Internationals raid the Australian Open

by admin

Eight Malaysian women qualified for the knockout stages of the Australian Open and Nor Fidrah Noh is one of their best chances to feature in the women’s singles final on June 23 The biggest bowls event in the world the Australian Open has attracted talent from not only every corner of Australia, but a cohort of 159 international players from around the world, each pining for a share in the $250,000 prize pool. 

The international raiders have raised the stakes of the competition, with the hard-to-miss presence of 85 competitors from New Zealand, 32 from Hong Kong, 21 from Malaysia, nine from the UK, six Canadians, three from South Africa, two from India and a representative from Kenya. 

Malaysian bowler Nur Fidrah Noh, also known as “Fid” is thrilled to be back on the sunny Gold Coast for her second Australian Open campaign, competing in the women’s singles, pairs and fours.

“It is a very good tournament because a lot of the big stars play here, and we can prepare our athletes for the Word Bowls in Christchurch,” Nur Fidrah Noh said.

“The Gold Coast is a very nice place and I think the greens are a similar speed to the ones at the World Bowls.”

Playing Lawn Bowls since she was only 14 years of age, the now 30-year-old is overjoyed to play in Australia alongside experienced lawn bowlers, with the potential to play against Australian Jackaroos including Australia’s most capped international bowler Karen Murphy and Australian Captain Lynsey Clarke, an opportunity she thought she would never get. 

“I love playing with the Australian stars and gaining a lot of experience through the event,” said Fidrah. 

Nur Fidrah Noh cites fellow Malaysian and Lawn Bowls legend, Siti Zalina Ahmad, as her inspiration for playing bowls.

Siti Zalina Ahmad is the only female bowler to have won two gold medals in the singles event, at both the 2002 Manchester and 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games. 

“She is my inspiration because of her Commonwealth Games achievements and I would like to reach that success one day,” said Fidrah. 

With over 4000 matches being played this year, Nur Fidrah Noh is already looking forward to coming back to the Australian Open in 2017 and seeing what new competitions will be brought to the green. 

“I am really sure that I am coming back, it’s a nice place and good for a lot of practise,” said the Malaysian champion. 

Nor Fidrah’s opening day of competition saw her win two sectional matches comprehensively; however a 7 shot loss in the last match of the day means she will likely join the 55 next best qualifiers with a margin of 26.