NEWLY crowned Australian Police singles bowls champion Warren Cocksedge from Taree will now turn his attention to the State open singles championship to be played at Ettalong starting on May 24.
He qualified for State by winning the Zone 11 singles.
Cocksedge carries good form into the tournament. However, he's realistic about his chances.
"Sweet FA,'' he replied when asked how he'd fare, explaining that he had drawn two current Australian representatives in his section.
"They're the next level,'' he reasoned.
"But I'm one of 16 players who have qualified, so can only do my best.''
He returned from the national police event at Coolangatta with the singles trophy, where he was unbeaten, again from a field of 16. Bowlers from all Australian states and territories, apart from Western Australia, were represented.
On his way to the final Cocksedge accounted for the reigning NSW police singles champion in the semi-final before lining up up against the defending Australian title holder and fellow New South Welshman, Garry Trick in the decider.
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Trick won the championship two years ago before the event went into hiatus due to the pandemic.
Cockedge described himself as a 'rank outsider' going into the match. However, he said he just had one of those days when everything turned to gold.
"I led from the start and eventually won 25-15,'' he said.
The final was played in front of a large gallery on the last day of the nine carnival, adding to the pressure. But Cocksedge responded accordingly.
He was also selected to play in the fours, where his team made the semi-finals.
Cocksedge, who plays with Taree Leagues, had made the semi-final of the zone champion of club singles champions, but had to forfeit the match to go to Coolangatta.
"There was a rain delay and that put us back and that caused the clash with Queensland. Unfortunately the zone wouldn't delay it again. That was disappointing,'' he said.
He's a regular on the greens, playing at least once a week at various clubs in the area while there's usually a zone or club championship event on weekends. He starts his defence of the Taree Leagues singles event on Saturday.
Cocksedge prefers singles and pairs, with a slight leaning to singles, where he explained there's no-one else to blame if things go wrong.
"You're out there by yourself,'' he said.
Cocksedge will now defend his police singles title at the next national championship to be held at Swan Hill in Victoria in 2023.
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