The Point Chevalier Pirates have a new favourite son.
Aiden Takarua, 19, will skip the Pirates in the inaugural season of the Bowls3Five televised league, starting later this month, looking to emulate the success of Pt Chev icon Stacey Jones.
Jones emerged from the central Auckland rugby league club of the same name to become a Warriors and Kiwis legend. He is now a member of the Point Chevalier Bowling Club.
While Jones enjoys a casual roll-up, he leaves the competitive playing to the likes of Takarua.
The teenager has been playing at the club since he was four and is now of the brightest bowls talents in Auckland.
“He’s a freak, in a positive way,” Pirates team-mate Alex Reed said.
“He is very young, but he can read a head very well and he’s capable of playing any shot in the book.
“He’s probably unfairly known for his drive shots because they’re really quick and spectacular…but he’s capable of playing the full range.”
Reed and fellow indoor bowler Jenny Stockford will join Aiden Takarua in Pt Chev’s first choice trio.
“I think it’ll be helpful having played a bit of indoor bowls because…we’re used to short games,” Reed said.
“It’s very rare that you get more than a nine end game in indoor bowls…and I think that’ll help game plans.”
Graham Edwards, Angela Temple and Jenny Jones have also been named on the Pirates’ roster and are there “in case something happens”.
“I know the other two want a game, but I don’t really care if I get a game or not,” Jones said.
“I’m just happy to head along and make noise in the background.”
Jenny Jones has been the manager of the Point Chevalier Bowling Club for the last 20 years and embodies the club’s family spirit.
The club has become a community hub and now boasts more than 400 members.
“Every week we’re probably getting half a dozen new members which is mind-blowing really,” Jones said.
And the name, the Pt Chev Pirates?
“We went to the league club [in the early 2000s] and…asked to take on the Pirates [name],”
“They were happy with that and as a result we’ve both prospered.”
What is Bowls3Five?
Bowls3Five is a new fast format of the game which aims to provide a competition where everyone interested can get involved. Depending on the competition you play in, you can face a set number of ends, a shot clock, double points, and a tiebreaker end. Bowls3Five aims to fit into busy lifestyles of those finding themselves short on time but still wish to compete in sport and those who are stepping up to accept the challenge of the shorter format.
Bowls3Five offers three levels of competition – a social format for twilight competitions, a nationwide interclub competition and the inaugural Bowls3Five televised six-team league. It will be broadcast live on SKY Sport on Tuesday and Wednesday nights for six weeks From October 23 to November 28, 2018 at the New Lynn Bowling Club in Auckland. Specifically for television, the games will be played in one direction with two sets of five ends. If each team has won a set or both sets are drawn there will be a tie-break end to decide the winner of the game. The televised league starts with a double round-robin draw, all teams playing each other twice over the first five weeks. The six teams will then be ranked heading into the finals which are played in week six