Margaret (nee Claughton) Rowling commenced playing croquet in the 1940’s at the Hastings Croquet club where she was likely to have received coaching from Rene Watkins one of New Zealand’s best players. Margaret played with a stylish upright stance holding the mallet with both hands at the top, usually employing a tight pivot ball break combined with accurate take offs to each pioneer.
She was at her very best in the late 1940’s runner up in the NZ Open in 1947 and 1948,
Doubles Champion with H.C. Ford in 1948/49 and Women’s Champion in 1948, 1949 and 1951. This run of success also included winning the C.A. (England) Women’s Championship in 1950, the North Island Open and Women’s titles in 1947. Her results ensured a place in the 1950/51 MacRobertson Test Series won by New Zealand for the first time. Margaret played six matches winning four. At this point she stopped playing and only appears to have returned briefly to competitive play following her marriage to Gordon Rowling and moving to Nelson. Margaret partnered Jean Jarden to victory in the NZ Doubles Championship in 1956. While in England during the 1956 MacRobertson series she played for New Zealand in a representative match against the South of England, due to illness in the N.Z. Test team. On returning to New Zealand Gordon and Margaret won the South Island Doubles in 1957. Although no longer playing tournaments Margaret coached at the Riwaka club. She was also a very accomplished oil painter specializing in still life.