Joy Adams had two passions. The first was her family, the second was sport.
Her husband Trevor Adams used to joke that it was hard to tell which one she loved more.
"She was a very loyal mother and wife and loved her family," he said.
"She loved her family more than she loved sport, but only just."
For over three decades, Adams almost never missed a match of pennant bowls. Her 37-year career saw her play 760 games and 87 club events.
She won 21 club titles before unexpectedly passing away from a virus following cancer treatment. She was 76.
"We both loved bowls," said Trevor, who was married to Adams for 55 years.
"We went to bowls together and came home together."
Born in Flemington, Adams moved to Ballarat as a child and grew up in Sebastopol.
As a lover of sport from an early age, she developed into a talented basketball and softball player before settling down with Trevor to start a family.
However, her competitive streak never went away.
After attending an open day at Mt Xavier Bowling Club at the behest of her husband, Adams discovered a new love.
"A couple of days later I took her for another role, and she said, 'I'd like to get real good at this'," Trevor recalled.
Trevor organised for her to take lessons from Victorian representative Ray Laycock. It didn't take long for her to get the hang of it. Pretty soon it was evident she had the makings of a top player.
"I couldn't keep her home after that," Trevor said with a laugh.
"Ray told her from the start how to stand and use her body. Good coaching makes good players."
She loved her family more than she loved sport, but only just."Trevor Adams
Adams went on to play 32 years at Mt Xavier, but her best years came later in her career.
After persevering through the unification of the men and women's competitions, Adams left Mt Xavier for Central Wendouree to stake her claim in division one. She excelled.
Playing as skipper, she helped lead the club to three premierships in a four-year span. More impressively, she was living proof that women could compete in a predominately male-dominated competition.
"She loved playing Saturdays and playing against men, she really did," Trevor said.
"Her Central Wendouree teammates said to me often that they were glad Joy joined the club because their skippers used to fear playing against her."
Off the green, Trevor said she loved people.
"She had terrific morals and was a very strong person," he said.