NSW CHS Championships a Huge Success
Story by Gavin Holburn – NSW CHS Bowls Convenor
Penrith Bowling & Recreation Club was an amazing host venue for the recent NSW Combined High Schools Championships. The conditions were excellent, allowing the 80 players to showcase some high-level bowls.
The ten sporting regions of NSW school sport were represented and competition was fierce across the ten rinks of play, each regional association competing in two rinks of fours in sectional play, followed by finals.
In the last game of sectional play in Pool A, Western got the win they needed to progress to the Semi-Finals with a solid win against North Coast. Hunter required wins on both rinks against South Coast and they got there with a couple of tight wins.
In Pool B, the last game was only going to decide the top 2 positions with Sydney North and North West dominating the Pool. In the end, it came down to margins, with North West topping the table.
In the semi-finals, Hunter were dominant over a tenacious North West side (36-23) whilst Sydney North held off a late charge from Western (27-19).
The Final was an absolute dogfight and the standard was high class. When Ethan-Scott-Branagan’s Sydney North rink finished ahead of Hunter 14-10, they held an overall 3-shot lead and had shots all around the jack on the other rink. On the last bowl of the game, Hunter’s Koby Kattau trailed the jack back to open space and their side erupted with joy! However, the umpire needed to be called to measure – and 3 shots were confirmed. Both rinks went back out for the extra end. On this occasion, Hunter held a 2-shot lead after the conclusion of Rink “B’. Sydney North held 2 shots going into the last bowl, and this time it was Ethan’s chance to play the winning bowl, and he did so in style!
In the 21-year history of these CHS Championships, none of the four Sydney Associations had won. Sydney North had made history!
During the event we learned of 2021 CHS Representative Ellie Dixon being selected to represent Norfolk Island at the Commonwealth Games! Ellie is still only in Year 11, however, Norfolk Island was moved from NSW schools affiliation to Queensland this year.
Australian Commonwealth Games representative, and local Penrith Junior, Carl Healey, was on hand for photos and a chat with the kids. At the presentation, he gave some insight into his experiences with CHS Bowls and his progress through to his current level. Carl then presented medals to Sydney North, Hunter and North West, as well as to the Driving Competition champions (an all-Sydney affair with the winner being Jayden Shorter from Sydney West).
The NSW side to compete at the School Sport Australia Championships at Club Sunbury in September was announced:
|Jacob Aitken||Keira HS||South Coast|
|Katie Astley||Nepean CAPA HS||Sydney West|
|Sam Bowman||Coonabarabran HS||North West|
|Cooper Dart||Peak Hill Central School||Western|
|Koby Kattau||Rutherford HS||Hunter|
|Zoe Nichols||Hunter River HS||Hunter|
|Maddison Hazell||Junee HS||Riverina|
|Sam Rich||Mudgee HS||Western|
|Tom Rich||Mudgee HS||Western|
|Cohen Ridd||Glendale HS||Hunter|
|Huxley Rowe||Irrawang HS||Hunter|
|Ethan Scott-Branagan||Asquith Boys HS||Sydney North|
|Timothy Thorning||Gunnedah HS||North West|
|Billy Waite||TLSC Berkley Vale Campus||Sydney North|
|Liam Walsh||Queanbeyan HS||South Coast|
|Coach – Peter Foster||James Busby HS||Sydney South West|
|Manager – Dale Smith||Bundarra CS||North West|