Three-time silver medallist Carmel Mitchell plans to win back title

SHE might be known as ‘the runner-up’ around the Mt Xavier Bowling Club, but Carmel Mitchell has bigger and better plans for herself next bowls season.

Mitchell, who is a three-time silver medallist in Mt Xavier’s women’s club championship, says she wants to claim back the title she won in 2011.

Last year’s loss in the final to club stalwart Joy Adams was disappointing for Mitchell in more ways than one, because winning would have meant that she had equalled the feat of her brother Brian McKeegan, who defeated their other sibling Kevin in the 2013 men’s final.

“It was a real family affair for us last year,” Mitchell said.

“It’s a bit disappointing that we couldn’t take out both championships, but we were pretty close with three of us in the mix at the end.

“The win gave Joy her 20th club championship and, while I managed to break her cycle for one year, I’d like the title back.”

Mitchell is entering her 20th year with Mt Xavier after spending the first three years of her bowling career with Creswick, subsequently leaving in 1993 and having a year’s break before joining her current club in 1994.

She is a skipper in Mt Xavier’s midweek division one side, but also bowls in the men’s division three weekend pennant side.

Mt Xavier’s division one side has managed to avoid relegation in the 2013-14 midweek pennant season, but Mitchell would like to see more women join its ranks if it is to stay competitive over the next few years.

“We started really well this season and were on top for about four weeks, but we’ve been very unlucky with players not being unavailable or sick for pennant and we’ve been lucky to be able to use the men,” Mitchell said.

“It’s a fairly tight-knit club. I love it out here because it’s so relaxing and peaceful.”