Jackaroos named for Trans-Tasman on home soil

by admin

The final piece of the Trans-Tasman selection puzzle was put in place today with the national selection panel announcing the open, development and para-sport teams to take on the New Zealand Blackjacks at the upcoming Trans-Tasman contest from March 18-20 at the Traralgon Bowls Club in Victoria’s La Trobe Valley. National Coach Steve Glasson and selectors Kelvin Kerkow, Sam Clough and Dave Stockham today named the 27-member squad to join the Under-18 team announced last week to represent Australia at the prestigious international event. Two-time International Bowler of the Year, Ettalong Memorial’s 28-year-old Aron Sherriff, has been named as the singles representative in the experienced men’s open outfit which also includes Brett Wilkie (39-years-old, Club Helensvale, QLD), Matthew Flapper (35, Ocean Grove BC, Vic), Wayne Ruediger (37, Grange BC, SA) and Nathan Rice (34, Club Helensvale, QLD). The selectors made only one change from the successful men’s team that ventured to Auckland a year ago with Rice replacing world champion, former Australian Open winner and current Club Helensvale team mate Mark Casey. Headlining the women’s team in the singles is 23-year-old St Johns Park Bowls Club star Kelsey Cottrell. Cottrell, a world champion and 2009 Australian Open singles winner, joins Carla Odgers (23, Lalor BC, Vic), Aussie captain Lynsey Clarke (30, Club Helensvale, QLD), world number two Karen Murphy (39, Cabramatta BC, NSW) and the recently married world champion Natasha Scott (nee Van Eldik, 23, Raymond Terrace, NSW). Odgers is the sole new inclusion into the women’s team that defeated New Zealand eleven months ago with Tasmanian Rebecca Van Asch making way. “Carla has deserved her spot in the team based on her outstanding 2013 which included a semi-final appearance at the Australian Open in February and victory in the pairs event at the Hong Kong International,” Glasson said. “As has been the case for some time, selection was challenging given the strength of the women in our squad but we feel we have picked the best line-up to take on New Zealand which includes such elite players as Jo Edwards and Val Smith. “The men’s team will be ably led by Aron in the singles who also had a stellar 2013 while the experience of Brett, Wayne and Nathan will ensure there are some cool heads out there. “Matthew Flapper’s commitment to establishing himself as a top level bowler has been rewarded with another ‘cap’ and he will play a key role in the competition in his home state.” If the strength and ability of the development team is anything to go by, the future of the sport looks extremely bright. Reigning Australian Open champion Aaron Wilson, from Melbourne’s Brighton Bowling Club will lead off in the singles with senior Australian squad members Matthew Baus and Dylan Fisher while 2013 Under 18 Bowler of the Year Sean Ingham and 2013 Super Six singles champion Andrew Howie round out the men’s team. Victorian Samantha Shannahan has been chosen as Wilson’s female counterpart in the development singles leading South Australian pairs combination of Breeanna Dickson and Renee McPharlin into the Trans-Tasman battle. Queensland’s Kristy Thatcher and Victoria’s Chloe Stewart complete the women’s development contingent. “Again, some youth and experience is scattered through the development teams this year which augers well for the sport moving forward and the level of excitement of the players chosen is testimony to what selection for a Trans-Tasman test means to an Australian bowler.” For the first time, a para-sport team will compete for Trans-Tasman glory in preparation for the Commonwealth Games in July. Joy Forster and Tony Scott have won selection in the Vision Impaired Mixed Pairs competition and will be accompanied by their respective Directors, Bruce Jones and Peter Scott. In the Bowlers with a Disability competition, Anthony Bonnell, Tim Slater and James Reynolds have been named to compete in the green and gold of their country …