SPORTS AWARDS: Medal magic was crowning glory in Barbara’s career

Barbara Cameron receives the Sporting Performance of the Year award from sponsor Don Stirling, of Stirling Trophies. INBT06-226AC

Barbara Cameron receives the Sporting Performance of the Year award from sponsor Don Stirling, of Stirling Trophies. INBT06-226AC

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Unlike many of her fellow winners, the moment which earned Barbara Cameron the Sporting Performance award was shared by a worldwide audience.

The Ballymena bowler finally got her hands on a Commonwealth Games medal at the fifth time of asking as she and partner Mandy Cunningham secured a bronze in the ladies’ pairs event in Glasgow - in front of a live television audience.

In the final end of the bronze medal decider against Jersey, Barbara was playing her last bowl of the match with two shots against her and hopes of a medal fading fast.

Her crucial last wood came down the green at pace, glanced off an opposition bowl and lay nearest the jack and when the final Jersey delivery missed the target, Barbara’s medal dream had finally come to reality.

“It was a special day, one which I had waited on for a long time,” explained Barbara.

“I have been close before to a medal but this was a really big game.

“The bronze medal play-off is a game that nobody really likes to be involved in because the loser walks away with nothing.

“To win a Commonwealth medal was one of many dreams I had when I started out in bowls.

“It was getting near the end of my career and it didn’t look as though it was going to happen but thankfully it did.

“I announced my retirement from international bowls after the Games - I had been thinking about it anyway - but I will still play domestic matches and maybe help out with the coaching side as well,” added Barbara.

Also short-listed: Rachael Coulter (equestrianism); All Saints GAC under-14s (GAA).