Featuring singles, pairs and triples for both men and women, the multi-disciplines tournament has once again lured a star-studded field including international heavyweights Jeremy Henry (Northern Ireland), Neil Burkett (South Africa) and Kay Moran (Scotland), as well as Delhi Commonwealth Games representatives Mark Casey, Natasha Van Eldik and Lynsey Armitage.
But if qualifying is any yardstick, surviving the six-day assault on the GP event will be no easy feat, with a host of big names failing to win their way through to the main draw of the blue-ribbon singles.
During a brutal qualifying campaign in the lead up to tomorrow’s opening round, among those who failed to win their way through include Queensland Open title holder Paul Jopson, reigning under-25 world champion Sam Shannahan and Armitage, who just last month reaffirmed her billing as one of Australia’s greatest female players with a herculean performance at the Delhi Games.
Nonetheless, four of the top five on the women’s players on the national rankings are lurking dangerously, including world number six Karen Murphy.
“I’d definitely love to win it,” Henry, who is now based at Warilla, said on the eve of the tournament.
“The hardest thing is often qualifying and getting through to the party, once you’re there you can just relax, but hopefully I can.”
Staged from November 28 to December 3, the first two days of the tournament will be split between the Wagga RSL Club and the Wagga Wagga Women’s Bowling Club before reverting to the former for the final four days of the competition and admission is free.
Courtois Straight Through to the Semis
– Pauline Courtois leads after first day