Keen young bowler is rolling with his rellies
LAWN BOWLS: At just 11 years of age, Rockhampton's Cooper Bloxsom will be the youngest bowler on the greens at this weekend's Hook Anderson Memorial Fours.
He will team up with his grandmother Kay McCrohon alongside Eileen Arnold and Yvonne Rutherford for the prestigious tournament, which has attracted 28 teams from across the state.
Cooper's grandfather, Ken McCrohon, will also be playing, with his nephews Cameron and Shane McCrohon and good mate Mark Howe from Biloela.
They will be hoping to replicate the form that helped them win the memorial in 2014 as the only team to go through their five games undefeated.
There is more than $8000 in prizemoney on offer at the two-day event, being played at Diggers Memorial Bowls Club from 9am Saturday and 8.30am Sunday.
Kay knows she and Cooper will be up against some quality bowlers, but they are up for the challenge.
"We're confident. We're certainly going there to put our best foot forward,” Kay said.
"Cooper's feeling pretty good. He and his grandfather and Merv Dunseath played competition last weekend and beat the best team over there, so he's ready to go.”
Kay and Ken are thrilled their grandson is pursuing the same sport that has brought them so much joy for so many years.
"I'm really proud of the little fellow,” Ken said. "He's still learning the game but he loves it.
"I don't play as much as I used to but having Cooper there will get me out a bit more.”
"I love having him there with me,” she said.
"He gets a little frustrated if he doesn't get it right the first time but he keeps on trying until he does.”
Cooper got his first taste of bowls when he was waiting for Kay to finish a game one Saturday late last year.
"I was waiting and I asked if I could have a go,” Cooper said. "Grandma went and got me a set of bowls and I had a go on the other green and I really enjoyed it.
"I joined in December last year and have been playing since the start of the year.
"It's really good to play with my family and I like meeting other people.
"I love the challenge of the game and there's nothing better than when you're in a good lead against older and more experienced bowlers,” he added.
Diggers president Merv Dunseath said it was great someone as young as Cooper was playing the game and had the opportunity to compete in an event like the Hook Anderson Memorial.
Reigning champions Bill Cameron, Trent Smalley, Bob Neilsen and John Lennon will be back to defend their title this weekend, but Dunseath said they wouldn't have it all their own way.
"They'll certainly be in the running again but there are some good players coming,” he said.
"There'll be some hot competition all right.”