2020 New Zealand Gateball Teams Championship from an Australian perspective

When Dennis Bulloch advertised that the N.Z. Gateball Championship was being held at Rose Gardens Croquet Club at Palmerston North 6-8th March, there were some very excited ex-Kiwi players in the Gateball community who were very keen to travel there to compete. As a result three teams were formed from the Queenslanders. One was called Aussie Gold which had players from Rockhampton, Caloundra and Eildon. Judy Tier from Canberra linked in with Southport and two teams were formed – Southport Red and Southport White. There were two players from Mt Gambier who joined with a player from Kew to compete in a composite team which included two local NZ players.

The Aussie Contingent

The draw for the competition was organised later than would have been desired because of the withdrawal of 4 teams from Indonesia. But the positive and very friendly atmosphere of all associated with Rose Gardens Croquet Club meant a ‘can do’ approach took over. Courts were set out for the practice day on the Friday, then early on Saturday and Sunday.

On Friday afternoon Glenda Windust who is an International referee from the Caloundra Mallet Sports Club provided plenty of valuable insights into refereeing for those who were new to the game. Thank you Glenda.

On Saturday the sun shone brightly and the lawns changed speed quite quickly. All teams suffered from balls accidentally being sent off the court.  The young fellows from Rose Gardens CC were skilful with stroking the ball but they were to be shown some hard lessons in the tactics of the game. It was a very positive time for all of them.  By the end of the afternoon, Southport Red team was undefeated after 5 games and won the Championship.The beautiful new trophy of a globe on a wooden stand was presented to the team.

In second place was the Mt Gambier Team. The players did not know each other very well yet achieved good results. Below is the photograph of them with Dennis Bulloch (in red shirt) who organised the Championship.

Barbara Northcott
Queensland State Director

First New Zealand Open Gateball Championship.

Rose Gardens Croquet Club recently hosted the first New Zealand Open Gateball Championships on their lawns in the Esplanade. 

A third of the players in this tournament were from Rose Gardens and the balance from Australian clubs; Rockhampton (Qld), Southport (Qld) Canberra, Mount Gambier (SA), Kew (Vic), Caloundra (Qld) and Eildon (Qld). Some New Zealanders were guest players for Australian clubs and Croquet New Zealand President, Kathie Grant played for Southport as she is a member of that club.

The Mayor Grant Smith, having opened the tournament and run the first hoop, Saturday saw teams of five competing. Here, the tactics of the experienced Australian players told, with the eventual winners, Southport Red, being unbeaten in their five games. The Mount Gambier team were runners up. The better performing of the two Rose Gardens teams was Red Sparks, in fourth place with two wins. 

Sunday was occupied with Doubles play, and was notable for the play of the five participating Rose Gardens teenage members against their more experienced Australian opposition. Logan McKinnon and Jacob Mildenhall were unbeaten in section play, and in the final, lost a close game 16-12 to Philip Brown (Kew) and Leah O’Neill (Mount Gambier) to be runners up. Callum McKinnon and Bradley Forsyth, were second placed in their section and lost narrowly 16-12 to Kathie Grant and Barbara Northcott (Southport) in the playoff for third place.

At Rose Gardens, gateball is offered to members as a code additional to association and golf croquet, and a dozen members turned out for this tournament. We look for bigger numbers for this Tournament, next year, as interest in the game is being shown in other parts of New Zealand, and we would expect more overseas players to participate. 

Rex Oliver, Publicity Officer
Rose Gardens Croquet Club Inc

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

NEWCASTLE TRIPLES GATEBALL CARNIVAL

Eight teams participated in the tournament with players from Newcastle, Toronto, Strathfield, Killara, Jamberoo, Lithgow and Canberra.

What a great event! Lynn’s thorough organisation and time keeping ensured a
smooth program and the many Newcastle volunteers delivered scoreboard and
kitchen duties with efficiency and humour. Oh, how I envy their luxurious clubhouse and expanse of lawns.

I thought that the standard of play and refereeing was a considerable improvement from the 2019 Nationals.

