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Bowls In Focus : Bowls In Focus May 2010
10 Bowls In Focus Last year’s decision by the RVBA Match Committee to pilot a ‘Champion’s Week’ concept, whereby the five major state titles are presented at the one venue over a six-day span, was widely harangued by most quarters of the fraternity when first announced, but the finished product has been an unmitigated success. True, there are aspects of the format that can be fine-tuned, the sport’s hierarchy accept that - it’s primarily scheduling - but with so many participants winning their way into more than one championship field the planning will always be under duress to arrive at a perfect formula. However, there were many more features than negatives to come out of this memorable affair. The hosting Darebin City Bowls Club was exceptional, while the much-maligned greens at the for mer Commonwealth Games venue were very good indeed. Some say they were excellent considering the ground staff had to contend with all of Melbour ne’s seasons in the space of a week. Whether it goes ahead again next year is a decision to be made, and should it be rotated to the regional centres is another. The overwhelming consensus of the officials, competitors and spectators who participated is that it should become the norm, while opinion on a rotation is divided. From go to whoa ‘Champion’s Week’ provided wonderful memories of exquisite skills, outstanding personalities and great action. An Affair to Dodd Draws First Blood Werribee RSL star Brett Dodd clinched the first title of Bowls Victoria’s inaugural ‘Champions Week’ last month when he was crowned state singles champion at Darebin City Bowls Club. Dodd claimed the title by scoring an emphatic 25- 13 victory over Sebastopol’s Ian War ner. The much anticipated matching of Warner, the consummate draw bowler, versus Dodd, the renowned hard charger, became a contradiction in ter ms when Dodd’s mastery of the draw in the conditions became the deciding factor. Warner held sway after six tight ends claiming four singles to two, however, as the wind sprung up, so did Dodd’s intensity. Over the next seven ends Dodd collected 16 unanswered shots to leave the Sebastopol veteran floundering in his wake. But a full house of four to War ner on the 14th end followed by successive doubles at the 16th and 17th, saw the scoreboard at 19-12 in Dodd’s favour, with the potential of a big finish looming. However, a pair of Dodd three’s interspersed by a single to Warner over the ensuing three ends saw the championship final decided. “ I was really happy with the way my Henselite ABT-evo’s wor ked in the wind,” Dodd said after the presentations. “ Ian was really str uggling to get his bowls to turn into the breeze on one side of the rink which gave me a definite advantage. “ You can’t imagine how thrilled I am to have won this state title. I share it with a lot of people who have helped me over the years at both Altona and Werribee RSL. “I saw a bit of Ian’s play in the semi final and he was brilliant. To win this championship against an opponent of his ability, and knowing his great record at Burwood over so many years makes it even more special.” Warner, whose name has been synonymous with success at the Burwood club for the best part of 30 years, retired to the Ballarat region a year or so ago and has gone through a bowls renaissance since making the ‘tree change’. In the first round he claimed a strong win over Hampton’s Luke Gattuso, then in a clash of the old stagers he managed to hold off a fast finishing Noel Waite from • Below: New state singles champion Brett Dodd is congratulated by RVBA Hall of Fame member Bob Middleton. • Right: Dodd on route to victory at Darebin City. • Far Right: Sebastopol’s Ian Warner during the state final. Remember
March April 2010
June July 2010