The perfect bowling score of 300 from 12 consecutive strikes is regarded as the Holy Grail for tenpin bowlers.

For all but a select few it remains an elusive goal, but last Thursday night Barry Boudette did it for the first time at Tenpin Tauranga.

The 22-year-old has been bowling for just two years, which centre manager Mark Stretton says makes it even more remarkable.

"We have bowlers from the New Zealand team that have been trying for 30-plus years," Stretton said. "Barry wears street shoes, bowls in a cap, which is never done. But Barry has come along with his own style which makes it very cool.


"To be good at this game you have to be consistent, got to be able to hit a target and do it over and over again. For him to get a 300 he had to do it 12 times in a row. He may have had the odd wobbly one along the way but the last one was as good as the first one." Stretton says he has never seen an inexperienced bowler do what Boudette did.

"I have been bowling 37 years and have never bowled a 300 game here. My son Josh is ranked number one youth bowler in the country and the highest he has bowled here is 299. His average is 220. So it is a pretty big feat and not an everyday occurrence."

Boudette admits he felt the pressure as he lined up his 12th strike to nail the 300.

"I was nervous and started to get the shakes. The last bowl I wasn't holding it too straight, it was just sitting there. I just tried to block out all the people around. I wanted to achieve it though when I first started. I set it as one of my goals, to get my name on one of those top-scoring lists when I started but I thought I would probably never get it."

He first tried the sport with his workmates who came along to celebrate a birthday.

"The first time I saw someone do a hook shot was by my oldest brother and from then on I just wanted to try it. You definitely get hooked on the sport, 100 per cent. I got better quite quickly thanks to tips from everyone else I bowled with."

After knocking over the big target so early on, Boudette wants to do it again and establish himself by doing well at tournaments.