Flapper bowled over by selection
Matthew Flapper’s Commonwealth Games dream was realised yesterday when he was named in the Australian bowls team to travel to Glasgow in July, as Meagan Rooth reports for the Geelong Advertiser. The Ocean Grove man is one of seven Games debutants in the 17-player squad. “I’m humbled, I’m privileged and I’m honoured to be selected,” he told the Geelong Advertiser yesterday. “I can’t wait to wear the green and gold.” Flapper and his wife Linda had already booked flights to Scotland, regardless of selection. What was already an exciting adventure has turned into something much more. “I got the news I hoped for and I’m thrilled,” he said. Flapper’s journey to this point started when he was 12. But the dream accelerated about three years ago when he shed more than 50 kilograms to boost his fitness and endurance levels on the green. Then he started to get noticed. He made his senior international debut 18 months ago and sustained form through to last week’s trans-Tasman test series against New Zealand. The Australian line-up that contested the series at Traralgon has remained unchanged for Glasgow. Flapper, 35, held his spot in the five-strong men’s outfit, in the national team. National coach Steve Glasson said Australia had enjoyed a solid 18 months of international competition. “But we are under no illusion that the Games competition will be intense and we need to be as prepared as we can,” he said “It has been a lengthy process to get to this stage through the trials and training camps. “Everyone should be commended on how they have prepared themselves to this point. “But the hard work continues now.” Bowls has been a part of the Commonwealth Games since the inaugural event in Canada in 1930. Australia has won nine gold, 19 silver and 18 bronze medals in that time. The Glasgow games start on July 24.