The Bocce Team Challenge final was a great success! The five-week event attracted six teams with more than 50 participants – many of which were new to the sport of bocce, as well as some seasoned players.
The final was a thriller with the lead changing at every end, right to the last bowl where Lucas Mikolic threw and hit the opposing bowl to win the game and the title for his team to become the top Bocce Team Challenge inaugural winners for 2022.
The Bocce Team Challenge is a Bocce Australia initiative, and part of the Bocce One five-year plan. John Inglese was enlisted by Bocce Australia to help formulate a competition that would attract novice players to the sport and be the standard ‘entry pathway’ to be promoted at all Bocce affiliated clubs. After visiting three states, numerous clubs and gaining lots of feedback from a number of passionate bocce players, the Team Bocce Challenge format was developed.
“It is great to see the success of this format and we will be promoting more clubs to take this in 2023. It is all part of the five-year strategic plan to expand the sport to a wider community; people of all abilities, all genders, and all ages,” said Bocce Australia’s President Frank Funari.
“Bocce is a sport that is fun and can be enjoyed by all. We now need the clubs to embrace this new entry to the sport format, as it is a win-win for bocce and the club, as most competitors had a meal at the club bistro before the game and then enjoyed a drink after the game.”
Angela, one of the many players, said: “This is a great way to spend an evening with friends playing a fun, friendly game and then relaxing over drinks. I’m looking forward to the next tournament”.
Bocce Australia, with the state bocce federations, plan to expand this new format to more clubs in 2023 with the next already under discussion scheduled for mid-February 2023.
Special thanks to John Inglese, all the participants, the Bocce Victoria senior players, and the coaches that assisted the teams. Special thanks to the Veneto Club and Sonja Velo for allowing the Veneto Club to be the inaugural host club for this new format, and to Rick Gatto who helped with the court preparations, plus the fabulous barbecue and prizes put on by the Veneto Club as part of the gala final night’s competition.