Captain’s diary part 1

by admin

Lynsey Clarke took up bowls at the tender age of 11 and now after two decades of hard work and dedication to the sport she loves, Clarke was bestowed an honourable role within the Australian Jackaroos. 

In 2011 National Coach Steve Glasson OAM announced Lynsey Clarke as the inaugural Australian Captain and she has relished the role ever since. 

Clarke is a true ambassador for lawn bowls and after representing her country with distinction for 13 years she was the perfect person to lead the National Team. 

“When I was first named as the inaugural captain it was a crazy moment; a mixture of emotions ran through me that day, feeling surreal, excited, proud, honoured, challenged, determined, privileged, passionate and happy,” Captain Clarke recalled. 

“It was absolutely one of the most memorable and proudest moments in my 20+ year bowls career.” 

“I think after such a long time competing at the highest level in the sport I love, leadership seemed to come naturally to me and I loved being able to be there for our players and help drive and take our sport forward in a high performance sense.” 

“Some of my own attributes which I have enjoyed passing on to players and larger bowls community through my captaincy are- being a passionate and vocal spokesperson for the players, the team, and the sport of bowls; being an open and honest communicator, encourager and supporter for the team, always striving to be my best in everything I do to ensure I’m a great role model and ambassador for the game of bowls – especially for those coming through the ranks who dream of being the next Australian Jackaroo.” 

Unlike other sports, Clarke is not privy to selection information and has no input into the makeup of the team; however she is also there to support the very team mates that she needs to beat to secure her spot in the green and gold. 

The Australian Jackaroos Squad has just been announced and 20 of Australia’s best will continue along a gruelling selection campaign that will determine which 10 players will be chosen for the Asia Pacific Championships in November this year; Clarke knows all too well what her team mates are going through having such longevity in the game. 
Clarke says selection campaigns are touch and certainly the hardest part of being an elite sportsperson. 

“Everyone loves the thrill of making and playing in an Australian Team but the disappointment of missing selection is something that can cut really deep – whether it’s yourself that has missed out or whether it’s your mates that miss out,” Clarke said. 

“I’ve been on both ends of selection and non-selection and it’s never an easy time.” 

“When you are selected you’re super excited and thrilled yet you can’t help but be disappointed and hurt for your mates that missed out, and when you’re not selected it’s gut wrenching and devastating, yet you want to be happy for your mates that are in – roller coaster,” Clarke joked!

“It does make the process even tougher when you’re really close mates with all of those in the mix for selection.” 

“There never seems to be enough spots to pick everyone that deserves to be in and I think you’ll find that in any sport, especially in Australia.” 

For those who have had the privileged of talking to Australian Captain Lynsey Clarke will know she is never short of a word and certainly never lacks positive energy; therefore this edition of Captain’s Diary has been split into two parts.

In the next edition Clarke will talk about the upcoming arrival of her first child, her endeavours to continue playing internationally and the support elite players receive from their bowling clubs.