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Potters Bowls Shop Discou

Good first night at Thetford

Pauline Barsby of Harling was delighted with the response to the Thetford project she is heading to launch short mat bowls in the historic Norfolk town. The first night drew in over two dozen interested people keen to try their hand at short mat bowls on the first of four nights that are planned this month. Pauline was assisted by half a dozen Harling members to help the would-be bowlers and NCSMBA President Brian Saunders was also on hand to talk about the Association and also help on the mats with tuition.

                                                                                                                                                           Posted 6-11-16

Defending champs win at Windows

Horsford BC, defending champions in the City of Norwich League, won 10-4 at Windows. Costessey ran out 14-0 winners at home to Framingham Earl but lost by the same margin at Deaf Sports. Jarrolds pulled off a 14-0 away win at Taverham while County Council won 10-4 at home to Deaf Sports.

                                                                                                                   Posted 6-11-16

Wymondham go down 10-0

Breckland League giants Wymondham suffered a shock 10-0 defeat at Carleton Rode that left the home side celebrating a result that underlines their credentials as title contenders. Gill Coleman, Trish Taylor & Russell Davidson opened with a superb 27-10 win against Chris Mann’s triple while Morris Taylor, Angela Bond & Neil Davidson made it a perfect first half beating Jon Sparham’s triple 20-12. Any hopes Wymondham had of a second half comeback were quickly shattered as Jill Davidson, Karl Newby & Terry Newby defeated Jack Pye’s triple 27-10 while Pam Rush, Keith Buck & Graham Mobbs made it a clean sweep beating John Jeffrey’s triple 17-10. Sprowston pulled off a 10-6 away win in the Norwich Cup as Bradwell’s triples found themselves outplayed on their own mats picking up just one point from eight. In the opening games Liz Mason, Margaret Juby & Les Chadwick produced a 10-3 win against Jackie Fortescue’s triple and John Graver, Maureen Munford & George Munford added a 9-6 win against Mike Harvey. Bradwell’s pairs reduced the points deficit to 5-3 in the second session as Anne Baker & John Sargent won 15-1 against Arthur Herring & Dennis Kemble while Roger Squires & Josh Baxter drew 7-7 with Linda Chadwick & Peter Johnson. But the next session of triples saw Bradwell’s hopes of a cup run take a hit as Les Chadwick’s triple won again, this time by 7-3 against Mike Harvey, and the game between George Munford & Jackie Fortescue ended in a 5-5 draw. With one session of pairs remaining Sprowston led 8-4 on points but with the shots level at 39-39 Bradwell just needed to win on both mats to snatch victory. Roger Squires & Josh Baxter certainly did their best as they romped to a tremendous 18-4 win against Herring & Kemble but Linda Chadwick & Peter Johnson took Sprowston over the finishing line by beating Baker & Sargent 6-4 to take their team into the quarter-finals.

In the Tens League defending champions Hempnall won 2-0 at Bob Carter. A super 25-8 pairs win for Jon Sparham & Chris Mann against Nigel Willard & Simon Willies and a 13-8 win for Lewis Cranston, Owen Cranston & Paul Baker against Melvin Woods’ triple earned the points despite the best efforts of Carter pair Jamie Forster & Gary Best and John Turner’s triple who won their games.

Connaught collected a maximum 4-0 home win against Hevingham. Alison Rush, Jack Marshall & Mike Minshull gave Connaught a solid interval lead by beating Joyce Vincent’s triple 23-8 although Rex Cox & David Sharpe kept the visitors in touch beating Di & Bill Adcock 16-10. The second half saw the home side take complete control as Carolina Lirocchi, Mike Smail & Joe Lirocchi beat Alan Bunn’s triple 23-4 and Elaine & Bob Oatway beat Eddie Hayward & Pat Williamson 15-8.     

Wreningham’s new look side scored one of the clubs biggest wins in recent years as they stormed to a 10-0 home win against Hingham in the South Norfolk League. The visitors had little to celebrate as Glenda Adcock’s triple won 24-2, Ty Musk’s triple won 21-13, Karl Bunn’s triple won 22-10 and Debbie Bunn’s triple won 21-6. In their next home match Wreningham made defending champions Hempnall work hard for a 6-4 away win. Lewis Cranston, Owen Cranston & Paul Baker’s 24-9 win helped secure the match points for Hempnall while Colin Stevenson, Bernie Cudden & Rob Cranston added a 17-9 win. The home sides points were earned by Ty Musk’s triple with a 12-7 win and Karl Bunn’s triple with a 16-11 win.  

                                                                                                                                           Posted 5-11-16

Thetford initiative launched by Pauline Barsby

After much groundwork by Pauline Barsby of Harling an initiative to launch short mat bowls in Thetford is set to take off this coming Friday with the first of four two hour sessions at the Charles Burrell Bowls Club. These sessions, which include free informal lessons, could pave the way to a short mat bowls club being formed in a major Norfolk town which has long lacked short mat bowling opportunities. Officers of the NCSMBA have set-up a Development Fund to assist in this project, with a sub-committee of Pauline Barsby, Jill Watson & Peter Walker to administer it, and in the long term this fund will be available to assist in the formation of new short mat bowls clubs in Norfolk. NCSMBA President Brian Saunders, Vice President Bob Oatway, Chairman Selwyn Goldsmith & Treasurer Jill Watson were involved in the discussions that have led to this initiative and it will be further discussed at the next NCSMBA Management Committee Meeting set for November 29th at Kirby Bedon.

Forncett outgunned

Last season Bob Carter made an early first round exit form the Norwich Cup but this season there was to be no repeat as they took maximum points at Forncett. The home side are not accustomed to facing a team of the quality of their visitors from Drayton and the result was never in doubt with Carter fielding a side containing two current, and four former, England internationals. Carter collected a maximum 16-0 points win scoring 98 shots against 39. Windows recovered from a poor first half to draw 12-12 at home to Woodbastwick in the first leg of their Bure Cup tie. Brenda Sizer, Pam Daynes & Diane Boswell kept Windows in the tie with wins of 8-2, 4-3 & 12-2 but with the away leg to come Windows will have a battle on their hands to reach the next round. Defending Tens League champions opened the new campaign with a 3-0 home win against Kirby Bedon. In the first half Hempnall’s Roger Parker & Neil Davidson faced Kirby pairing Teresa & Selwyn Goldsmith. Last season their game went down to the last end with the Hempnall pair winning by one shot but this year the result was reversed with the Goldsmiths winning 12-11. Hempnall won the other three games with Paul Baker’s 17-9 win against Phil Watson the biggest win of the night. City of Norwich League action saw Horsford Heroes player Chris Woodhouse skip his triple to a massive 36-0 win at home to Taverham as the Heroes collected a 12-2 win. Top of the table Thorpe Marriott suffered a heavy 14-0 defeat away to defending champions Horsford BC who also beat Sprowston 12-2. Other results saw Costessey beat County Council 11-3, Jarrolds beat Sprowston 12-2 and First Bus beat Windows 10-4. Coastal League leaders Woodbastwick Owls won 14-4 at Hemsby Harvestors while Martham went down 14-4 at Hemsby Beachcombers.

