Broughton and Wales
I am delighted with the positive response my request for profile subjects has been. I am particularly pleased when younger players show interest in taking part. For the final profile of the 2018 season, we meet Emily Gowen, who may be young, but seems to have been around the bowls circuit for a long time, first as a junior and then into the Senior ladies squad.
Whilst short on singles titles, Emily has had a fair bit of success in mixed pairs competitions – most recently the Flintshire League Pairs. She has reached the final of the Welsh Ladies Junior Merit though. Emily is very proud to have represented her country at Junior and Senior level. Like all experienced players, she knows that no game is easy. Her worst moment was losing for Wales at the Wales – v – North Midlands match at Bedworth in 2016, ' without practice – one of the hardest greens I've played on'. She still has ambitions to win the Welsh Ladies Merit, the British Ladies Merit and the Ladies Waterloo. I am quite convinced that at least one if not more of these are well within her scope of talent.
Emily was introduced to the sport along with her Mum, Sarah by Step Dad Francis, and she admits he has been a great influence on helping her to perfect her game. She usually plays two or three evenings a week and in competitions at the weekend. She also represents Wales in the County Ladies team. She started playing at Hoole Park in Chester and now plays for Broughton.
Her love of sport took her to study Sport and Exercise Science at University for three years, where she gained a First; following this, Emily spent a year as a teaching assistant and this has led her to take a Post Grad Certificate in Education to qualify as a primary school teacher this July.
Down time is at a premium for Emily, with bowls commitments and study. However, she enjoys walking the dog – Ralph, and nights out for a meal and cocktails with friends. She used to play football too, but gave this up when she returned to university. We are glad she didn't give up her bowls though.
She has often played doubles with Step brother, Adam – who she says is the better player ' but only just'. Adam now plays Mixed pairs with Sarah and Emily plays with Francis – in the interests of family harmony.
Singer Ed Sheeran is a favourite of Emily's but she likes most music. Films don't feature much in her 'chill out' time but her favourite comedy show is 'Eight Out Of Ten Cats Does Countdown' and in food it has to be include a Chinese takeaway or Nando's. One of Emily's real joys is going on the family holiday to Turkey every year. She has also spent time in the US – ten weeks last summer as a soccer coach across the East coast. There must be something about bowls that makes for fairly relaxed people. Emily is another one who doesn't get stressed by much. Music is a great unwinder for her and so is walking the dog.
Emily has noticed how children don't seem to play outdoors as much today, so exposure to bowls and other sports is limited. Schools could do more to work with bowls groups. This is happening but not everywhere. She also feels all leagues should be mixed for men and women. In bowls, Emily's advice is not to underestimate anyone you play. Anyone can be beaten and it shouldn't stress you out unnecessarily. 'After all. You both have two woods.'
Emily is part of the successful Broughton team
Three top Lady bowlers in one photo