Murray Wenzel / AAP News
The Gold Coast 2018 gold medallist has begun his Birmingham campaign in style with a classy victory over Guernsey and South African opponents.
Aaron Wilson has some regrets about “that” celebration on the Gold Coast four years and has already taken some notes should he get a chance to nail it in Birmingham.
The defending men’s bowls singles champion has started impressively on the challenging, slower greens in Royal Leamington Spa, south-east of Commonwealth Games host city Birmingham.
Cruisy wins over Guernsey and South Africa on Thursday gave him a 4-0 group stage record ahead of Friday’s quarter-finals, numbing the pain after his pairs team were bounced out earlier in the week.
The man known as Disco lit up the Broadbeach greens in 2018, ripping his shirt off in delight as he claimed Games gold.
“It does come up quite a lot,” the 30-year-old told AAP of that memorable Friday night.
“I just wish I had more of a six pack than the keg. And the tan lines … there was a lot of things happening.”
Compatriot Ellen Ryan has set the bar high, climbing into the stands when she claimed Australia’s first women’s singles Games gold – and the first Jackaroos gold in a Games hosted in the UK – earlier in the week.
Wilson revealed a slight mishap though, thankfully one that hasn’t deterred her hot form in the pairs alongside best mate Kristina Krstic that includes a staggering 40-6 win over Canada on the way to Friday’s quarter-finals.
“She stood on a nail the poor little thing,” Wilson said, detailing the moment a piece of timber attached to her foot when she launched into the stands in her Pat Cash at Wimbledon moment on Monday.
“But I wouldn’t have thought she’d felt that.
“I don’t think she was ripping off the shirt though … I haven’t really thought about (what to do if I win another gold) but it’s an exciting thought to be in the final.”
With a gold and silvers in the men’s and women’s para pairs it’s already the Jackaroos’ best Games in a region they’ve traditionally struggled in.
A visit to the same Victoria Park greens in May helped them acclimatise while Bowls Australia also ordered Club Tamborine green keeper Damian Bartlett to produce slower greens at his facility in the Gold Coast hinterland.
The men have bleached their hair like previous touring parties in an attempt to “change the stigma”.
“There’s four years of prep into this and whatever happens from here is our best ever tour, but hopefully I can contribute to it,” Wilson said.
“Gold Coast was more of a party atmosphere where this is more traditional, drawn out and there’s plenty of tension and that makes for great emotion.
“It’s a cool; massive crowds, exciting place to play and conditions are tough so it’s all about adapting.”