                                                                                                                                   Posted 29-10-16

Report amended – please note:

The above report has been amended due to another incorrect scorecard being returned following the Norwich Cup match between Forncett and Bob Carter where a substitution was not entered on the card. This is the second occasion in the last three weeks where a match card has been returned with either the score incorrect or details not filled in, the previous one was the Hevingham v Bob Carter match in the Tens League. On both occasions the match card was signed by both captains as correct. Could captains of both sides please check that the match card has been correctly filled in before signing it and returning it to avoid incorrect information appearing on this web site and in the Eastern Daily Press and Norwich Evening News.

                                                  Report amended 31-10-16

Does Marriott’s win over champs signal change in Bure?

Looking through the early season Bure League results, just sent to me by Bure fixtures secretary Lianne Mills, makes me wonder if Halvergate’s reign as champions could be under threat this season. Halvergate comfortably retained their title last season but already seem to have struggled to field a team from what I have heard. Thorpe Marriott has started the season in great style defeating Halvergate 8-2 and then winning 6-4 at Kirby Bedon where they normally struggle for a result. Add to that a 6-4 home win against Horsford BC and Thorpe Marriott are the early season pacesetters. Halvergate rarely slip up on their own mats though as Heroes found to their cost when they were beaten there by 8-2. Windows will be pleased to be in an unaccustomed second place due to home wins against both Heroes & Horsford BC and their only defeat was by a narrow 6-4 margin at Heroes. Kirby Bedon, who have finished in third place for the last three years, could struggle to repeat that this season judging by their early results. As well as losing at home to Marriott they also suffered a 6-4 home defeat against Hevingham and Kirby’s eight year long unbeaten home record during their glory years is now a distant memory. Woodbastwick’s only outing so far saw them win 8-2 against Heroes. In recent years East Tuddenham have had to be content with the runners-up spot behind Halvergate but this year should see them mount a serious title challenge. No result cards have arrived from them so far but if their side is strengthened by the addition of either Gary Best or Simon Willies, or both, they will take some stopping.   

                                                                                                                                                  Posted 27-10-16

Halvergate ease past Hingham

Halvergate made light work of progressing into the first round of the Challenge Cup after beating Hingham 30-10 on aggregate. The first leg at Halvergate saw a clean sweep in the first session with David Lamb beating Keith Thomas 16-5 while Robbie Lamb beat Will Townsend 11-8. The fours completed a 10-0 half time whitewash as Kevin Watson, Mike Tate, Ray Lamb and Steven Lamb beat Wendy Tweed, Janet Higgs, John Hunter and John Higgs 14-2 and Ryan Fox, Jackie Fortescue, Roy Walker and Keith Cooke beat Margaret Hunter, Terry Curry-smith, Graham Tweed and Eileen Herbert 8-7. Hingham collected two wins in the second half courtesy of an 11-9 win for Keith Thomas over Robbie Lamb while John Higgs' four beat Keith Cooke's block 10-8 leaving them to overturn a 16-4 deficit going into the second leg. Any hopes of a Hingham fightback were soon dashed in the second leg at Hingham as Halvergate's Robbie Lamb beat Keith Tomas 11-6 and David Lamb beat Will Townsend 12-5. Another first session whitewash was again had by Halvergate as Donna Lamb, David Knights, Roy Walker and Keith Cooke beat Wendy Tweed, Pat Roache, John Hunter and Gordon Wilcox 10-8 while Mike Tate, Ray Lamb, Morgan Warnes and Steven Lamb beat Margaret Hunter, Graham Tweed, Terry Curry-smith and Eileen Herbert 11-5 which gave Halvergate an unassailable 26-4 lead with two sessions to spare which Hingham did win by 6-4. 

Great weekend for Norfolk I.C.C teams

Surrey Premier v Norfolk Premier

On Saturday Norfolk Premier took on the long trip to Guildford to take on Surrey Premier and a fighting performance saw them emerge with a 22-18 away win although their long unbeaten record in the I.C.C came under extreme threat. Norfolk made a solid start winning the first session 6-2 with Gary Best & Chris Mann both winning in the singles while Morgan Warnes & Jack Pye added a 15-10 pairs win. It was very nearly a clean sweep as Simon Warnes & Jon Sparham recovered from a 10-2 deficit to lead their game 14-12 with two ends remaining. The Surrey pair though levelled the game at 14-14 and scored a single on the last end to win by one shot. Surrey narrowed Norfolk’s lead to 9-7 in the second session with Jack Marshall, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods scoring Norfolk’s only win by 10-9. It was young Jack Marshall’s debut in the Premier team, due to Nigel Willard’s illness, and the Connaught bowler continued to show great promise and is a name to watch out for in the future. Laura Hawksworth, Rob Cranston, Jamie Forster & David Lamb drew their fours game 7-7. With the singles & pairs on next Norfolk were hoping to increase their lead but instead it proved to be a great session for Surrey. Both pairs games were lost with Surrey’s L Gillam & T Alexander in excellent form beating Warnes & Pye 17-9 and Simon Warnes & Jon Sparham again losing by just one shot. Sparham’s final wood of the game looked a winner all the way but the Surrey bowl he attacked rolled forward just enough to hold shot position as the jack entered the ditch. Chris Mann had a poor start against R Edwards and trailed 9-1 after seven ends with the Surrey bowler winning 17-11. Norfolk’s only win of the session was  due to a sensational performance by new boy Gary Best who stormed his way to a 24-8 to secure the singles bonus points. This left Surrey in the lead going into the final session but Norfolk dug deep to clinch victory. Kerry Greenacre, Debbie Sparham & Keith Cooke took control early on in their game and secured a 15-7 win. Lewis Cranston, Phil Watson, Bob Oatway & Simon Willies beat Derek Johns’ rink 13-3 with Willies having his best game yet since transferring to Norfolk from the West Mids. Melvin Woods’ triple looked on course for their second win of the day but dropped three shots on the last end to lose 14-12 but David Lamb’s rink held on for a 9-9 draw in their game and Norfolk could relax knowing they were over the finishing line with bonus points earned in the singles, triples & fours. Gary Best, Jack Marshall & Simon Willies were presented with plaques by NCSMBA Vice-President Bob Oatway to mark their third match for Norfolk

Suffolk v Norfolk “A”

