World Bowls Challenge: Australia vs. The World
Australia vs. The World.
Bowls’ equivalent to golf’s Ryder Cup is here, with the inaugural World Bowls Challenge set for the covered surfaces of the state-of-the-art Moama Bowling Club (NSW, Australia) from Friday, November 29 to Saturday, November 30.
The BCiB Australian Jackaroos will face perhaps their tough task ever — a composite team made up of 10 of the sport’s pre-eminent players from around the globe when the World Bowls Challenge commences on Friday night.
The Jackaroos, the most prolific nation of the most recent Commonwealth Games and past two World Bowls Championship, are set to be captained by Rebecca Van Asch, who recently notched up her 250th cap for Australia, but will be tested against ten international raiders from six of the strongest bowls nations.
Current Australian-based internationals Ryan Bester (Canada), Jo Edwards (New Zealand), Kelly McKerihen (Canada) and Gary Kelly (Ireland) give the ‘Rest of the World’ team a touch of local flavour, in addition to a litany of world and Commonwealth champions, including Shannon McIlroy (New Zealand), Colleen Piketh (South Africa), English pair Ellen Falkner and Katherine Rednall and Scottish duo Alex Marshall and Darren Burnett.
The host nation will be eager to impress on home-soil, in an effort to provide a fitting finale and send-off for Jackaroos stalwart Karen Murphy, who is calling time on her international career after 22 years of service and more than 660-appearances.
The format will deviate from tradition in utilising sets-play and will begin with Mixed Triples, followed by Men’s Pairs, Women’s Pairs, then Mixed Pairs, and conclude with ten Singles matches (five Men’s and five Women’s singles matches) staged across staggered starts.
Collectively, 22 rubbers will be played across eight sessions, with Bowls Australia (BZ) providing coverage of 15 games via primary and secondary television rinks.
BCiB Australian Jackaroos: Corey Wedlock, Aron Sherriff, Aaron Teys, Aaron Wilson, Barrie Lester, Ellen Ryan, Karen Murphy, Kelsey Cottrell, Natasha Scott, Rebecca Van Asch (c), Coach – Steve Glasson.
Team World: Alex Marshall MBE (c) (Scotland), Darren Burnett (Scotland), Shannon Mcilroy (New Zealand), Ryan Bester (Canada), Gary Kelly (Ireland), Jo Edwards MNZM (New Zealand), Colleen Piketh (South Africa), Kelly McKerihen (Canada), Ellen Falkner (England), Katherine Rednall (England), Coach – Gary Smith.
Live on Fox Sports Australia and Kayo Sports (Australia), Sky Sport NZ (New Zealand) and Bowls Australia’s Facebook page (all other countries). Friday from 5.00pm-10.00pm and Saturday from 12.30pm-5.30pm (AEDT).
World Bowls Challenge
Friday, November 29 – 5.00pm – 10.00pm AEDT
Saturday, November 30 – 12.30pm – 5.30pm AEDT
Moama Bowling Club, VIC, Australia