Deer Park take to a year of big-time bowls

Deer Park's David Holt. Photo by Damjan Janevski.

A game-changing summer is off and running for Deer Park.

The Parkers are officially part of the Bowls Victoria top-flight premier division after opening the season with an agonising one-shot loss to Bundoora RSL at Ballarat Road on Saturday.

The club is headed for an end-of-season extravaganza that will have the rest of the Victorian bowls community taking note of the Parkers when they host the showpiece event on the calendar, premier division grand final day.

Parkers president Neil Cromie marvels at his club’s facilities every time he arrives for training or match days and cannot wait to showcase them to the wider bowls community.

“I think Bowls Victoria are starting to realise we’re a club that’s going places,” he said.

“We’ve won a lot of prestigious events because now we’ve got the facilities.

“We recently hosted the under-18 Victoria-Tasmania series, we’ve got the senior Victoria-Tasmania at the club and we’ve got the over-60s singles finals. We’re excited by these opportunities.”

The premier division grand final has long been held at the Mulgrave Country Club.

But now that Deer Park has won the rights to the big event, Cromie plans to lock away the big event for many years to come.

“Our intention is to keep it for as long as we possibly can and make someone earn the right to get it off us,” Cromie said.

Cromie says the grand final rights are an endorsement of the growth in Deer Park and its surrounds.

“We’re now in the premier league, Deer Park Football Club have just won five premierships in a row, so the whole area is really developing and changing and the attitudes are changing with it, as well,” he said.

Deer Park took three of the four rinks against Bundoora RSL on Saturday, but a heavy loss in one earned it a 73-72 loss.