SUCCESS: The bronze medal-winning team of Sharon Callus, Connie-Leigh Rixon, Rosemaree Rixon and Rebecca Rixon.
SUCCESS: The bronze medal-winning team of Sharon Callus, Connie-Leigh Rixon, Rosemaree Rixon and Rebecca Rixon.

Could Coast's bronzed bowlers go for gold again?

There aren't many people who can say they won a Commonwealth Games medal with their family, but who could say they've done it twice?

The Birmingham Games may be four years away but the Sunshine Coast's lawn bowls bronze medal-winning Rixon family are ready to go again.

"If we get picked again, absolutely, we'll be going for gold,” Rebecca, 17, said.

Buderim mum Rosemaree, her daughters Connie-Leigh, 20, and Rebecca, and Melbourne's Sharon Callus combined to win Malta's first medal of the Gold Coast Games, and the country's first bowls medal, when they beat Canada 18-9 in the women's fours bronze medal match yesterday.

Canada led for the first five ends, but once Malta hit the front they never relented.

A 9-8 margin at the end of the tenth end proved how close a battle it was, but the "Maltese Falcons” almost doubled their score in the final four ends in a near-perfect execution of their game plan.

"Our game plan was, when we reached halfway, to not drop big numbers and multiples, and cover all bases,” Rosemaree said.

"That was our game plan, that was our tactic, and it ended up coming to fruition.”

Connie-Leigh, who won Malta's first bowls world title when she won a pairs title at the World Youth Championships last year, said that at no time before the final point did she believe they had it won.

"At this type of level, playing these type of competitors, they're absolutely incredible with what they can do,” she said.

"You just have to try to hang in there, try and cut shots when it counts.”

For Rosemaree, it was the culmination of a near decade-long dream of representing her country.

"I've been dreaming of it for eight years, just to play for Malta let alone get on the podium with my daughters and win a bronze medal,” she said.

"It's taken at least two years to get here, to get to this stage, there's been a lot of hard work and tears.

"These girls have had to go through a hell of a lot just to get here, (Connie's) in uni, (Rebecca's) in Year 12, they work, they have jobs. It's been difficult.”

But to stand on the dais alongside a drought-breaking Australian team, who beat South Africa 18-16 for our first lawn bowls gold since 2006, made all of those extra hours at Club Kawana worth it.



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