Bowls coup for Valley

TRARALGON will welcome the world’s top two bowls teams next year after yesterday securing the rights to host the 2014 Trans Tasman.

The Australian Jackaroos and New Zealand Black Jacks will clash at the Traralgon Bowls Club over three days for the annual test series from 18 March.

Bowls club chair Austin Gapper said the event would put the region on the map.

“It’s such a special thing to have an international event in a regional area, no matter what sport it is, so we were more than happy to jump at the opportunity,” he said.

The club was selected by Bowls Australia using a strict criteria for the greens and off-field facilities.

Mr Gappa said he believed the club’s recent renovations played a major role in securing the event.

“The facilities now can cater for a large number of people, along with our kitchen,” he said

The competition will include more than 60 of the sport’s premier players, comprising of under 18, development and senior players. Traralgon currently has three grass greens and one synthetic green.

As the international event will act as a prelude to next year’s Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, one of the club’s greens will have to be grown to replicate slower, Scottish greens.

“The work that lies in front of us now, it’s enormous. It will require a lot of hard work from the people around the club, but it’s well and truly worth it,” Mr Gapper said.