City of Echuca bowler Russell Evans played his last game of bowls on Saturday, finishing his career with a premiership.By Zach Hubber
It was a particularly special afternoon for City of Echuca bowler Russell Evans, whose division two side claimed the Campaspe Valley Bowls Division championship against Moama.
Evans was diagnosed with spinal muscular atrophy six years ago, an autosomal recessive disease which has taken its toll of late.
The 69-year-old mustered enough energy to play in Saturday’s grand final, thanks to the help of his teammates.
‘‘I struggle a bit with walking, but the fellas do a good job helping me out,’’ Evans said.
‘‘It’s been a bit difficult struggling along, but I’m not complaining.’’
The Echuca resident’s sons, Paul and Phillip, were in attendance, as were his grandchildren Jack, Jayde and Tom.
Evans, whose rink won by eight shots, said it was great to win in front of his family and just as great to defeat minor premier Moama.
‘‘It’s good to win the final because the last one was back in 2005 when I was playing division five,’’ he said.
‘‘I played in the grand final in division two last year but we fell at the last hurdle.
‘‘Moama’s a hard side to beat, they’re always around the top.’’
Evans praised the team work and camaraderie of the players, which he said was crucial in the club’s win.
He first joined the club in the early 1980s before a break and a stint with Lockington.
Evans returned to City of Echuca in the late 1990s and has stayed with the club since.
He aims to limit his time on the greens through winter as he continues to battle his disease.
‘‘Win, lose or draw I’ll just keep trying my hardest out there,’’ he said.
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