Darwin Bowls Club host Test match
The Australian Defence Force national lawn bowls team flew into Darwin on Friday 10 March 2017 to compete in the first ever three test series against the Northern Territory, in what is hoped to be the first of many annual challenges. A traditional fours format was played of 3 rinks per side, over tests on Friday night, Saturday afternoon and Saturday night. The ultimate prize was to win the overall big board score, as rink wins or individual test match wins would only count in case shots up were level, and a countback was required.
The ADF won the Friday night game in front of a large noisy and parochial home crowd that created an electric atmosphere for players and spectators alike. The NT won the Saturday afternoon test with a remarkable display of skill, teamwork, encouragement and support across all rinks. With everything to play for in the third and final test, both teams threw everything into an excruciatingly close game, ultimately narrowly won by Defence, who showed a steely nerve and great consistency under pressure. The standard of play from both sides was very high, and congratulations must go to all players for putting on such an exciting display, and showing great sportsmanship over the tournament.
The winner after all of that, after over 1520 live bowls had been played (more were played but many ends were killed), was the ADF - by only three shots! Congratulations to national ADF bowls. Maybe in 2018 it will be the Territory's turn