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Bowls club pushes transformation

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Intervaal President Jan Brits (left) and Warrenton player Robben Chaamano who finished third in the 2022 Intervaal Singles. Picture: Supplied

Transformation and development of clubs have always been an uphill battle because of the impression that lawn bowls is a sport for older white men to play.

WARRENTON Bowls Club have resolved to forge ahead with a plan to attract players from historically disadvantaged communities to partake in the sport as it also readies itself to tackle a slew of local and district games this season.

Jacques Swanepoel, Exco member and club coach said: “Warrenton bowls club has restarted this year’s events calendar determined in its effort to engage the surrounding historically disadvantaged communities in a bid to get them interested in the sport of lawn bowls.

“Transformation and development of clubs have always been an uphill battle because of the impression that lawn bowls is a sport for older white men to play.

“But the club has been very active in promoting the sport within the community of Magareng and planning with support to get the sport into local schools if possible. Marketing officers of the club believe that we can only really save the sport of bowls and make our club relevant if we can reach the broader community.

“We mainly use social media to share the good work and news from the club to all members of the community.”

Swanepoel believes that lawn bowls can be a great sport for all those who are looking for a low impact sport that the whole family can take part in.

“Our club has over the last few years done a lot to support our players and we started 2022 with few goals in mind.

“First is to create heroes or role models for the community to look up to. With this in mind we have changed our training to hopefully produce better results and a few players are making it big in sub-district competitions.

“This first goal was reached this past weekend when one of our players, Robben Chaamano reached the second stage of the 2022 Intervaal Singles championship and ended the tournament in third spot.”

Coincidentally, Chaamano last week did so well in the local circuit and district elimination rounds that he progressed to the provincial knockout stages of the Northern Cape Bowls Top 16 Singles tournament which took place in Kimberley on 15-16 January.

Swanepoel added, “The second goal is to get a local schools programme on the go and promote the sport to the Under-15 age group. The club believes that this grassroots development could pay off in the long run, since gaps are identified in provincial junior national sides in this age group.

“But support is needed to get equipment and training of teachers to help run the programme,” he told the DFA.

Swanepoel said the club recently started working with local district departments of Sport, Arts and Culture to make this a goal that the club can tick off this year.

The third goal is to upgrade and develop the facilities of the club. The Magareng Bowls club is currently awaiting results of a lotto application that when successful and implemented locally, will form part of a five-year plan to make the club a possible future model for other clubs in the area.

“While all this is happening, the club will continue to promote the sport in our community,” Swanepoel said.

Swanepoel said that he was confident that a future bowls superstar could come from the club and the club management will keep working to find that hidden talent in the area.

Meanwhile, Swanepoel released the Intervaal circuit results of the sub-districts competitions which were held last week despite a pouring rain that disrupted some of the other sub-districts qualifiers.

Intervaal sub-districts were able to complete their tournament and will now wait to find out how many of their players will progress to the Northern Cape Top 16 that will take place in Kimberley on February 12 and 13.

Results from the Intervaal tournament are as follows:

Mens results were dominated by players from Hartswater bowls club with the winner, second and fourth spot taken by members of the club. Winner Gert Opperman (gold), Danie Koekemoer (silver), bronze Robben Chaamano (Warrenton Bowls Club – bronze), and Wimpie du Toit in fourth place.

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