On Sunday afternoon all teams played two games to decide final positions. There were several hard fought close games. Toronto 1 were defeated by MIX (Members from Newcastle, Killara and Lithgow) 13 – 8 to decide 3rd and 4th positions. In the final CanJam (Manuel and Glenda from Jamberoo and Judy Tier from Canberra) were defeated by Lithgow 9 – 8 (John and Penny Park and Robyn Hayes.)

What a great way to kick off our 2020 gateball year.

Judy Tier
Coordinator NSW/ACT Gateball

And more from Lynne Thomas ….

Luckily we chose the weekend that didn’t include a heat wave or destructive storms and our courts were able to withstand large amounts of rain.

8 teams participated with players coming from Canberra, Jamberoo, Lithgow, Toronto, Sydney and Newcastle. 

Lithgow was the standout team of the carnival winning all their round robin matches but the competition for all the other places was very tight and not really decided until all matches had been played. Some teams were made up of seasoned players while others included novices as well as first time captains. 

After the round robin the teams were placed into 2 groups for playoffs according to their final positions.

Lithgow, CanJam (better known as the Jam Cans or Jam Tarts), MIX (Sydney/Lithgow/Newcastle) and Toronto 1 played off for the top spot while Toronto 2, Newcastle White, Epstars and Newcastle Triple Treats played off for the lower places.

After a very close fought, strategic match Lithgow defeated CanJam by one gate to be the overall winners. Congratulations to John and Penny Park and Robyn Hayes.

Thank you to all those who participated and refereed.

A big thank you to all our club members who pitched in in many ways to make this a successful carnival.

We are looking forward to seeing everyone here again next year.

Lynne Thomas
Newcastle Gateball

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Kew Croquet Gives Gateball a Go

On the recent Australia Day holiday Monday Kew Croquet Club held a “Give Gateball a Go” day. The aim was to spread our game to other members of the croquet club and to complete beginners as well.  
 
We had a wonderful day weather-wise and 30 people came to try a sport that very few had every played before.  
 
We had a few from Kew Croquet Club, but also visitors from two clubs (hopefully) interested in taking up the game: Ivanhoe Park and Yarrawonga.  Special kudos to the Yarrawonga members who’d driven a long way to get there.
 
We used a relatively standard approach of having some drills and learning the basic skills first before having a couple of competitive games.  Having learnt from previous experience the emphasis was on teaching croquet players to hit the ball gently and teaching the newcomers to hit it straight….  
 
We also incorporated some drills that might seem more advanced, like deliberately hitting the left side or the right side of the ball.  But this was taken to well by the guests and seemed to give a better feel for the game very early on.  A game learned in Canberra called “International Box” was a big hit.  
 
Philip Brown
Kew Croquet Club
 

Canberra Croquet Club damaged in hailstorm

It was forecast to be destructive and it certainly was. I visited the club around 40 minutes after the storm. The lawns were covered to 50cm with leaves and twigs from surrounding deciduous trees, battered and dead ducks sat amongst it, the clubhouse verandah had huge holes in the roof as did the entire roof of the main building.

The lawns have been significantly pock marked by hail with holes the width and depth of golf balls so will be out of play for some time.

The clubhouse roof has been very severely damaged (ie a number of holes in tiles; vast numbers of cracked tiles; painted veneer protecting tiles has been shredded), the verandah awning has been smashed; and there are a couple of broken windows.

Because of the damage to the roof there has been some seepage of moisture into the roof cavity. It is closed until further notice. The tiles, which contain asbestos-containing materials also create a health risk.

The nearby yacht club suffered major damage to windows and boats, with forty dead seagulls and all cars in the area suffered broken windscreens and dents. The hail damaged our large organic garden – shredding tomato, zucchini and pumpkin leaves. I have not heard of any member’s house damage. The storm area was extremely limited to a narrow swathe from Belconnen, through the CSIRO, ANU, Museum, Parliament House to Fyshwick.

Judy Tier
Canberra Croquet Club