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Bowls

Total investment 2016-17: $1,390,996 (high performance: $667,200; participation $650,000 and other $73,796)

ASC funding as a percentage of total income: 20% 

The Bowls Australia team enjoyed its most successful world tournament campaign abroad with four gold, two silver and one bronze medal from eight disciplines at the world bowls championship, a 34-nation quadrennial event in Christchurch in December 2016.

For the second world championships in a row, all members of the women’s team secured a gold medal in at least one discipline, highlighted by Natasha Scott, Rebecca Van Asch and Carla Krizanic securing gold in both the triples and fours, where they combined with Kelsey Cottrell. A stunning victory by Karen Murphy in the women’s singles will be seen by many as the highlight of the event.

The men’s team was narrowly pipped for the best performed nation across men’s disciplines, by the host- nation New Zealand. Australia finished with one gold in the men’s event, courtesy of Brett Wilkie and Aaron Wilson in the men’s pairs, two silver in the men’s triples and fours and a bronze in the men’s singles.

The Bowls Australia high performance program continues to make significant progress in improving its daily training environment and culture. Competition for places in the Jackeroos squad is becoming increasingly intense with a priority placed on exposing the next group of athletes to international competition. Bowls Australia conducted an extensive high performance review in August 2016 with key recommendations  now being implemented across the network with the engagement of key stakeholders.

While the world championships were successful, the team is still looking for improvement. Consistency, applying and executing structured game plans and mental resilience continue to be priorities. These along with other skill sets will be a major focus in the lead up to the 2018 Commonwealth Games.

Governance commentary

Bowls Australia has been proactive in adopting the ASC’s Mandatory Sports Governance Principles, and performs well when benchmarked against Australia’s Winning Edge sports. It completed board education and evaluations through a whole-of-sport governance review in 2016, and has made good use of tools such as a skills matrix to consistently assess governance gaps in the organisation. Bowls should review its anti-doping, sports science and sports medicine policies as part of a wider review of the sports integrity measures.

2016 Benchmark event // World Championships

Medal target: 4-7

Actual: gold 4 silver 2 bronze 1 total 7

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