Croquet makes its first appearance at Iluka
CROQUET: Croquet is undergoing a sporting renaissance with the introduction of the popular "golf croquet” version of the sport bringing back the numbers in recent years.
Iluka's Col Hennessy has planned the next step in the sport's resurgence creating the seaside town's first ever croquet club.
With the support of the Iluka Bowling Club, Hennessy has opened a croquet lawn at the venue and after a rousing introductory day last week he is keen to see what the future holds for the sport.
Ilukan centenarian Bill Hammond, who attended the opening of the bowls club about 60 years ago, was there on the day to hit the first ball for the new club.
"It was good to have Bill there for the opening,” Hennessy said.
"We had a far better roll up than was expected. We got about 37 novices there who are excited to learn about the sport.”
Croquet has had good support from the local community with the Coutts Crossing Croquet Club operating successfully for a number of years.
Club members along with players from Lismore, Ballina and Casino were all on hand last week to act as mentors for the new players.
"I have always been a sporting man, I used to play a fair bit of golf, and now I saw this as a sport both my wife and I could enjoy together,” Hennessy said.
"It has had a bit of a growth in the sport in the last couple of years since the invention of golf croquet - which is sort of the T20 version of croquet.”
Hennessy has thrown the doors open to any willing participants, explaining that croquet was a sport that did not leave anyone out.
"Some of our members because of physical restraints they can no longer play golf or bowls but this is an option for them,” he said.
"It is not strength based but it is an underrated skilful sport.”
Iluka Croquet Club meet for competition on Fridays and Sundays from 9am.