He could have been one of the oldest Australian representatives at any sport until the COVID pandemic hit which is an incredible feat for visually impaired bowler Max Glasse.
The 81-year-old claimed a gold medal for New South Wales in 2019 which booked his spot in the green and gold squad for the 2020 Trans Tasman Series in Australia.
Unfortunately, he never got to roll up for his country, but he is back representing NSW at the 2021 Australian Blind Bowlers Association titles at Port City Bowling Club this week.
"I've always played sport, I was a footballer to start with and as I got older I got into too much work and then I retired because my wife was dying with cancer," Glasse said.
"She passed away and I needed something to do after she died so I came down to Port City Bowling Club, watched them for a while and thought 'I'd like to have a go at that' so I did."
While he admits he may never have another opportunity to don his country's colours, it won't be through a lack of trying.
"All I can say is I'll try. If I don't get there, I don't get there and if I do, I do, and I'm quite happy with that," Glasse said.
"I won't give in, let's put it that way."
Being visually impaired means a strong bond has been formed with director Chris Thornton. Bowls has been a part of Glasse's life for the last 20 years.
"If it had not been for Chris I probably would have given bowls away altogether because the only vision I've got is peripheral vision," Glasse said.
He said the most challenging aspect of blind bowling is the ability to get the weight just right to land the bowl closest to the jack.
"You're not bowling the same distance all the time and the jack can be anywhere from 20 to 33 metres away so you've got to adjust," he said.
Thornton provides Glasse with instructions while on the green, although he admits he doesn't overcomplicate things.
"It's about adjusting your feet," Thornton said.
"It's a very technical sport and you've got to get those technical things right to be able to adjust and Max is very good at that, accepting it and taking the challenge on and doing it.
"He listens when he's not swearing at me."
The ABBA titles will be held in Port Macquarie all this week with other visually impaired bowlers from around the country including Western Australia, Victoria and Queensland making the trip to the Mid-North Coast.
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