six wins, Waubra will need to remain competitive for the remainder of the season with Clunes, BMS and City Oval just one victory behind and challenging to play finals.

Smeaton’s Division 4 will be travelling to Linton on Saturday and will need to win to ensure they retain the fourth position on the ladder.

It’s a position the team achieved after a good win last Sunday when they hosted Central Wendouree and Ronald Leishman’s rink had a successful day for the side, which currently sees the team in fourth and nine points ahead of Linton.

Smeaton will have their Turkey Triples on Sunday afternoon 17 December followed up the club’s mixed fours tournament on 21 January. Entries are via club tournament director Graeme Perry on 0408 783 466.

Waubra’s Marichu Potter bowed for Peter Goldsmith’s rink.

The Club will also have a barefoot bowls evening on Friday 15 December and welcome all new members into the Club.

Waubra’s open fours tournament will be held at 10am for a 10.30am start on Sunday 11 February with entries being lodged through Bobby Williamson phone 0437 844 422.