Norfolk took a strong side to Stowmarket looking for revenge for their home Inter-County Championship defeat by Suffolk earlier in the season and got it with interest. Manager Selwyn Goldsmith called for a positive showing from his players before the game and the players responded by inflicting a heavy 29-11 home defeat on their local rivals. Neil Davidson was a surprise late addition to the side and opened his account with a 19-7 win against David Baker but Michael Rice hit back for Suffolk beating Mike Boswell 18-13. The pairs was also shared with Lesley Crowe & George Clarke winning 13-11 for Norfolk while Colin Coman & Sheila Bragg went down 15-9. Norfolk moved into a 10-6 halftime lead with Jenny Walker, Elaine Oatway, Melvyn Barker & Peter Walker winning 12-5, Jean Woods, Graham Mobbs, Karl Newby & Terry Newby winning 15-7 & Billie Barker, Graham Tweed & John Jarvis winning 10-9. Suffolk’s only win in this session was a 14-4 result for J Paddy’s triple against Trevor Pinchen. After the break Neil Davidson won his second game beating Michael Rice 18-13 while Mike Boswell drew 13-13 against David Baker. With the bonus points earned Norfolk’s singles players had seven out of the ten points on offer in the bag. In the pairs Lesley Crowe & George Clarke won their second game of the match by 12-10 but the other pairs game went Suffolk’s way with the home side also collecting the two bonus points. The final session put the icing on the cake for Norfolk though as they won right across the board. In the triples a nine shot deficit was wiped away as Billie Barker, Graham Tweed & John Jarvis raced to a 17-4 win and Janet Pinchen, David Blundell & Trevor Pinchen won 15-9 meaning Norfolk had earned eight out of ten triples points. The fours started their games already fifteen shots to the good but made it a perfect ten points scored as Terry Newby’s rink, with Jean Woods putting on an accomplished show at lead, won 17-8 and Peter Walker’s rink held their nerve to score a single on the last end to win 10-9. Before the match David Blundell was presented with a plaque by NCSMBA Vice-President Bob Oatway to mark his third match for Norfolk.

                                                                                                                                              Posted 23-10-16  

David Blundell

Vice-President Bob Oatway with Jack Marshall, Simon Willies & Gary Best

Connaught “A” early pacesetters

Connaught “A” are the early pacesetters in the Breckland League after a 9-1 home win against Harling Unicorns and a solid 8-2 away win at Hingham. Banham took all ten points in their home game against Shropham. Forncett won 8-2 at Connaught “B” but lost 8-2 at Harling Unicorns. The Coastal League opened their season without both Bradwell Beacons & South Walsham who have left the league. Defending champions Woodbastwick Owls reeled off three quick wins to head the table. The Owls won 15-3 at Martham and at their own venue beat Hemsby Harvestors 15-3 and Woodbastwick Eagles 12-6. The Eagles won their other two games, 10-8 at Martham and 14-4 at Bradwell Robins. In the City of Norwich League Thorpe Marriott have opened with four straight wins to lead the table ahead of Jarrolds who have won their first three matches. One point behind Jarrolds are Framingham Earl who are also just one point ahead of Taverham. South Norfolk League action saw Hempnall beat Diss 10-0 with Colin Stevenson, Roger Parker & Neil Davidson winning 18-2. Connaught came out of a hard match at Wreningham as 6-4 winners with Mike Minshull’s triple getting them over the finishing line first with a 21-7 win.    

                                                                                                                                                              Posted 18-10-16

Best dethrones Davidson to claim second county title of season

Bob Carter's Gary Best was in sparkling form in the final of the Norfolk Singles Championship final as he beat Wymondham's Chris Mann 14-3 in a one sided final. Both players are regular features in this seasons Norfolk Premier team in the ICC were battling against each other this time but Best was far too good on the day. On the first end Mann was in a good position and looked to be holding three shots till Best attacked and fortuitously claimed a single. From there he dictated play leading 6-0 after three ends. Mann then changed tactics trying to attack the jack which got him a single on end four. End five however was a disaster for Mann as all four of his attacking woods missed the target giving Best four easy shots to open up a 10-1 lead. Mann was still pursuing with the attacking mentality but Best was making it hard with shared singles over the next two ends still giving him a nine shot lead at 11-2 with just three ends remaining. A single for Mann was not enough enough on the eighth end as Best was now in cruise control and had hardly put a bowl wrong as he picked up three shots on the ninth end which clinched him the match. In the third fourth play off four time winner Neil Davidson scored a brace on the last end to beat Jason Woods 14-13. The semi finals saw Chris Mann ditch the jack on the last end to claim an 8-7 win while Gary Best denied Neil Davidson a fifth title beating him 11-2. Quarter final results were Jon Sparham 7 Neil Davidson 11, Chris Mann 16 Jack Pye 3, Owen Cranston 6 Gary Best 12, Bob Oatway 1 Jason Woods 13.

Chris Mann and Gary Best

Norfolk win opening Eastern England League match

Defending Eastern England Over 60s League champions Norfolk began the new campaign with a 19-15 away win against Cambs at March IBC. A competitive match saw Norfolk put under intense pressure by the home side but Norfolk emerged victorious. Cambs collected the two bonus points mainly due to a massive 22-4 win by Gerry Russell’s triple in the second session, the only big score-line of the day.  Three Norfolk triples recorded two wins apiece. Jenny Walker, Sue Fox & Mike Boswell won 13-10 & 11-7, Billie Barker, Mel Barker & Peter Fox won 16-10 & 10-9 and Margaret Reynolds, Malcolm Reynolds & Colin Coman won 17-10 & 10-7. The match was the first played under the new format of two games of twelve ends for each triple over four sessions on four mats. There is an option of playing these matches over two sessions on eight mats if both managers agree.                                           

Match action at March IBC and Sheila Ward at the control table

SNL champs open new campaign with a win

South Norfolk League champions Hempnall began their new campaign with a high scoring 6-4 win at Connaught. Kerry Greenacre, Bernie Cudden & Neil Davidson inflicted a heavy 28-2 defeat on Mike Parsons’ triple but Sheila Bragg’s triple kept the home side in the match beating Jack Pye 17-14. The second half saw Connaught suffer a further blow as Owen Secker went down 23-4 against Roger Parker. Connaught’s Joe Lirocci then responded by beating Paul Baker 12-11 to restrict the visitors to just a 6-4 away win despite the shots total finishing 76-35 in favour of Hempnall. 

Connaught “B” knockout First Bus

First Bus are out of the Norwich Cup after going down 10-2 at Connaught “B” with the match conceded with one session remaining. M Eades, M Southgate & S Barclay won both their games by 12-3 & 9-4 and P Hambling, J Squire & P King completed a clean sweep in the triples with wins of 7-5 & 8-5. J Winup & D Flatt added an 8-5 pairs win while B Cox & B Oatway scored the visitors only win of the night with a 12-3 pairs win in the first half.

Bure champions off to a winning start

Defending Bure League champions Halvergate opened with an 8-2 home win against Horsford Heroes with Keith Cooke’s triple romping to a 28-7 win while Steven Lamb won 17-11 and David Lamb won 18-4. Jane James scored the visitors only win beating Robbie Lamb 14-10.

