Sidney lawn bowler wins silver at nationals

Sidney lawn bowler sporting some new hardware after earning silver medal at nationals in Montreal

Lawn bowler Anne VanBastelaere

Lawn bowler Anne VanBastelaere

A Sidney lawn bowler is sporting some new hardware after earning a silver medal at last month’s nationals tournament in Montreal.

Anne VanBastelaere, 66, secured a second-place victory at the Canadian National Lawn Bowling Championships in the ladies fours category after six long days (Aug. 20-25) of play.

“When you get into this level, you really have to prepare for it, be up for it, and go there with that kind of focus so you can concentrate all day. We’re playing seven complete hours, six days straight,” VanBastelaere said.

The Peninsula woman, who’s been bowling for 16 years, was joined on B.C.’s ladies fours team by three Vancouver-based bowlers.

The team won seven of its nine games in round robin play, but lost to the Manitoba team in the gold-medal match.

It was VanBastelaere’s fifth trip to nationals, where she’s won previous medals in single, triples and fours play.

“When I go to the nationals, I recognize people from all the other provinces, and it’s like old friends when we get together and see each other,” she said.

The camaraderie and positive social aspect of the game is what’s kept VanBastelaere coming back to bowl.

“It’s a really nice sport. Everyone’s very polite,” she said. “It’s a lot of fun.”

And a knack for the sport runs in the family. While VanBastelaere began playing because of her parents, her granddaughter Katelyn Brierley, is one the best under-25 players in Canada.

VanBastelaere bowls out of the Sidney Lawn Bowling Club, located near Tulista Park, which runs games and events year-round.