August 31st, 2023Amanda to compete in Deaf Bowls Champs, Scotland
Words: Eve Lamb | Image: Contributed
Hepburn’s Amanda Care is heading off to Scotland to compete in the International Deaf Bowls Championships.
It’s a major achievement for the local businesswoman who was diagnosed with severe to profound hearing loss as a very small child.
Amanda only took up bowls five years ago, but took to it instantly, after getting tired of merely watching from the sidelines as her husband Kevin enjoyed his bowling on the greens.
Amanda has flown out bound for Edinburgh and, once there, will travel about 20 minutes each day of the international champs, held over September 1-14, to compete on the Colinton Bowling Club greens.
There will be 85 bowlers in total competing, including bowlers from Ireland, New Zealand, Scotland, England and Australia, Amanda says.
It’s the first time the local bowler has ever competed in the world championships. It’s also the first time she has ever been to Scotland, despite recently discovering that she is genetically 45 per cent Scottish, and even boasts a family clan, the McLeods.
Amanda is one of 14 Australians – 12 of them competitors – who are making their way over to Scotland for the championships and once there she will find out which events she will compete in. These may include singles, doubles, triples or fours with men’s and women’s divisions.
Amanda says that despite being rated severe to profoundly deaf she is able to get by just fine with the help of technology including hearing aids, specialised apps and Bluetooth which enables her to use telephones for conversation.
Both she and Kevin are keen members of the Deer Park Bowling Club, although Amanda has also enjoyed playing pennants and socialising at the Daylesford Bowling Club as well.
“These world championships are held every four years but with Covid they got delayed. The last championships were held in New Zealand,” Amanda says.
Amanda also says Scottish greens are notorious for being “heavy” while Australian greens, conversely, generally tend to be “fast”.
So to prepare for the championships she has been playing bowls every day on the heaviest greens onto which she can readily find her way.
“I’ve been practising at Invermay because they’re heavier greens,” she says. She’s also been working hard on boosting general strength and fitness.
“I’ve been working out with Beth at Integrated Fitness in Daylesford, and bowling five days a week,” she says.
“Bowling is such a skilful game too. It requires a lot of headspace. You have your good days and your bad days. It’s quite a humbling game. Some days you just can’t get it together while other days you’re on fire.”
Amanda is in her early 50s, runs her own professional organising and decluttering business, which she loves, and also enjoys taking on the older bowlers who, just quietly, are known to be ferociously competitive at times.
“I love competing against the older bowlers, showing them what I can do. A lot of them have been bowling for 20 to 30 years,” Amanda says.
She loves the social aspect of the sport and is also looking to compete in the annual Australian Deaf Games set for Newcastle at the end of January.
“I have competed in them once before and got a bronze medal, but at the time I was a fill-in for a Sydney team because one of their girls broke a leg,” she says.
“I used to play golf. I’m much better as a bowler.”
Amanda has promised to let The Local know how she goes in Scotland.