Bowler fact file: Carol Gianotti
Australia's own bowling legend, Carol Gianotti, won sixteen professional women's bowling titles before she was inducted into the United States Bowling Congress (USBC) Hall of Fame in 2011. Any woman, or even man, looking at joining a bowling league can learn a lot from her lightning-quick style and fierce competitiveness.
Her early career started in Perth in the 1980s when a bowling alley was constructed next door to where she lived. Carol and her brother, Mark, would hop over the fence to go bowling, even before the centre had opened.
The fire that started in her heart in that small, Perthian bowling alley launched her into a globe-trotting career of instant success. In 1988 she stunned the world by keeping up, if not surpassing, the world's best female bowlers to win herself a spot bowling for Australia in Seoul. "She was regarded as the also-ran to the U.S. contingent, but amazed everyone by leading the qualifying," wrote Jim Fitzgerald on the subject in Bowling Digest magazine.
Her first title win was even more impressive. Aged 21 years-old she dominated the competition at the major bowling tournament in Queens in 1989 - the Women's International Bowling Congress. This competition was no easy feat, as it pitted Carol against some of the world's greatest bowlers of the time and was barely over a year since her entrance into the professional sport.
Perhaps what is most impressive about Carol Gianotti, however, is her ability to fight through pain and injury to do what she loves. Prior to being inducted into the hall of fame, Carol had suffered through 10 knee surgeries, as well as numerous hand injuries. These weren't to phase her, as Carol repeatedly bounced back to go on and compete as if nothing were wrong.
If there were ever an Australian bowling idol to learn from and look up to, it's Carol Gianotti.