Home' Army News : July 21st 2011 Contents SPORT 35
Army July 21, 2011
By Maj Al Green
THE annual Bill Coolburra
Shield that pits the Palm Island
Skipjacks against the Army's NQ
Thunder rugby league team has
been won by the Skipjacks 46-30.
The annual match started out
four years ago as a way of strength-
ening the relationship between the
indigenous community of Palm
Island and the Army.
Bill Coolburra, in whose honour
the shield is named, was a Vietnam
veteran. As a sapper, Mr Coolburra
performed heroically as a tunnel rat
with the 3rd Field Troop, RAE.
Mr Coolburra, who died in
2009, was highly respected in the
North Queensland community
for his support and mentoring of
indigenous youth. Over the years
he actively encouraged youth par-
ticipation in sport as a pathway to a
healthy and purposeful life.
The 2011 Bill Coolburra Shield
was played on July 7. The day start-
ed with a visit to Mr Coolburra's
burial site where wreaths were
laid. This was then followed by a
moving speech by Mr Coolburra's
widow Aunty Edna Coolburra who
said she was glad Army visited
Palm Island to play this, the fourth
The Army players at times
seemed dwarfed by the size of the
Skipjacks but were unperturbed and
their speed and fitness was up to the
task at hand.
The Palm Islanders dominated
early with Army fighting back and
Game on: Gnr Justin
Donnelly tries to shirk a
Skipjacks' tackle (above) as
e heads for the line in the
annual Bill Coolburra Shield
played on Palm Island, and
nset), Army skipper Cpl
Leon Abdul-Rahman and
Skipjacks captain Fred Bulsey
et ready to lay a wreath in
memory of Bill Coolburra.
Photos by Maj Al Green
Good results for
for ADF rowers
By LS Paul Berry
THE Defence Rowing
Association (DRA) took its first
competitive strokes at the 2011
Australian Masters Rowing
Championships in Tasmania in
The newly formed DRA, fresh-
ly approved by the ADF Sports
Council, contested five events at
a chilly but spectacular Lake
DRA Coordinator Brig Alison
Creagh, Army HQ, said the team
was well supported, with everyone
actively participating and represent-
"We successfully competed at
the Rowing Masters Championships
with some pretty good outcomes
from people who have only been
rowing together for a short time,"
Brig Creagh said.
"There was a lot of interest in
the DRA and Rowing Australia is
keen to support us."
The Mixed Masters C Quad
Scull and Men's Masters E Double
Scull finished a credible fourth in
their events while the other events
were hotly contested.
Rowing is becoming increas-
ingly popular as a high-intensity,
low-impact sport beneficial to over-
The competition classifications
and teamwork elements allow any
age group to be active and competi-
tive, also offering great rehabilita-
tion opportunities for people who
have suffered injuries.
An adaptive rower category
allows people with physical disabil-
ities, visual impairment and intel-
lectual disability to compete.
While it has a strong presence
in Canberra, with Defence rowers
at RMC, ADFA and Defence mem-
bers associated with civilian rowing
clubs throughout the city, the DRA
aims to create a network of Defence
rowers around Australia.
"The intent of the DRA is to
allow Defence civilians and mil-
itary personnel, both regular and
reserve, to row with affiliated civil-
ian rowing clubs in each state and
territory, then come together for an
annual regatta and look to compete
at Australian championships," Brig
"We aspire to compete in some
of the international rowing cham-
pionships as well, but all of the
details of how we intend to oper-
ate are being worked through at the
moment," she said.
For more information about the DRA, email
Brig Alison Creagh at alison.creagh@
defence.gov.au, or Leut-Cmdr Kym Fisher
Cut above rest: The men's masters E double scull compete in the Australian Masters Rowing
Championships in Tasmania finishing fourth in their class.
Photo courtesy of dalecummingphotos.net
By Cpl Zenith King
ARMY tenpin bowlers took out the
doubles and GB plate in the Tenpin
Bowling combined services champi-
onships contested from June 20-24 at
Aspley Tenpin in Queensland.
The competition consisted of 10
singles games, four doubles and four
team games, after which the top 16 com-
peted in a 15-game match play for the
Australian Defence Tenpin Bowling
Association Masters while the rest
played off for the GB Plate.
What started out as a social sporting
interest has resulted in a win for Cfn
Andrew Schmidt after he beat his oppo-
nent Paul Shields (APS) 200 to 194 in
the GB Plate final.
"It's hard not to feel happy about
bowling against my state rep and win-
ning against him," he said.
"I've entered quite a few competi-
tions and only walked away with a third
and fourth for my division, often just
scraping out by a few pins. This year has
been really good for me."
Bowling 8-12 games a day made for
a tough week of competition, but like all
the competitors, Cfn Schmidt was not
"The days were long but we all talked
and laughed, kept our morale high, and
bowled through the pain," he said.
Heading into the competition, Cfn
Schmidt said he felt confident but with
everyone watching in the finals, he was
a little unnerved.
"As the week progressed, I saw some
exceptional bowling and began to ques-
tion whether I would be able to get a
good result," he said.
"Especially when I had to reconsider
the way I bowled from day one due to
the way the lanes were oiled."
Army's success continued with a win
in the doubles by a combined team rep-
resenting the ACT.
One part of the winning doubles
team was WO2 Steve Ritchie who part-
nered up with Air Force competitor Cpl
"We had a good result as we both
bowled well and won all our games
against the other state teams," WO2
The singles champion was AB Derek
Admans and overall champion was Bob
The national team will compete at
the Tenpin Bowling Australia (TBA)
Nationals at Rooty Hill in October.
NATIONAL TEAM: Rob Charles (APS), AB Derek
Adams, AC James Wood, Mark Jordan (APS),
Cpl Aaron Kellett (RAAF), Cpl Mark Niciejewski,
Cpl Andrew Silvester, Sgt Michael Watson, FSgt
Brett Byers, Sgt Kieran Wyllie (RAAF), Sgt Paul
Verrall (RAAF), WO2 Rod Parker, Jan Nordin
(APS), LCpl David Edwards, Cpl Jason Lindsay
(RAAF), Maj Jamie Arnell, PO Brad Fullerton,
FSgt Dennis Dillon, Brett Kleidon (APS) and
WO2 Steve Ritchie.
Palm Islanders skip ahead in Shield
at half-time the score favoured the
Army pulled away early in the
second half, dominating the centre
with three unanswered tries to lead
30-18 and looked like they had the
game wrapped up.
The Army line, however, was
continually challenged in the last 20
minutes as the Islanders took their
attack out wide.
Five unanswered tries resulted as
the Skipjacks' outside backs domi-
nated with brilliant individual efforts.
his GB Plate
Photo by Cpl Glenn Power
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