Carter win at Hevingham despite scorecard error

Tens League giants Bob Carter won 4-0 at Hevingham with Jean Woods, Rob Howlett & John Turner leading the way with a 19-6 win. Sue Hunt, Nigel Willard & Melly Woods won 15-10 while Jason Woods & Simon Willies won 19-11 and Steve Bridge & Jamie Forster won 15-10. Both team’s captains then signed off the scorecard incorrectly recording a 4-0 points win for Hevingham!


                                                                                                                                                                                       Posted 14-10-16

Both Norfolk teams beat Essex in I.C.C action

In the Inter-County Championships defending champions Norfolk Premier were at home to Essex Premier, the side they defeated in last season’s final. The Essex side were eager for revenge but once again Norfolk came out on top beating their rivals 25-15 on points, 198-178 on shots. Morgan Warnes made a return to county action as lead for Jack Pye in the pairs and the two young bowlers produced impressive wins of 19-8 & 18-13. Chris Mann was again in cracking form in the singles with a win and a draw while Gary Best added a 16-9 win against the talented Mitchell Young. The all Carter triple of Nigel Willard, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods were in great form with wins of 18-8 & 16-6 while a new look rink of Laura Hawksworth, Rob Cranston, Jamie Forster & David Lamb won by 13-6 & 11-10. Kerry Greenacre, Debbie Sparham & Keith Cooke added a 10-9 win in the triples on another good day for Norfolk Premier. Norfolk “A” produced their best win against Essex “A” for quite some time as they stormed to a 31-9 win on points, 237-149 on shots. Norfolk’s pairs, Jack Marshall & Sheila Bragg and Lesley Crowe & George Clarke, won all their games. Joan Costello, Graham Tweed & John Jarvis won their opening game 18-8, and with Teresa Goldsmith subbing for Graham Tweed, they won their second game 16-4. Janet Pinchen, David Blundell & Trevor Pinchen were also unbeaten with a win and a draw while Hayley Stratton, Ray Lamb, Graham Mobbs & Steven Lamb won their games by 10-6 & 17-12. Sheila Redwood, Graham Tweed, Karl Newby & Terry Newby collected a 23-2 win in the rinks. Despite Essex winning three of the four singles games a 19-8 win for Mike Boswell of Windows was worth four points as it also collected the bonus points for this discipline.  

                                                                                                                                          Posted 9-10-16

Best claims maiden county title

Gary Best picked up his first Norfolk title at only his second attempt with Kerry Greenacre, Neil Davidson and Keith Cooke beating three of last years champions Debbie Sparham, Chris Mann and Jon Sparham with Simon Warnes 8-3 in a high quality final. The first end saw Davidson give his four the advantage as they went 3-0 up. Mann's wood was enough to see his four pick up a single to trail 3-1. On the third end Davidson and Mann tussle again but Davidson comes out on top by ditching the jack, Best, with last wood tries to play Greenacre's toucher but misses and ends up playing Sparham's toucher into the ditch causing a dead end. Yet again Davidson and Mann exchanged chalkers but again Davidson ditched the jack on end four. Warnes has two attempts at chalkers to play in the ditch but both end up exactly in the same position in the ditch with Davidson still holding shot while Best improves it to make a brace going 5-1 up. It's the same story on end end five with Mann and Davidson both having chalkers again with the jack exposed to the edge of the mat Cookie ditches it at the second attempt to his four go 7-1 up. End six saw the jack killed by Mann and then Davidson on the third replayed end saw Warnes ditching the jack with Mann's wood aslo to see the score reduced to 7-3. On the last end Mann plays two good bowls with one ditched and one on the line to give his four the advantage with skips to bowl. With Sparham's last wood he tries to split both Greenacre's woods and although hitting the target the bowl plants one of their woods out to see it holding shot for an 8-3 win to Best. In the third fourth play off Nigel Willard, David Lamb, John Turner and Melly Woods beat Steve Bridge, Jason Woods, Jamie Forster and Simon Willies 9-4. 

Gary Best, Kerry Greenacre, Keith Cooke and Neil Davidson

Simon Warnes, Chris Mann, Debbie Sparham and Jon Sparham

Norfolk Over 60s beat Barley’s Select in Friendly

After a slow start Norfolk Over 60s came through to record a heavy win against a Derek Barley Select team from Carlton Colville in Suffolk. The visitors enjoyed a good first session winning on three of the four mats for a 6-2 points lead but Norfolk hit back with four straight wins in the next session to lead 10-6. Barley’s team responded with a 5-3 points win in the third session to reduce the deficit to 13-11 at the halfway stage. After a break for lunch Norfolk dominated proceedings winning eleven of the remaining twelve games to win the match comfortably by 35-11 on points and 258-172 on shots.

                                                                                                                                                             Posted 1-10-16

                                       All prepared for the arrival of Derek Barley's Select at Hingham

                Ray Potter shares a joke with Norfolk bowler Graham Tweed as he sells the raffle tickets

