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Saskatchewan Stories

‘My dream ever since I started lawn bowling’: Kos’ ambitions come to fruition in Birmingham 

August 11, 2022

Jordan Kos was just seven years old when she was introduced to the sport of lawn bowling. 

When Kos’ mother came across an advertisement from the Regina Lawn Bowling Club in her elementary school newspaper, she called the club to let them know they had mistakenly marketed a ‘senior sport’ to kids. The club’s youth coordinator responded, noting they were looking for Regina kids to try lawn bowling — Jordan and two of her cousins decided to sign up, and from there, she fell in love.

Kos quickly erased the narrative of lawn bowling as a sport for seniors — the now 20-year-old is fresh off representing Canada at the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, England.  

The rapid rise through the Canadian ranks for Kos began at 14 when she became the youngest player ever named to Team Canada’s development squad in 2014.  She went on to win gold medals at the 2015, 2016 and 2017 women’s U-18 national championships, as well as a silver medal at both the 2016 and 2017 women’s national championship.

It was that initial silver medal in 2016 that helped Kos realize that one day representing Canada at the Commonwealth Games, one of the most prestigious international tournaments in the sport, was a real possibility. Nearly six years later after that podium finish in 2016, Kos participated in a one-week long selection camp in Windsor, Ont. deciding her fate for Birmingham.  

 “I was speechless. I didn’t really know what to say,” said Kos. “It was such a shocking and much-awaited moment in my life. It was probably one of the best phone calls I’ve ever received.” 

For Kos, who was among the nine athletes with ties to Saskatchewan that suited up for Team Canada at the Games, the opportunity to represent her country in one of the world’s largest multi-sport events is an experience she’ll never forget. 

“Attending the Commonwealth Games as an athlete has been my dream ever since I started lawn bowling,” said Kos. 

“I had heard stories from other lawn bowlers who’ve gone to Commonwealth Games in the past and it’s just been something that I’ve always been inspired to do, so achieving my dream and making it come true has been the best feeling ever. I’ve just been really excited to be here.” 

Kos continues to train at the Regina Lawn Bowling Club. The club is where Kos met the likes of provincial lawn bowling legend and recipient of a Volunteer Dedication award during the 2020 Saskatchewan Sport Awards Jean Roney – who Kos mentions as someone she has looked up to throughout her career. 

“I’ve been able to witness many bowlers from my clubs travel to different destinations in the world compete internationally and being able to follow in their footsteps is another dream come true,” said Kos. 

With the Games presenting Kos the toughest competition in her career, she finished 17th in women’s lawn bowling singles and 15th in pairs alongside teammate Jackie Foster. 

“Although I played well in my games, it was definitely a ‘Welcome to the Big Leagues’ experience,” said Kos. “I would make a good shot, but my opponent would make an outstanding shot.” 

“I’m definitely realizing I’ve reached the next level in lawn bowling competition, but I’m just at the beginning. I need to keep improving my skills to match some of the women I’ve played so far.” 

With improvement in mind, Kos will continue to prepare for what lies ahead. Four years from now, the Commonwealth Games will make their return — this time in 2026 in Victoria, Australia. Kos hopes to have the opportunity to be selected to represent Canada once again.