14-year old champion bowler
Gone are the days that bowls was considered a game for “old people”. Nathan Dinning (14) made this very clear when he walked away with the Men’s Singles Open title at the Reading Bowls Championship held on the 23rd April. And to add a cherry on the top, he managed to grab the title by defeating the longest standing member of Reading Bowls, Tom Branford, a member for the past 34 years.
“I just played well on the day and stuck to my game plan,” Nathan, a grd-8 pupil at Impact Independent School in Brackendowns, says. To reach the final, he beat his 14-year old brother Callum in the first round and then gave his father, Ian, “a nice hiding” in the quarter-finals.
Yes, Nathan comes from a long line of family bowlers. “My grandparents, Alison and Allan Dinning, introduced me to the game when I was 11 years old. I loved it from the word go, it lifts my spirits when I’m out here on the bowling greens,” he says.
Nathan has high praise for his fellow bowlers at Reading. “They are so supportive and encouraging. And they treat us youngsters with such respect, I really love being part of this group.”
Nathan practices every Friday afternoon and tries to play at least once a weekend. Mom Gill does the driving around and although she doesn’t play bowls herself, she enjoys watching her guys competing on the bowling greens. “And I make sure I am at all the prize-givings,” she says, clearly very proud of Nathan’s achievements.
Nathan dreams of one day getting his Springbok colours “but for now I’ll aim to get through to play in Districts and then work my way up,” he says.
If you are interested in becoming a member at the Reading Bowls section, kindly contact Bruce Milne on 072 475 6048.