Sam Laguzza Retires from State Representative Bowls

by Billy Johnson

Sam Laguzza has officially announced his retirement from State representative bowls, effective immediately. A certified living legend of bowls within New South Wales, Sam finishes his representative career with 322 appearances for the KENO NSW Blues, placing him third on the men’s all-time list of representative matches played. In addition to these caps, Sam has also represented the KENO NSW Senior Blues on 38 occasions since making his debut in October 2005.

Sam saw this moment as the ideal time to step down from State representative duties, noting the abundance of quality players coming through the senior ranks. At 82-years-old, he leaves behind a lasting legacy of competitiveness and commitment that will inspire bowlers of all ages for years to come.

“I’ve really enjoyed my time playing for New South Wales, from my Open side debut back in 1985 right through to playing with the KENO NSW Senior Blues. I love the competition that State bowls provides, and I will look back fondly on all the memories I have taken from my time playing for the mighty Blues.”

Some of Sam’s career highlights include playing with the likes of Darby Ross, John Snell and long-time friend Troy Somerville. When asked if he had a favourite memory, it was undoubtedly winning the 1995 Alley Shield held at Cabramatta, where he was able to share the victory with his son Tony Laguzza who was also in the side.

Despite calling time on representative bowls, Sam has no intention of giving the sport away. In fact, he’s already organising roll-ups at his club Charlestown to help out younger and newer bowlers. “I still love the game, and I’ll continue giving back to others as much as I can.”

Bowls NSW Chair of Selectors Peter Hughes was full of praise for Sam upon hearing of his retirement. “Considering all that Sam has done at the age he is, it’s incredible. In particular, his selection in the inaugural Australian Senior Jackaroos Side in 2019 at the age of 79 shows just how impressive he is as a player. Sam has been the benchmark for senior bowlers in recent years, and he will forever be remembered as a competitor, and a great bloke too.”

With the Australian Sides Championships coming up in October, Sam was quick to wish all KENO NSW Blues sides the best of luck and encouraged everyone to play well and most importantly to support each other. “For all that I’ve achieved playing for New South Wales, I couldn’t have done it without the support of my teammates. That’s what bowls is all about, and what makes playing for the Blues so special.”

Bowls NSW congratulates Sam Laguzza on a stellar career, and wishes him all the best in his future endeavours.

Sam Laguzza Career Achievements

New South Wales Cap No. #810

Australian Cap No. #99

322 Matches for New South Wales State Side (3rd most caps all-time for NSW Men)

38 Matches for New South Wales Senior Side

Current Bowls NSW Hall of Fame Member

Australian Senior Jackaroos representative – 2019

NSW State Fours Champion – 1985, 1991

NSW State Pairs Champion – 1998

NSW State Champion of Champion Pairs Winner – 2001

NSW State Singles Champion – 2002

Sam Laguzza after winning the 2002 NSW State Singles Championship