Tuncurry bowler elevated to legend status

Rex Johnston.
Rex Johnston.

Tuncurry bowler Rex Johnston will be elevated to legend status at the sport’s hall of fame and awards night on October 26 at the Crowne Plaza Surfers Paradise.

He is the first addition to the exclusive club since Glynn Bosisto was confirmed at the inaugural staging of the Hall of Fame in 2011, and as such, he is just the nation’s second bowls “Legend”.

Johnston, 66, is one of the nation’s most decorated bowlers, and has enjoyed an illustrious international playing career from 1988 to 2004, where he pulled on the green and gold uniform on more than 300 occasions.

Johnston is the only Australian bowler to have represented his country at four consecutive Commonwealth Games, from 1990 to 2002, and secured a coveted gold medal as skip of the men’s pairs at the 1994 Victoria, British Columbia Games.

He coached Malta at the 2006 Commonwealth Games, became an Australian selector from 2006 until his appointment as the Australian national coach in 2009, until 2011.

On the state stage, Johnston accumulated 320 appearances for the NSW Blues, was awarded the male Bowler of the Year accolade on three occasions (1990, 1991 and 1997) and was bestowed Hall of Fame membership by Bowls New South Wales in 2009.

Johnston was presented with a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) for his contribution to bowls and charitable work in 2006.

Bowls Australia President Nigel Smith said Kerkow and Johnston are both thoroughly deserving of being labelled living legends.

“Rex is without question one of the greatest players to have ever played the sport, not just in this country, but worldwide,” Mr Smith said.