The team to beat
The New South Wales ladies are pressing for an unprecedented fourth straight Marj Morris Trophy at this year’s Australian Sides Championships.
The Blues have reigned supreme at Broadbeach, Bendigo, South Burnie and are now looking to add Yokine to the mantelpiece.
The state verse state rivalries will heat up at Yokine Districts Bowling Club this week, April 9-12, when 192 of the best bowlers in the country descend on the West representing the eight state and territories in the annual event.
The Blues star studded line-up includes eight internationals, skipped by Australian Jackaroos Karen Murphy, Kelsey Cottrell and Natasha Scott, who are also joined by four Australian Junior representatives.
The mix of youth and experience is highlighted when rising star Dawn Hayman, 17, will lead for Australia’s most capped international bowler, 495 game veteran Karen Murphy.
Challengers will come from all corners of the country with home town favourites Western Australia boasting the newly crowned world junior singles champion Kristina Krstic.
Queensland was the only state to cause an upset against NSW during their annual test series earlier in the year.
Despite a series victory, Queensland have opted to make three changes to their side including the re-inclusion of Louise Witton, QLD NTC Squad member Kiani Anderson making her debut and former NSW representative Julie Keegan back in the side.
Keegan, the 2008 world fours champion, made herself available for Queensland after a shock omission from the NSW team earlier in the year and will return to the position she left some years ago, playing third for the Australian Captain Lynsey Clarke.
South Australia knocked off the ‘Blues’ in the first round of last year’s Australian Sides Championships and is a bogey team for many states.
Australian Under-25 representatives Renee McPharlin and Breeanna Dickson are now experienced state representatives and will skip the crow eaters along with former Australian representative Penny Landherr.
NSW will have a tough first up game against Victoria, however after a convincing victory in their annual test series in March, the Blue’s will go into this encounter as favourites.
The men’s competition is always tough to predict and will be sure to throw up some nail biting and intriguing results.
Queensland will be aiming for back-to-back titles; however a number of states will be hot on their heels.
NSW have the star studded line-up, Western Australia have the home green advantage, whilst some of the smaller states and territories will be looking to cause an upset and put a stop to the extensive run by Queensland and NSW taking out the Alley Shield for the past 12 years.
For more information on the Australian Sides Championships follow this link to the events page on the Bowls Australia website.