With the festive period upon us, Bowls Australia (BA) would like to take the time to reflect on the year that was in 2017 and look ahead to what shapes as a monumental year for the sport in 2018.
As 2017 draws to a close, there have been many highlights in the sport this year which include the following:
-The increase in regular bowls participation by 5.9%, including a 10.3% increase in social bowls (barefoot, schools, Jack Attack, etc.)
-176 clubs registered for Jack Attack, the short, fast and fun format of bowls
-Over 4,600 clubs, region/district associations, STA offices, schools, LGAs, partners and community groups were visited by Regional Bowls Managers, facilitating the sales of over 1,300 Jnr. Jack Attack kits to clubs and schools as part of the Australian Sports Commission’s Sporting Schools program across Australia
-More broadcast and streaming footage as partnerships continued with SBS (Bowls Show, season two) and with Fox Sports (Bowls Premier League’s and Australian Open), together with multiple events that have been streamed using ‘Rinkside Live’ via the BA Facebook page and in addition, ‘The Bowls Clubhouse’ was launched providing free access to a huge library of bowls footage.
-New branding with a stylised corporate logo was implemented for BA and a five STAs
-Social media growth with a significant increase in the number of followers for BA’s Facebook and Twitter accounts and over 45,000 subscribers to our E-newsletter, Bowls Connect
-Partnerships continued with a solid portfolio of national sponsors, with new event partners in Club Sapphire (Australian Championships) and the Yorke Peninsula Alliance (Australian Senior Sides Championship)
-The continued success of BA national and international events with the Bowls Premier League expanding into New Zealand in early 2017 and the Illawarra Gorilla’s joining the competition. The Australian Open continued to grow (7% from 2016) in the number of entrants and the BPL Cup was launched in 2017 with over 500 teams entering
-Continued success on the world stage by the Australian Jackaroos with multiple gold medals at the Multi Nations event and two Tran-Tasman series.
-BA Awards and Hall of Fame (HoF) recognition – new HoF members inducted included legends Kelvin Kerkow OAM and Rex Johnston OAM, Wayne Turley, Arnold O’Brien, Mark Casey, Greeta Fahey and Leif Selby.
-A new BA President with Darryl Clout assuming the leadership of BA from Nigel Smith at the October 2017 AGM. We thank Nigel for his excellent contribution to the sport and the BA Board
2018 is set to be headlined by Australia’s first home Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast since Melbourne 2006, which looms as the Jackaroos best chance at multiple medals since the highly successful Games in Melbourne.
On behalf of the entire BA team, board and staff, we would like to wish the wider bowls community a safe and happy festive period.
Please note, the BA office will be closed from Friday December 22 and will re-open on Tuesday January 4.