Norfolk Over 60s Organiser Teresa Goldsmith

Kerry Greenacre on kitchen duties


Cranston & Sons lift Potters Cup at first attempt

The 16th Annual Potters Cup Weekend at Potters Resort saw Rob Cranston, with his sons Lewis & Owen at lead and two respectively, win the Potters Cup at their first attempt in the International Arena at Hopton-on-Sea. After an impressive run of victories the County Council triple met Haddiscoe’s Kerry Greenacre and Diane & Mike Boswell of Windows in the final and made a tremendous start. Excellent bowls by the two Cranston boys on the first end forced Mike Boswell to attack with both of his woods but a superb take out shot by Rob Cranston brought the first end to a close with four shots to the County Council triple. With the Cranstons threatening to extend their lead on the next end Mike Boswell produced a great last bowl to save the day and produce a no scoring end. Two more superb bowls by Lewis Cranston drew applause from spectators on the third end but Boswell’s triple hit back to take two shots and reduce the deficit to 4-2. On the fourth end Kerry Greenacre played her best two bowls of the final so far sitting them both behind the jack and Diane Boswell drew in a third. A brilliant backhand draw by Owen Cranston then put Boswell’s triple back under pressure as the Cranston’s moved 5-2 up. The Cranstons continued to impress on the next end and looked set to move further ahead until Mike Boswell played an excellent bowl to win the end and keep his triple in the game. The sixth end was replayed after Owen Cranston took the jack off the side but the replayed end saw Kerry Greenacre & Diane Boswell again putting the Cranstons in trouble and Boswell’s triple leveled the game at 5-5. The decisive break in the final came on the seventh end. Diane Boswell was unlucky not to get a better result as she attempted to move a Lewis Cranston wood that was sitting directly behind the jack. Younger brother Owen then drew in his two woods to leave Mike Boswell in trouble once again. Boswell attacked with weight with his last bowl but failed to stop Rob Cranston’s triple collecting four shorts and a 9-5 lead. Boswell’s triple were desperate for shots on the penultimate end and Kerry Greenacre won the battle of the leads to hold two shots. Diane Boswell then drew in a third bowl as Owen Cranston lost both his woods. But the situation changed dramatically with Diane Boswell’s next bowl as an unfortunate heavy connection sent the jack back leaving the Cranstons holding shot with their only bowl on the mat. Mike Boswell retrieved the situation by knocking one of his triples touchers back before Rob Cranston ultimately earned his triple shot bowl and a 10-5 lead to take into the last end. Kerry Greenacre held shot after the leads had played on the last end but a superb draw by Owen Cranston took shot and brought them nearer to a Potters Cup triumph before Rob Cranston drew his first bowl into the head. Rob Cranston’s final wood of the final actually moved the jack giving Boswell’s triple shot but left the head in such a way as to make it impossible for Mike Boswell to improve things and the Cranston father and sons triple could begin to celebrate a glorious Potters Cup win. In the semi-finals the Cranston triple played defending champion Keith Cooke of Halvergate who this year was playing with Paula Moore at lead and Sue Fox at number two. Paula Moore, a newcomer to the sport, showed great promise throughout the event and will be delighted to have reached this stage while Sue Fox of Horsford Heroes was consistent as always. Cooke’s triple dropped three shots on the opening end and trailed by 8-2 after four ends. They recovered well to level the game at 8-8 with just one end left where the Cranstons took one shot to win 9-8. In the other semi-final Mike Boswell’s triple faced Jenny Walker of Thorpe Marriott, Shirley George of Haddiscoe and John Jarvis of Thorpe Marriott. Jarvis took a single on the first end but Boswell’s triple moved 5-1 up after four ends. A great fightback saw Jarvis level at 5-5 after five ends but after that Boswell took control to win 11-6.   

Watson’s last wood wins Potters Shield Final

The final of the Potters Shield saw a Norfolk v Suffolk battle as East Tuddenham’s Geraldine Potter and Kirby Bedon’s Gerald Chilvers & Phil Watson faced Carlton Colville’s Ann Rawlings, Laurie Rawlings & Margaret Barley. A tight low scoring game saw neither triple giving much away but Watson’s triple had edged into a 5-3 lead with two ends remaining. Margaret Barley leveled the game by taking two shots on the penultimate end setting up an exciting final end. Barley’s triple looked likely to win the Shield but the last wood played by Phil Watson took shot and won the day. In the semi-finals Phil Watson’s triple played East Harling’s Jill Hayman, Pauline Barsby & Steve Easter. After conceding one shot on the opening end Watson’s triple took a 3-1 lead on the second end and led throughout recording an 8-3 win despite the Harling triple competing well throughout the match. In the other semi-final Margaret Barley’s Suffolk triple won by a convincing 17-3 margin against Robert Taylor, Michael Randell & Alan High of Essex. Popular Potters legend Mark Brewer conducted the Presentation Ceremony with Event Organiser Teresa Goldsmith.  

John Jarvis & Mike Boswell in the money

The popular Potters Cash Pairs event saw John Jarvis of Thorpe Marriott & Mike Boswell of Windows collect first prize after a last session drama saw two of the three pairs left on maximum points lose their games. Going into the last session Jarvis & Boswell were on maximum points with a shot difference of +25. The other two pairs on maximum points were Wymondham’s Debbie & Jon Sparham with +20 and Costessey’s Shirley & Joe Brown with +19. Jarvis & Boswell won their last game by just 6-4 but did not have to worry about shots as the Sparhams lost 7-3 against Kerry Greenacre & Keith Cooke while the Browns went down by 9-5 against Deaf Sport's Laura Hawksworth & Wymondham’s Chris Mann. These results saw Suffolk’s Ann & Laurie Rawlings grab second spot with nine points while Laura Hawksworth & Chris Mann finished third with the best shot difference of the seven pairs who all finished on eight points. Presentations were made by Potters Resort entertainer James Hearn & Event Organiser Teresa Goldsmith. On Sunday evening bowlers enjoyed a five course meal with wine in the Garden Restaurant before enjoying a fabulous performance by Jane McDonald of “Cruise”, “Loose Women” & “Cats” fame in the Atlas Theatre.  

Potters announce date of 2017 Potters Cup

Potters Resort has announced that the 2017 Potters Cup Weekend will take place from Friday 29th September to Monday 2nd October with the usual two or three night options available. Bookings are already being taken and entry details can be obtained by contacting Teresa Goldsmith on 01603-403628 or on the Norfolk CSMBA website by clicking on Potters Cup



Potters Cup Winners Lewis, Rob & Owen Cranston with Potter's Mark Brewer

Potters Shield Winners Gerald Chilvers, Geraldine Potter & Phil Watson

Potters Cash Pairs Winners John Jarvis & Mike Boswell with Potter's James Hearn

Potters Cash Pairs runners-up Lawrie & Ann Rawlings

Potters Cash Pairs third place Chris Mann & Laura Hawksworth

Peter Warnes Rest in Peace

The Norfolk County Short Mat Bowls Association is saddened to learn of the death of Peter Warnes of Horsford Bowls Club. Peter played for Horsford BC for the last six years and everyone who knew him will be aware of his popularity in the sport. He played in the Horsford BC team that won the City of Norwich League championship last season and was player of the season. He will be greatly missed by both his own team mates and opposing players. Our thoughts of with his family and close friends at this sad time.  

                                                                                                          Posted 26-9-16

Pye bid fails in Irish Open as Alan Paul wins title

Young Wymondham & Norfolk star Jack Pye enjoyed a great run in the SMPT Irish Open in Belfast before going down by just one shot against Ireland’s PJ McCrossan in the Last 16 stage. Jack Pye was drawn in Group 16 and won the group in style with a 12-6 win against Reggie Bolton, a 16-4 win against Steve Burrows followed by a 7-7 draw against Keith Tinney in his third game. It was then back to winning ways with a vengeance as he blew away Lee Devenney 19-0 and then beat Gerard Moen 10-6 in his last group game. In the knock out stages he began by beating Thomas McAleavey 10-8 followed by a heavy 14-3 win against Paul Duff. The followed a close game against McCrossan which Pye lost by 10-9. Ireland’s Alan Paul (pictured below) went on to win the SMPT Irish Open title beating Gerry McCabe in the final with Pauline Beattie finishing third. Jackie Erskine lifted the Plate title beating Nathan Haire 8-6 in the final with Danny Winmill winning the Shield competition. Jack Pye is now seventh in the SMPT Rankings. Ireland’s Mark Beattie is number one with Belgium’s Dimitri Payne second. Sweden’s Joel Hager & Dick Almen are ranked third and fourth respectively. The next SMPT event will be the Norwegian Open held at Skien Fritidspark on the 29th & 30th October.  

