Malta’s bowling community has lost one of its oldest players, as 86-year-old Roy Swift passed away late last week. His death was met with an outpouring of heartfelt messages from players and the public.
Swift was one of the first members of the Malta Tenpin Bowling Association and had a legendary status in the sport in Malta.
His fiery passion for tenpin bowling began in the sixties in a Gżira bowling centre. He went on to compete in international competitions and kept shooting pins until a few months before his passing.
Swift also played football in his youth with Sliema Wanderers.
His death was met with an outpouring of condolences from the sporting community as well as those who knew him. He was repeatedly described as being a true gentleman and inspiration to many.
“Such sad news. Roy may no longer be physical with us; however his spirit shall always be ever-present, amongst those who had the privilege to get to know such a true gentleman, ‘Ir-Roy’”, one commentator wrote under a post by Malta Tenpin Bowling Association.
“A true gentleman, true sportsman and an inspiration to many. He will be missed by all people who had the luck to be acquainted with him. Rest in Peace dear Roy and condolences to all his family,” another read.
Swift’s represented Malta in 1969 in the AMF World Cup in Tokyo and the 1991 global championships in Singapore.
Locally, he placed third in the National Championships in 1983, and took part in the first Seniors Championships in 2010, where he placed second. His last game was the Division Two championships, held last year.
Swift’s funeral will be held at the Ibragg Parish Church at 9am.
RIP Roy Swift