While most of the talk of the BLK National Open Championships has been of the likes of Forsyth and Lawson, Edwards and Smith, and so on, moving around the greens one can not but help recognise the special efforts of a number of other players. Players who may not be very well known away from their home clubs or provinces, but bowlers out there fighting hard and fair.
One such player is Graham Low, from the Te Rangi club in Invercargill.
Low has impressed throughout the championships with his temperament and delivery, both cool and controlled.
Low actually boasts a rich history at indoor bowls, where he is currently a member of the New Zealand executive. He has won a bucket load of Southland titles, five South Island titles and two New Zealand crowns – the triples with his wife Jan and son Gary, and the mixed pairs with Jan.
That indoor background has certainly served Low well in the outdoor game, where his accurate draw game has been consistently displayed throughout the championships. He holds seven Southland outdoor titles.
The 66-year-old qualified in the singles, winning his first two matches in post section, before dual champion Shaun Scott ended his run 21-19 in the third round.
Leading in the pairs for Paul McKinnel, Low is through to the quarterfinals, having beaten one of the tournament favourites, Richard Girvan in the first round of post section, and then edging out Sean Thomson in the third round. Low returns to Taieri on Saturday for the quarterfinals.
He also put together a very honest effort in the fours, where with Steve Sanders (skip), McKinnel (second) and Earl Doidge (lead), they overcame losses in the first two section play matches, winning the rest to qualify.
The side then ousted fellow Southlander Craig Merrilees in the first round of post section before falling 20-12 to Ali Forsyth’s imposing side.
“I enjoy the intensity of the competition,” Low said after the fours exit. “And the camaraderie of the championships. Meeting new friends and renewing old acquaintances.”