Commonwealth Games para-bowls star Garry Brown reckons his sport is thriving

Garry looks in a determined mood to launch a para-bowls medal bid in the Gold Coast (Pic by Jeff Holmes)
Garry looks in a determined mood to launch a para-bowls medal bid in the Gold Coast (Pic by Jeff Holmes)

Kirkmuirhill para-bowls ace Garry Brown reckons his sport is thriving as more people in this country try their hand at it.

Lanark-born Garry (35), who works voluntarily as a swimming teacher and coach for South Lanarkshire Leisure, will be part of Team Scotland’s B6/B7/B8 triples team trying to make their mark at the Commonwealth Games competition in Australia from April 5 to 13.

Blackwood Victoria Bowling Club member Garry said: “At Glasgow 2014, we noticed a big uplift in the number of people with disabilities coming along to try their hand at para-bowls.

“And it was even more special because the Games were at home and we could make the most of that increase in interest.

“Over the last few months, again, we’ve noticed an increase. We host development days across the country and these are steadily getting busier and busier.

“The Games definitely show people that sport is for everyone and we are always really happy to see more interest in para-bowls.”

Garry and Scotland mates Mike Nicoll and Michael Simpson begin their Gold Coast campaign at Broadbeach Bowls Club tomorrow (Thursday) and Garry has high ambitions.

He added: “We never aim for anything less than gold medals – and we’re not unique in that aspect.

“Everyone here is striving for gold so there’s a lot of competition!

“However, we’ve been practising as often as we can all across the country and we’re here to play our best.

“If that means walking away with a medal then we’ll be very happy!”

Garry, who has cerebral palsy, has represented Scotland since 2009.

He made appearances for his country at the 2011 and 2015 IBD World Championships.

He has previously won Scottish titles at both able bodied competitions and equivalent events for players with disabilities.