Healthy competition returns to bowls club
With the first half of the bowls season nearly over and many people beginning to emerge from lockdown, it seemed a fitting time to resume internal competition at Pulborough Bowls Club – albeit with new distancing and hygiene restrictions in place.
Pairs roll-ups have been taking place for several weeks, with a new rink booking system allowing a maximum of six players on the green at any one time, nicely spaced on alternate rinks, but nothing gets you back into a competitive frame of mind better than some healthy competition.
The singles handicap competition consisted of two groups, with each player taking on four others from their group over the space of three weeks.
One point could be scored for each end won and two points for the overall win, after the handicaps had been applied.
Twenty-two players entered and after some close games over 21 ends, the top four were confirmed as Paul Day and Jane Gray, who came second in their groups and would play off for third and fourth place, and Ray Knight and Roger Jupp, who topped groups A and B and would play for first and second.
Saturday, June 27 started wet, with dark clouds still threatening overhead when play started at 3pm.
Jane Gray started strongly, winning the first five ends without return, until a lapse in concentration allowed Paul his first end of three, heralding a close game of quality bowls and high-scoring ends, finally culminating in a 19/16 win to Jane and 15/8 win on points.
The fight for the top spot was equally as close, with Roger taking the lead on end five, until Ray closed the gap to level at 13 shots apiece on the 18th end, going on to win 17/13, with 13 ends won to Roger’s eight.
Presentations took place on the green, with Life Member Mick Ralph, congratulating the winners and handing over the cash prizes of £40,£30, £20 and £10 from 1st to fourth place - from a distance!
Elaine Lewis, one of our newest members, received a silver spoon for her efforts throughout the competition.
From July members will be able to enjoy the social side of the bowls club, with the bar and changing facilities reopening, but it won’t be until next season that visiting clubs will return in any numbers to play against Pulborough BC, so in-house competitions, roll-ups and club days will continue, with the Annual club competitions beginning in two weeks time, each being played over a weekend to decide the finalists, before finals weekend on Saturday Sunday, September 5 and 6.
Jane Gray with Ray Knight
Pulborough Bowls Club
Elaine Lewis with Ray Knight at Pulborough Bowls Club