Norfolk Premier win opening I.C.C match

Defending Inter-County Champions Norfolk Premier opened their season with a home match against Surrey Premier with an unfamiliar line-up. Due to various reasons several changes had to be made to the team and they failed to find their best form but still emerged with a 23-17 victory against a lively Surrey team. Norfolk took maximum points in the singles. Wymondham’s Chris Mann won two close games by 12-11 & 15-12 while former Kent star Gary Best, making his I.C.C debut for Norfolk, won his games by 19-10 & 10-9. Robin Amos & Jon Sparham won their pairs games by 17-11 & 15-12 but Surrey picked up the bonus points in the pairs by winning the other two games. Bob Carter’s triple of Jamie Forster, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods were buzzing and won their games 16-7 & 11-7. Kerry Greenacre, Debs Sparham & Keith Cooke dropped two shots on the final end of their opening game and had to settle for an 11-11 draw and were disappointed to lose their second game 12-8 after leading 8-4 with three ends remaining. Surrey got the better of the fours games with a 15-12 win for Laura Hawksworth, Lewis Cranston, Rob Cranston & Simon Willies gaining their only points. Former West Mids ace Willies will remember his I.C.C debut for Norfolk storming back from 10-2 down to win that game when all seemed lost.  

Norfolk “A” lose to Suffolk

Norfolk “A” lost their opening match by just 21-19 to Suffolk at Hingham. “A” Team captain Mike Boswell led the way winning his singles games by 11-9 & 14-13. Mike trailed 8-1 in his first game before staging a great comeback. Robbie Lamb of Halvergate was Norfolk’s other singles player, he lost his opening game by just one shot and drew his second game 14-14. The only pairs win for Norfolk was a 14-8 result for Jack Marshall & Sheila Bragg in their second game but young Jack Marshall of Connaught played well on his debut. Another player making her debut was Billie Barker who led for Graham Tweed & John Jarvis. They had a brilliant day winning by 16-8 & 19-6. In the fours Sheila Redwood, Colin Coman, Karl Newby & Terry Newby were also impressive winning both their games by 10-6. Other bowlers making their Norfolk debuts were Wortwell’s David Blundell & Halvergate’s Donna Lamb.

                                                                                          Posted 18-9-16

                                       Dream debut for Gary Best for Norfolk Premier in the I.C.C

Subs gamble pays off in Summer Cup Final

Bob Carter lifted the Summer Cup after half time substitutions paid off against Halvergate in the final played at St Faiths. A great first half left both teams tied 4-4 on points and 25-25 on shots. On mat one Carter’s Jason Woods, Jamie Forster & Simon Willies had a great start when Forster ditched the jack on the first end and Willies consolidated the position to take three shots and they then took another two shots on the second end. Halvergate got on the scoreboard on the next end after a good first bowl by skip Keith Cooke left his triple holding three shots. Willies cut it down to two with his last wood but Cooke drew in his final bowl for three shots. The fourth end saw Jason Woods draw in two lovely bowls but one was taken out by a forcing shot by Steven Lamb. Forster then drew in for two while Willies put in a good defending bowl in front of the head. Halvergate skip Keith Cooke was again forced on the attack in an attempt to retrieve the situation but without success and the end finished with Simon Willies drawing in his last wood for a count of four and a 9-3 lead. The pattern continued into the fifth end where Cooke had to use weight again but Carter emerged with another shot for a 10-3 lead. End six saw a great exchange of bowls between the number twos who both played well with the end finishing with a single shot to Halvergate but Willies’ triple replied with a single on the next end to move 11-4 up and still in control. The pattern of the game was now changing though with Halvergate lead Kerry Greenacre now finding the jack regularly after struggling to reach the jack on the opening ends. Carter found their lead ebbing away as Halvergate took two shots on the next end but worse was to come for Carter. Halvergate enjoyed a brilliant ninth end taking four shots and cutting the deficit to just 11-10 and then levelled the game at 11-11 on the tenth end. A superb final bowl by Keith Cooke on the next end finally took his triple into the lead at 12-11 and a wall of woods protecting Halvergate’s shot wood on end twelve worked and they moved 13-11. Another two shots were added by Cooke’s triple on the thirteenth end after Simon Willies was unsuccessful with two attacking bowls and Halvergate led 15-11. A great attacking bowl by Willies on the penultimate end cut Cooke’s lead to 15-12 going into the last end but any chance of salvaging anything from the game ended as Cooke’s triple took a single to win 16-12 leaving the Bob Carter triple wondering just how this game had been lost after building such a good early lead. On mat two Carter’s Nigel Willard, David Lamb & Melvin Woods faced Halvergate’s Donna Lamb, Simon Warnes & Robbie Lamb and the Halvergate skip was forced to kill the opening end forcing the jack off the mat. After two good opening bowls by Donna Lamb the head was unfortunately opened up by number two Simon Warnes. David Lamb took advantage by ditching the jack but Robbie Lamb pushed a Donna Lamb toucher forward for shot although a fluke last wood by Woods almost stole the shot. On the second end there were two good opening bowls by Nigel Willard but Warnes took shot with his second bowl. But by the finish Carter held two shots and a 2-1 lead. Halvergate drew level on the third end but a superb forehand by Melly Woods took Carter back into the lead by 3-2 on the fourth end. Willard opened the fifth end with a toucher but Halvergate got the better of Carter to lead 4-3. Two great bowls by Willard started end six with David Lamb adding a third. Simon Warnes rattled the head but still Carter held three shots. Robbie Lamb hit back for Halvergate ditching the jack but Melly Woods played a lovely backhand wood to promote a Carter bowl into shot position where it remained to level the game at 4-4 before Halvergate replied with a singles on the next two ends to lead 6-4. On the ninth end David Lamb played a good wood to take shot but Simon Warnes immediately took the shot back for Halvergate. Carter had the last laugh though scoring two shots to level the game at 6-6. A measure was needed to decide shots on the next end and it resulted in Carter being awarded two shots and an 8-6 lead. The following end saw Carter finally break away. Melly Woods played a great last wood and Robbie Lamb’s attempt to retrieve the situation failed leaving Carter with three shots and an 11-6 lead. Robbie Lamb was left with a real pressure shot on the next end and responded well by ditching the jack to take two shots but Carter replied with a single on the thirteenth end to move 12-8 up. Halvergate knew they needed to win the penultimate end to give themselves any chance but a superb fire shot by Melly Woods buried the jack and his triple had a 13-8 lead going into the final end. Carter totally controlled the final end leaving Robbie Lamb with few options but he still took shot with his last bowl leaving Carter 13-9 winners.  

