Kelly to take up challenge in Melbourne for NZ

Andrew Kelly.
Andrew Kelly.
Andrew Kelly is the only member of the Dunedin PBA named in the New Zealand team for the eighth annual Trans Tasman Challenge in Melbourne next month.

The other newcomer in the New Zealand team is Bart Robertson (North Shore).

Laurie Guy (Wellington) gained automatic selection  because he was the best performed New Zealand bowler at last year’s Trans Tasman Challenge in  Hastings.

The other team members are Murray Glassey (Hastings), who was ranked top in last year’s New Zealand PBA, and Craig Merrilees (Southland), who is in the Trans Tasman team for the fourth time.

Kelly (29), a Christchurch structural engineer, travels to Dunedin for each regional PBA event.

He returned to the PBA two years ago to tighten his game in a bid to make the Black Jacks for last year’s World Bowls.

He has been a regular in the Black Jacks 10-man squad over the last seven years but has not been able to break into the top five for the Commonwealth Games or World Bowls.

He has competed in three PBA international World Bowls finals in the United Kingdom.

Bowls is played indoors on an even surface and there is no wind to contend with.

The keys to success on the indoor mats are accuracy, weight control and the ability to shift the jack.

There are no fluke bowls on the indoor greens. Good bowls and consistency get results and Kelly has steadily improved his skills.

Kelly played in the PBA until 2010, when he concentrated on his outdoor commitments with the Black Jacks for  five years.

He grew up in Oamaru and won the national secondary schools singles title when he was a pupil at Waitaki Boys’ High School in 2006.

He has skipped the fours to national outdoor champion ship titles in 2012 and 2014.

He made his international outdoor debut in 2009 when he won a gold medal at the Hong Kong Classic pairs.

Kelly won the World Cup junior singles in 2010.

Australia has won the PBA Trans Tasman Challenge on four occasions and New Zealand three times.

Dunedin’s Ken Walker was selected to play in his seventh Trans Tasman last year but was forced to pull out because of an ankle injury.

He has been appointed manager of the New Zealand team for this year’s event at the Deer Park Bowls Club in Melbourne on August 16 and 17.


Trans Tasman PBA Challenge

Deer Park Bowls Club, Melbourne, August 16 and 17

NZ PBA team: Andrew Kelly, Laurie Guy, Murray Glassey, Bart Robertson, Craig Merrilees. Manager Ken Walker

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