MO MONKTON, 62 FROM YEOVIL, SOMERSET
I have always loved playing and watching sport. At school, I played hockey, tennis, basketball and netball. I did not enjoy athletics, much preferring the team sports. Out of school and after leaving school, I played mixed hockey, squash, basketball and ladies football. As a founder member of the local ladies football team, sport has given me an understanding of governance, team work, fund raising, coaching and a great opportunity to mix with a whole variety of people and skills.
I first got introduced to bowls as a result of watching my parents play and they challenged me to give it a go! I enjoyed it and started to drop into the local club and join in games. Then as I got older and it became more difficult to play the sports I played when I was younger, bowls was my saviour. I love the challenge, the team work, the people and keeping active.
As well as playing bowls, fifteen years ago, I decided to start a junior section at my club and encouraged a lot of different groups to try the sport. I loved seeing everyone, especially those less able start to believe they had found a sport in which they could enjoy and achieve. It was a win-win for me personally, as I was able to pass on some of my experience and also see players having fun and benefiting from the sessions. I truly believe bowls is one of the few "sports for all" and have been delighted in the last few years to use my coaching and people skills to help those with disabilities enjoy and participate.
I think bowls has a lot to offer women. Through bowls, women can keep active as well as be part of a great social network where women can meet up and become part of a supportive and friendly community. Women can feel comfortable walking into their club on their own, knowing there will always be a warm welcome and someone to sit with for a chat over drink or cup of tea. Bowls can be played and enjoyed whatever the standard or aspirations and gives women an opportunity to play socially or develop, train and compete at the very highest level.