Margaret is still winning by – Graeme Goss


At 77 Years young, Margaret Henderson is still in the prime of her bowling career.

Starting bowls indoors in Inglewood, Margaret got hooked and on moving to Tirau in the Waikato in 1973 she took up the Outdoor Game, winning the Club Championships in her first year. Margaret was too busy with a young family to play much Centre Bowls back then but on moving to Paeroa in the Thames Valley Centre in 1981 she got more serious about her bowls.

She would drop the kids off to school and head down to the Bowling Club for another Tournament. She loved the competition and thrived on the challenge of trying to win every game, which she did quite often.



Margaret has won a total of 43 Centre Titles, including the Champion of Champion Singles 10 times and the Open Singles 6 times. She has won every type of event that can be played by women in Thames Valley, some of them many times over. She has been Player of the Year five times and in 2005/6 won five Centre titles in one year.

She won the Superbowl Singles in Waikato and has been runner-up twice in the Pairs in the Trust NZ Open in Auckland and was runner up in the NZ Open Fours.

She was first selected for the Thames Valley Womens Representative Team in 1987 and has played Singles or Pairs most years since then, travelling to Christchurch this year to play lead in the pairs and helping the Thames Valley ladies to qualify into the quarter finals.

Margaret was selected to play in the Bowls NZ Womens’ Development team in 1994 to travel to Vancouver prior to the Commonwealth Games in Victoria and then to Australia the following year.

Not to shirk her responsibilities as an administrator, Margaret has served as President and Match Convenor on the Thames Valley Executive and Board and is a qualified Umpire.

Margaret loves the team nature of bowls. She loves the challenge and is strongly motivated to try her best to win. While she is not playing so much singles these days (even though she won her Club Championship at Thames) she is grateful that even at her age she is still competitive whenever she plays at any level of the game.

With Margaret it’s bowls first, garden second and housework third. “Bowls keeps me motivated, keeps me going” she says.