Nelson lawn bowler Amy Mcilroy with her bronze medal and parents Raewyn and Tim Brenton in Glasgow.

Proud families watch our heroes


It’s been an exciting few days at the Commonwealth Games for Nelson’s top sporting stars – and equally so for their families.

On Monday morning lawn bowler Jo Edwards won Nelson’s first gold medal of the games with a thrilling win over the defending Commonwealth Games champion from England. Watching on was her “immensely proud” coach and husband Dave Edwards.

Jo later said she’d worked harder before these games than any other. “It’s a very, very proud moment. A hell of a lot of hard work has gone into this campaign. I’ve probably worked harder than for any other,” she told the New Zealand Herald.

Another thrilled Nelsonian was Tim Brenton as he watched his daughter Amy Mcilroy win bronze in the women’s fours, alongside fellow Nelsonian Val Smith.

Tim and his wife Raewyn were in the stands cheering and he told Nelson Weekly it was a great moment. “A dream come true really. The walk into the stadium at the opening was incredible she said. She truly proudly represents New Zealand.”

Amy’s husband Shannon Mcilroy is also competing in the lawn bowls. His triples team were knocked out in the quarter finals, but he still has the singles to come. “It’s wonderful to have one, let alone both of them [competing in Glasgow]. Shan is definitely very much part of the family – he lived with us for four or five years before they were married.”

There are 11 Nelson athletes at the games and so far the medal tally for them is three. One of each colour after Bryce Heem’s All Black sevens side lost the gold medal match against South Africa, earning them a silver medal.

Tim says the atmosphere and hospitality at the games is fantastic. “We’ve been so impressed by the hospitality of the helpful and friendly local Scottish residents.”

Amy, Val and Jo are all in action again this week, as is Blacksticks hockey player Anita Punt.