Home sweet home for Pirate Hewson

by Val Febbo

The Bowls Premier League (BPL) has provided bowlers from around the country with opportunities to mix it with the very best, not just Australians, but the world’s best.

As the community once again comes together for another edition of the fan-favourite tournament, a local hero for the host venue of Club Pine Rivers in Brisbane’s north prepares for his maiden BPL in front of the parochial Pirates fans.

Aaron Hewson took part in BPL12 in Moama for the Brisbane Pirates, teaming up with two-time world champion Jeremy Henry and youngster Kira Bourke as the franchise narrowly missed out on a finals berth.

He will return for BPL13 next week, and to front up before the raucous Pine Rivers crowd is an occasion that he is very much looking forward to.

He expects a few jibes from the grandstands, which he feels could be reciprocation for his own somewhat chirpy nature.

“As you’d expect, I’ll be a bit nervous when we go out there but after that it will be excitement because it’s going to be a big crowd,” Hewson said.

“Not all the crowd will be supportive, there’s going to be a bit of heckling but there’s nothing wrong with that, it’s going to be an exciting week.

“I feel like it will be quite a bit different, I’m never one to shy away from throwing a bit of chat when I’m watching, so it’ll be different being in the middle trying to somewhat ignore what’s being said from the side.”

February’s edition of the event on the Murray gave the 34-year-old some valuable teachings on how to compete against the most notable players in the country.

With the valuable experience under his belt he hopes to continue to make improvements at Club Pine Rivers.

“What you learn real quick is just how much of an intense competition it is,” he said.

“There’s no soft games, it’s condensed over four days and you have to be one hundred and ten percent focussed on every game or you get towelled up pretty quick.”

Hewson will team up with Henry again, while Bourke has been replaced by Commonwealth Games gold medallist and World Champion, and Brisbane Pirates stalwart, Kelsey Cottrell.

A nine-time Club Pine Rivers club champion in all four disciplines, Hewson hopes that he can become the 23rd player to hold the BPL trophy aloft at his home club in front of family and friends.

That main support group was in full swing in Moama, with his family making the 17-hour highway trek from the Queensland capital to the Victorian and New South Wales border.

“I expect the grandstand to be packed with locals, mum and dad are coming down, my partner and my young fella will be there in a little Pirates shirt we organised for him,” Hewson said.

“It should be an excellent week, I can’t wait.

“They drove down from Moama last time, and I don’t think they’ll do that again, having a two-month-old in a car for 17-hours wasn’t fun, but I was lucky I got to fly!”

BPL13 runs from April 20-23, with Rinkside Live live-streaming available on Facebook and broadcast action nightly from 5-10pm AEDT on Fox Sports.