Thursday, November 16, 2023
Mackay and Whitsunday Life
Kevin Hewitt, better known on the bowling green as ‘Kev’, has played 97 test matches for Queensland.
He grew up on a dairy farm with his two brothers and parents, Harvey and Phillis Hewitt, who were well-known for delivering milk to local cafés around Mackay. When Kev’s parents unfortunately passed during his teen years, the farm was converted to cane.
Kev began to play lawn bowls in his free time at the age of twenty-one and found a love for the sport. He started competing at twenty-four, teaming up with his Uncle Alan Sommers around this time.
At age twenty-seven, he entered the Single State Championships. Kev’s first big win was the Easter Pairs and the Vickers Cup of Open Pairs in 1975.
Kevin was only the fourth player in seventy-two years to win the coveted State Singles title twice, both in 1976 and 1977, with his name going down as one of the greats.
Kev also won in the following two years, first the State Pairs in 1978, and the State Fours in 1979.
He teamed with his Uncle Alan once more in 1978, winning the State Pairs Champions. Subsequently qualifying to represent Queensland to play in the Australian Champion of Champions, where they went on to win the Pairs.
Kev won the State Fours Champions in 1979. The same year, he was invited to play in Newcastle to contest one of the first televised bowls tournaments, the NDBA-NBN TV All Stars Bowls Tournament with international players.
He also won the Whitsunday Singles Championships five times, the Whitsunday Pairs Championships five times and Whitsunday Fours Championships at least four times.
He was well-known as the most impressive of any player since World War II and was regarded for International Honours as an Australian representative, where he won numerous Mackay District Championships over many years.
In 1982, Kev won the Penfold Mazda Invitation Singles Bowls Classic Final with a score of 31-28 in Victoria, where it took nearly seven and a half hours in two games to see him win the Classic Singles Bowls Tournament.
The same year, Kev won another intrastate badge. Between 1972 to 1979, the Mackay District won the State District Sides Championships five times, with Kev and Pat Herlihy as the only Mackay players to have won five championships.
Kev got the chance to celebrate his eightieth birthday at Mackay Bowls Club last week with a group of his close family as well as bowling buddies from over the decades.
It was an emotional night of reminiscing for Kev, looking back on his monumental sporting achievements, as well as his personal accomplishments.
A true icon in Mackay's sporting realm and a revered figure within the lawn bowling community.
By Sinead Porter
Kevin Hewitt and his bowls buddies. (L-R) Bruce Bridger, Col Bovis, Barry Paskins, Jack Mundy, Lyn Tait, John Potter, Kevin Hewitt, Glen Francey, Trevor Dutton, Ted Gill, Col Tait and Pat Deagan
Lawn bowling legend, Kevin Hewitt in his early days with the Royal Queensland Bowls Association
Kev's extensive collection of winning badges