Cheryl Lindfield is quick to dispel any idea that the sport of bowls is a sedate pastime exclusively for the older generation.
"If you watch a fast game it's like the difference between test cricket and one day cricket. It can be very fast," she said.
However, the 64-year-old, who has been active in the sport for 40 years, having first watched it at the 1982 Commonwealth Games in Brisbane, is also quick to point out how inclusive bowls is - for all ages and all abilities.
Although previously a squash player, Cheryl was advised to give up sport altogether when she developed a muscular skeletal disability. Not to be beaten, she took up bowls and hasn't looked back.
Last year at 63 Cheryl, who supports her weight with a walker, was the oldest competing member of the 429-strong Australian team at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games where she took out a silver in the women's para pairs. In the 2022 Trans Tasman she was the overall team/para-team champion.
Cheryl bowls out of Mt Gravatt, and in September took home a bronze medal at the World Bowls Championships with partner Serena Bonnell.
"I think what's always appealed to me is that almost anyone can play bowls, all generations," she said. "You can play with your family and throughout your entire life.
"A lot of people feel they have to give up sport because of a bad back or bad knees, but you can still play bowls.
"I've played other sports and there's a natural time when you have to give those sports up. With bowls you can play your whole life - I've been beaten by 90-year-olds. You can use a wheelie walker or a wheelchair or a stick to get about and you can use a bowling arm if you need to."
Cheryl said people are taking up the sport at all ages.
"We have juniors, those in their 20s and some who don't take it up until they're older. I have never come across someone who didn't say, 'I wish I had taken this up earlier'. It's addictive."
Outside bowls, Cheryl is an human resources manager and executive coach who enjoys being in nature, reading and spending time with family and friends. Last year she received the Australian Sports Medal from the Governor General.
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