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Bowls In Focus : January 2011
Bowls In Focus 27 The look on Brenda’s face was clearly one of suspicion, with half a dozen blokes gathered together in her living room as she studied each of us twitching in fear. But apar t from female intuition there was no hard evidence to prove us wrong, just a broken lounge room window. Milligan explained again how it was Wal’s fault and that the game of backyard cricket we were enjoying ended when Wal hooked the ball straight through the pane of glass. Wal’s protest of innocence halted abruptly when Todd’s elbow collided sharply with his ribs. Collectively we assured Brenda that this was what really happened and that a glazier had been called and would turn up the next day. Brenda had not long returned from taking a break away from home and family by participating in ‘The Great Victorian Bike Ride’ and was looking forward to a long relaxing bath before collecting Shaun from his grandmother. It began on Thursday night with the club’s ‘Turkey Triples’ tournament. Milligan had organised the event and was intent on winning himself a ‘gobbler’ for Christmas lunch. The tournament invitations he sent out called it a Turkey hunt, and he began proceedings with a blast from his ageing shotgun and yelling ‘let the hunt begin’. And if anybody looked like beating him he would stand the old ‘410’ in the ditch, just to remind them of their folly. Typically the big boofhead won the tournament and celebrated afterwards. Milligan, who lives nearby, waddled off into the night, frozen turkey in one arm, bowls bag and shotgun in the other. A further shotgun blast followed by ‘I got me a gobbler, yee haa’ startled us all. Unseasonable rain had been threatening most of the week and chose the Saturday morning to begin falling. It was annoying as we needed a win, having dropped a couple of games since our big build-up for the Central showdown. Jack and the other farmers in the district were just as frustrated because rain was beginning to dampen their hopes for a good harvest. We gathered at the clubhouse in the vain hope of getting a game star ted but steady rain thwarted us. After the opposition had gone Milligan invited us all around to his place for beers and a barbecue, ‘seein’ as the missus is away’. Changed out of bowls clothes and armed with full Eskies, we gathered under the covered outdoor entertaining area. The barbecue was warming up and Milligan, who had taken the opportunity of Brenda’s absence to give his ferrets a good workout, was busily preparing his catch. A break in the rain and a few beers for bravado prompted a game of cricket. Todd opened the bowling and the combination of damp pitch, rubber ball and hopeless batsmen provided a lot of entertainment, as long as you weren’t the one getting hit by Todd’s quick, lifting deliveries. The big bloke installed himself as umpire, because it required the least activity and gave him the opportunity to give batsmen out for no good reason. Except when it was Wal’s turn to bat. Wal lacked batting technique and was being simply pummelled by the bowling, while every time the ball hit the stumps, the boofhead in white called ‘no ball’, so that the torment could continue. Wal was covered in welts and when Minty finally held a catch at short leg, Milligan called for drinks and we all retired to the ‘pavilion’. Eskies were drained, rabbits were sizzled and the shenanigans rolled on. Todd phoned the local publican for more supplies. But seeing as most of his patrons were gathered at Milligan’s, Rod shut the pub and set up a bar in the carport. Talk of Milligan’s shotgun antics encouraged him to get out his air rifle. He explained how he used it to ‘keep the flaming crows away from the ferret cage’. Wiser people would have simply locked it up. A staggering line of the foolhardy, wearing garden pots on their heads as a concession to occupational health and safety standards, paraded like ducks at a sideshow shooting gallery as Milligan took pot shots at them. Pandemonium broke out when the big bloke deliberately aimed at Wal’s backside and the agonised scream coincided with his hasty removal of terracotta headwear, which went through the lounge room window. The night wore on and Wal exacted revenge by releasing Milligan’s ferrets inside the house. Six of us somehow managed to get the place reasonably tidy, but Brenda’s suspicions grew as the collective hangover contradicted our story. Confirmation came when a fractious ferret stuck its head out from under a lounge chair and bit her ankle. Consequently we were all in the doghouse and Brenda vowed never to leave Milligan home alone again. The recent flooding rains have caused havoc in more ways than one for Milligan and his motley mates in this latest yarn from ‘bush bowling bard’ Doug Maconachie... “The downfall of a Sportsperson is a lazy mind” Henselite, Almark, Taylor, Drakes Pride, Greenmaster, Taylor, Greenz, Hunter, Comfortpro, Greenmaster, Aledge, Holland Park, Cathead, Toressi, Domino, Fletcher Jones, City Clubs, Goodrich IllustrationbyRodMarget Cripes, when the cat’s away things go astray!