Nationals excitement for QLD U-18s
Top 10 juniors head to WA for Aust Champs Next week the 2013 Australian Under-18 Championships gets underway in Western Australia, with Sorrento Bowling Club the host venue.
Starting September 30 and running until October 3, each state and territory will have their best ten representatives, five boys and five girls, competing in singles, pairs, triples and fours.
This competition has been a grounding for young players, such as Commonwealth Games gold medallists Lynsey Clarke and Mark Casey, as well as current World pairs champion Kelsey Cottrell.
Bill Cornehls, Bowls Queensland’s state coach, believes the tournament can encourage young prospects, “It gives the Juniors chance to develop, it gives them experience. These are the State players of the future and they need to start developing from a young age.”
Queensland singles and pairs star, Braiden Leese, is looking forward to it, “It’s another National tournament and I hope I can go well and win another medal.” Fresh from his Junior Classic silver with Stephen Savage, Braiden’s confidence is high, “We won the State under 18’s earlier this year so our bowls are going well.”
April Wilson from Club Helensvale will also be competing in the singles and pairs, “I’m so excited. The Nationals are always great, it’s such a big tournament.”
The multiple Queensland State Junior title holder is paying little attention to Sorrento’s Top End greens being the nation’s best, “We’ve all got to play on them in the same conditions, so it doesn’t matter where we play.” It’ll only be the second time April has paired with Taleah Putney, ”We had some amazing games last time out, but just losing by one or two. I’m confident we can put on a good performance.”
When asked about the strength of the group April was positive, “We’re a tight group, we’re all good friends which will make our bowls go better.”
Girls triples and fours player, Rikki-Lee Kemp, agrees with April about team unity, “It’s a strength and I believe we can build on that and win some medals.” She is also confident about heading over to WA, “I’m really happy with how my bowls are going. Hopefully I can help the team out and bring something home.”
“This tournament is valuable to young players,” adds Bill, “We didn’t have these events 20 years ago and it can only be good for the young players and the future of bowls in Queensland.”