After the break Bob Carter sprang a surprise bringing in substitutes John Turner & George Clarke. Turner replaced Simon Willies as skip and Clarke replaced Jamie Forster leaving Jason Woods the only survivor of the losing Carter triple from the first half. The Halvergate triples remained unchanged with Robbie Lamb’s triple facing John Turner’s triple. Robbie Lamb took an early lead scoring two shots on the first end after Turner missed with two forcing shots but Carter replied with a single on the second end. Turner sprang the jack a few inches to level the game on the third end and took another single on the fourth end when Robbie Lamb was slightly wide with an attempted draw. The Carter triple then added singles on the next two ends to lead 5-2. Good bowling by Warnes left Halvergate holding two shots and the jack in the ditch on the seventh end with just the skips left to play. Turner, while attempting to ditch Clarke’s toucher, instead promoted Donna Lamb’s toucher and the game was level at 5-5. On the next end Simon Warnes took the jack close to the ditch line and Robbie Lamb drew in a second shot with his last wood to move their triple 7-5 up. Little separated the triples in a close game but an excellent last wood by Robbie Lamb kept his triple two shots ahead on the eleventh end. Again Robbie Lamb attacked with great effect on the next end to give his triple a 12-8 lead with only three ends to go. With Halvergate holding two shots on the thirteenth end John Turner produced a great bowl to take shot making Robbie Lamb’s last wood a real pressure bowl. After much discussion Lamb played a forehand forcing shot that only succeeded in promoting a George Clarke bowl. Turner then added a third bowl to cut Halvergate’s lead to 12-11 with two ends to go. Halvergate managed to hold out to score a single on the penultimate end and take a 13-11 lead into the final end but they quickly found themselves in trouble as a perfect drawn wood by Jason Woods and Turner’s first bowl put Carter in the driving seat again. Robbie Lamb was unable to change the situation and Carter took two shots to force a 13-13 draw in a game that looked to be Halvergates after twelve ends. On mat one the game between Melly Woods’ Carter triple and Keith Cooke’s Halvergate triple was close over the opening six ends. Halvergate had held four shots on the fifth end before Cooke left Woods a tempting target which Melly Woods took full advantage of to kill the end before scoring two on the replayed end for a 4-3 lead. Another single was scored by Carter on the next end but the seventh end proved to be a big one for Carter as they scored four shots for a 9-3 lead. Umpire Will Hoggan was called in to measure on the ninth end and his measure awarded Carter two more shots and Cooke’s triple were now trailing 12-3 and Halvergate’s dreams of cup final glory were ebbing away fast. They did manage to pull two shots back on the tenth end but Carter replied with a single to lead 13-5. Halvergate took a single on end twelve after another measure and cut the deficit to 13-6 but with the game now finished on mat two they knew they had a mountain to climb to avoid defeat. The result though now looked inevitable as Carter moved 15-6 up after scoring two shots on the thirteenth end. This left Cooke’s triple needing to score ten shots over the last two ends to win the match but they could only score a single on the fourteenth end and Bob Carter could begin the celebrations. The triples played out the meaningless last end with Halvergate scoring a four to leave Carter with a 15-11 win and a 5-3 points victory. Total shots were 53-49 in Carter’s favour. Without a doubt Bob Carter started as firm favourites to lift the cup but Halvergate pushed them all the way and can be pleased with their showing on the night. Both teams should be congratulated for playing to a high standard while enduring the loud music from the other room, hardly an ideal scenario for a match of this importance to finish the NCSMBA Summer season.  

                                                                                                                                     Posted 16-9-16

                                                           Bob Carter - Summer Cup Winners

                                                            Halvergate - Summer Cup Runners-up

Willies captures maiden county title at first attempt

Two thirds of last seasons triples champions Jason Woods and Jamie Forster were this time skipped by fellow Bob Carter team member Simon Willies who lifted the triples championship at Hingham Sports Hall. In the final they were up against another new debutante in a county final who was Jack Marshall from Connaught who led for Morgan Warnes of Horsford BC and Jack Pye of Wymondham. The all Bob Carter triple made the best start possible by picking up six shots on the first end. Things looked to be getting better as Carter were holding yet another six shots until a great pressure wood bowled by Pye saw them get on the board with a single. Pye's last wood again on the third end brought the young triple a point closer as Willies failed to take shot, bringing the scores closer to 6-2. However, Carter had their eyes tightly on the prize as lead Jason Woods stormed to catch the jack with both of his woods, backed up with one of Forster's woods. Pye played a fire shot and achieved a single out of his efforts but Willies yet again attempted to impersonate the same shot but went too wide. Pye took this opportunity and drew beautifully to get two shots which was then blown apart by Willies' perfect attempt at a fire shot, which gained Carter's triple a necessary shot to tip-toe ahead at 7-2. On the fifth end it was Forster who provided two bowls of quality while Willies applied the pressure at skip which meant Pye having to fire on both occasions but neither had that much effect. The match was now starting to get away from him and his triple going down three shots and trailing 10-2. A busy sixth end saw a good split played by Marshall at lead to give him two shots early on with Pye then trailing the jack in the ditch to hold one shot. Both skips failed to improve the situation from there with the score now at 3-10. A tight head on the seventh end saw a good last wood played by Willies to earn him a single which meant the last end not being needed to play with the score now at 11-3. The third / fourth play off was contested between Janet Pinchen, Trevor Pinchen and George Clarke who let slip a 5-2 lead to go down 5-10 to Nigel Willard, John Turner and Melvin Woods who only manged to just get out of their group on shots. In the quarter finals it was a battle of the new boys as Simon Willies beat Gary Best 6-5 in a tight contest as Melvin Woods edged out Robbie Lamb 9-8. Keith Cooke's triple went down heavy to Jack Pye by 19-2 while George Clarke surprisingly beat Jon Sparham by 7-6.

Norfolk triples champions 2016/17 

Triples runner's up 2016/17

                                                                                                   Posted 11-9-16

 Norfolk Premier lose to England

 The ESMBA Presidents Day was held at Tamworth IBC. The Inter-County Champions are always invited to play the England team on that day so this year it was Norfolk Premier who made the journey to take on the national team. A tight opening season saw England carve out a 5-3 points lead with Lewis Cranston, Rob Cranston, Bob Oatway & Melvin Woods Norfolk’s only winners with a 12-8 victory in the fours. Owen Cranston, Jason Woods & Gary Best, making his debut for Norfolk, also played well drawing their triples game 12-12. England took a big lead in the second session of rinks matches though winning all four games convincingly to establish a 13-3 points lead at the halfway stage. Norfolk staged a fightback in the third session as England suffered three heavy defeats and only avoided a complete whitewash by winning the fours game on the last end. Neil Davidson of Hempnall was in terrific form in the singles as he stormed to a 20-4 win while Wymondham’s Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye piled on the pressure in the pairs winning 19-8. Owen Cranston, Gary Best & Keith Cooke looked a class above their opponents as they won 21-9 in the triples. Rob Cranston, Bob Oatway, Simon Willies & Jon Sparham came so close to making it a perfect session for Norfolk when they went into the last end of their game drawing 8-8 but dropped two shots on the last end denying former West Mids star Simon Willies a win on his Norfolk debut. The final session of rinks games provided just one win for Norfolk as Owen Cranston, Jack Pye, Jason Woods & Keith Cooke won their game 13-6 leaving England with a 21-11 points win on the day. It was a good workout for Norfolk Premier though who begin the defence of their Inter-County Championship title with a home match against Surrey Premier on Sunday week at Hingham Sports & Social Club.   

