Matt does the miles
PARK Beach Bowling Club junior star Matt Miles is on top of the lawn bowls world after clinching his first national title.
Playing at Halekulani on the Central Coast against the best junior bowlers in the country, 17-year-old Miles repaid the faith of the state selectors who handed him the difficult singles role by outlasting Tasmanian star Brendon Peck 21 to 17 in the gold medal play off.
He then backed this up by claiming a bronze medal in the triples discipline the next morning.
Club publicist Corey Daley said the result caps an outstanding 2007 for the youngster.
"Indeed, his whole junior career has been a triumph," Daley said.
"In the past twelve months Matt debuted in the men's district, zone and now New South Wales Country representative sides as well as claiming all three junior district titles, a first grade zone pennant and finishing runner-up in the NSW Under 18 state singles championship."
Miles' campaign at the Australian Junior championships started cautiously with his first match against the Victorian representative almost being his undoing.
He just managed to scrape home for a one shot success in the first to twenty one shots event.
The close call must have lit a fire under the talented teen as he destroyed his Western Australian opponent in round two, allowing him just five shots.
"There was much talk about the quality of his Queensland opponent in the match to determine the finalists," Daley said.
"However, Matt showed a cool head to dispatch his nemesis by eight and book his berth in the gold medal match."
The final proved to be a rematch from a one-off Test less than four days earlier against Tasmania which Peck had won by two.
This time Miles buckled down and with months of training for this one game finally paying dividends he reversed the previous result for a 21 to 17 victory.
The two medals will sit nicely on the Miles family trophy cabinet alongside his 'player of the series' trophy from the recent tri series between NSW juniors, NSW Combined High Schools and ACT Juniors.
"Hopefully the biggest accolade will be delivered to Matt this week when the Australian Junior side is announced for the annual Trans Tasman clash with New Zealand," Daley added.
"He's a month shy of his 18th birthday and I can think of no greater way to end his days as a junior than with national selection.
"The fairytale ending is a very distinct possibility."