2016 School Sport Victoria State Championships
Using a wheelchair wasn’t how Hudson Bowman expected to be rolling on to the green in the 2016 School Sport Victoria State Championship Finals.
The previous month, Heathmont East Primary School had booked their ticket into the Primary School State Championship by finishing runners-up to defending champions Wattleview Primary School and narrowly edging out St Timothy’s Primary and Balwyn North Primary at North Balwyn Bowling Club.
All of the Heathmont East Primary School team including Hudson were incredibly excited about the opportunity to compete for their school in a State competition.
The School had been practising with Bowls Victoria Schools Challenge co-ordinator, Laurie Browell before and up to the Regional Finals and had sessions planned at Heathmont Bowling Club in the lead up to the 2016 State Finals on October 11.
Then just one week after playing in the State Regional Final, Hudson broke his leg in the playground at lunchtime after running and climbing on equipment with his friends.
Cassandra, Hudson’s mother, quickly rushed to the school to learn of the extent of his injury. After finding that it was a clean break, Hudson, who was determined to keep bowling said: “You can still bowl with a broken leg can’t you, Mum? Otherwise I’m going to miss out on the State Finals!”
Due to the extent of Hudson’s injury, he needed a full leg cast and a wheelchair, as he was unable to be put on crutches.
Hudson’s grandparents, Jan and Kevin Bowman – both bowlers at Heathmont Bowling Club – helped Hudson by giving him tips on how to bowl despite being in a wheelchair.
Jan and Kevin also provided the information that the wheelchair could be used on a green, if it was okay with Darebin City Bowling Club – the venue for the School Sport Victoria Primary State Final.
Cassandra said: “Hudson’s teammates were rapt by him being in a wheelchair. They were able to push him around in the training sessions and even sign his cast!”
Hudson attended the State Championships via a wheelchair and managed to enter the green via a ramp provided by Darebin City Bowling Club.
Hudson bowled incredibly well, including landing a bowl right next to the jack in his final game!
Cassandra, Jan and Kevin proudly watched on as he was able to play in the state finals with his Heathmont East teammates. Cassandra mentioned that “even after breaking his leg, it was fantastic that there was a way Hudson could get onto the green and bowl for his school.”
Heathmont East competed in the State Final and finished equal third behind finalists Chelsea-Patterson and Wattleview Primary School.
Wattleview Primary beat Chelsea-Patterson in a one-end bowl off to claim the title, after ends won were level at 2-2 as time expired.
Many clutch bowls in the final end ensured Wattleview were able to secure their second SSV Primary State Championship in as many years.
Both the Primary School and Secondary School finals came down to the last end – Bacchus Marsh winning the State Final defeating Sacred Heart Yarrawonga.
The final had many lead changes right to the final end. Bacchus Marsh was down 7-8 after nine ends, but managed to pick up four shots in the 10th end to win 11-8.
The day was well represented across the state, with schools coming from as far as Yarrawonga, Cobden, Warrnambool and Bendigo.
Well done to all teams who competed in the day. Thanks to Darebin City Bowling Club for hosting the event and thanks to Jeremy, Tim and Howard from School Sport Victoria for coordinating a great State Championship day.
If your club is interested in getting involved with schools, or hosting a School Sport Victoria Bowls Day next year, please get in touch with Sean at email@example.com or contact (03) 9861 7109.