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Barry’s ready for baton honour

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February 14, 2018

Popular Finley man Barry Wilson practising his baton relay walk for tomorrow's Yarrawonga leg.

Finley’s Barry Wilson will proudly take part in the Queen’s Baton Relay which makes its way through Yarrawonga tomorrow on the way to the Commonwealth Games’ host city, the Gold Coast.

The baton has been travelling through Commonwealth countries and Australian cities and towns.

Since the baton arrived in Australia in December it has been passed between thousands of nominated ‘‘local legends’’.

Mr Wilson, 69, was nominated by his son Robert for his dedication to sport in Finley and the support he provided to Robert when he was younger.

Barry said he was ‘‘stoked’’ to be part of the Queen’s Baton Relay.

‘‘It was highly unexpected. I supported Robert a lot when he was playing sports — volunteering for football, Little Athletics, cricket and basketball teams; he’s rapt I was accepted to take part.

‘‘I haven’t been doing practice runs, I’m going to walk the relay because the knees are a bit sore,’’ Mr Wilson joked.

Barry once coached junior football with the Finley Cats and these days he and his wife Pat volunteer at the Finley Golf Club every week.

‘‘I’m on the mower and help maintain the course with six other blokes,’’ he said.

Mr Wilson is a Finley Rotary Club member and received the Paul Harris Fellow award a few years ago, and he is also treasurer of the Finley Lake Trust.

He said it was important for younger people to volunteer to ensure the survival of the sporting clubs.

‘‘If you look at who’s volunteering at the moment, a lot are my age.

‘‘You get more out of it when you are fully involved.

‘‘You do what you can do and there’s always something for you to do.

‘‘I’ve made plenty of friends over the years in Finley and other towns.’’

Mr Wilson’s relay time is scheduled to take place at 12.58pm when he will receive the baton from Yarrawonga resident Michael Price.

At the end of his 200 metre walk, Mr Wilson will pass the baton to Cobram East local Damian Van de Berg.

Prior to arriving in Yarrawonga tomorrow, the baton will be passing through Wodonga and then on to Echuca in the afternoon.

The Commonwealth Games will be held on the Gold Coast from April 4 to April 15.

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