                                                                                                                   Posted 6-9-16

Deaf Sport lift Division Two title

Deaf Sport are the Summer League Division Two champions after they won their final league fixture by 8-0 at Windows. They will make a return to Division One after Kirk Atkins, John Jeffery & Laura Hawksworth beat Keith Halford’s triple 13-11 and Gillian Amos, Rosemary Hall & Robin Amos beat Mike Boswell’s triple 23-4 in an excellent first half display. After the break Window’s agony continued as Robin Amos stormed to a 35-0 win against Keith Halford while Laura Hawksworth beat Mike Boswell 17-7. It has been another poor season for Windows who have only won one league match while Deaf Sports can begin to plan a campaign in the top flight. Second placed Thorpe Marriott entertained Hingham in a match that could have earned Marriott automatic promotion between the two other promotion candidates. The question of who goes up with Deaf Sports is still unanswered though as Hingham held Marriott to a 4-4 draw. Hingham now need maximum points in their last match against Watton if they are to pip Marriott for second place by one point. Will Townsend, Graham Tweed & Eileen Herbert kept Hingham’s hopes alive with wins against Richard Perkins and Trevor Pinchen. Thorpe Marriott’s wins were earned by Tony Turner & John Jarvis who both beat Keith Thomas.

                                                                                                                                            Posted 28-8-16


Hempnall clinch Challenge Cup in close final

Hempnall claimed their first Challenge Cup after a tense final against Bob Carter at Wymondham's Kett's Park venue. Before the start of the match the captains tossed for who would be the home and away teams, Hempnall lost the toss meaning they were the away team and Bob Carter home. To make the tie fair however both mats were moved at half time. The first session's of singles both went Hempnall's way with Neil Davidson beating Jason Woods 10-12 while Roger Parker beat Jamie Forster 7-9. It was Carter though who took a 6-4 halftime lead as Ellaine Willies, Jean Woods, Gary Best and Simon Willies beat Lewis, Owen and Rob Cranston with Paul Baker 9-6 while a big 14-2 win for Sue Hunt, Steve Bridge, Rob Howlett and Melly Woods against Bernie Cudden, Richard Harrowing, Joan Cann and Charlie Archie gave Carter overall shots for the first session.  Second session singles again saw Hempnall dominant with Neil Davidson producing his second win of the night against Jamie Forster 10-5 but Roger Parker was held to an entertaining 6-6 draw against Jason Woods. Both fours saw solid wins for both teams as Simon Willies block beat Charlie Archer's four 12-6 but the match was won courtesy of a 12-4 win by Paul Baker's four against Melly Woods' block which gave them a 7-3 session win and an 11-9 win overall.



Wymondham are Summer League Champs

Wymondham have ended Bob Carter’s dominance in the NCSMBA Summer League by clinching the title after several years of finishing as runners-up behind the Drayton based giants. Carter visited Wymondham looking for a win to close the gap at the top but a hard fought match ended level at 4-4. Carter’s Nigel Willard, Jamie Forster & Gary Best inflicted two defeats on Wymondham by beating Jon Sparham’s triple 14-10 and Chris Mann’s triple 14-8 but the home side earned a draw courtesy of a 21-12 win for Mann against Melvin Woods and a 19-8 win for Sparham against Simon Willies. This left Wymondham looking for a maximum 8-0 win at home to Halvergate in their final league match of the season to ensure their first ever Summer League title. They were halfway there by the interval as Roger Steele, Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye beat Robbie Lamb’s triple 19-9 and Neil Davidson, Chris Mann & Jon Sparham beat Keith Cooke’s triple 18-13 and the second half saw them take the title as Jon Sparham’s triple beat Robbie Lamb 24-7 and Jack Pye’s triple beat Keith Cooke 18-13. Bob Carter completed their league campaign by winning 6-2 away to Horsford Heroes followed by an 8-0 home win the next night against Kirby Bedon to finish as runners-up. Bob Carter still have a great chance of silverware though after defeating Wymondham 5-3 in their Summer Cup semi-final clash at Drayton. A tight first half saw Carter’s Nigel Willard, Jamie Forster & Gary Best beat Jack Pye’s triple 20-16 while Melly Woods’ Carter triple were held to a 12-12 draw by Jon Sparham. Roger Steele, Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye kept Wymondham’s cup hopes alive by beating Jason Woods, David Lamb & Melly Woods 19-7 but Gary Best’s triple secured Carter a place in the final against Halvergate by beating Jon Sparham’s triple by just two shots. In Division Two Hingham won 8-0 at home to Windows and it is still possible that they could be involved in the promotion race if they can get a couple of good results in their last two matches.

Mann runner-up in UK Open

Wymondham’s Chris Mann reached the final of the UK Open in Bromsgrove before losing to Scotland’s Lawrence Moffat by 11-4. Chris Mannwon the opening two ends but by the ninth end trailed 10-3 and the game had slipped away from him. It was a good day for Norfolk bowlers as Jack Pye, also of Wymondham SMBC, reached the semi-final to set up a showdown between the two Wymondham & Norfolk players. Chris Mann set about the match playing positive bowls and the tactics worked as he moved into a 6-1 lead after five ends in a game that Mann eventually won by 11-4. In the third place play-off Jack Pye lost 13-11 to Sweden’s Victor Andersson. Mann had finished runner-up to Ireland’s Vincent Dornan in Group 22 to qualify for the main knock-outs where he went on to beat James Smith 14-10, Belgium’s Dimitri Payne 11-6, Ken Kelly 17-3 and Irish ace Gary McNabb on a tie break before beating Pye. Neil Davidson of Hempnall qualified for the Plate knock-outs where he lost 9-8 to Welshman Martin Harries in the second round after he had stormed to an 18-5 win against young Northants star Callum Beale. Karl Newby of Carleton Rode also qualified for the Plate knock-outs but lost 13-8 to Sam Harvey of Wales in the first round. Laura Hawksworth of Deaf Sports suffered five defeats in Group 5 which left her in the knock-out rounds of the Shield where she suddenly hit terrific form stringing together a run of wins against Sweden’s Pontus Guldestam, Mark Hollis, Alan Spicer & Suzanne Finlay before losing by just one shot to rated bowler Stephen Holdsworth in the semi-finals. Steve Hall was another Norfolk bowler who failed to win a game in the group stage but then played well in the Shield Competition. He beat Rosa Albrektsson, Charlotte Rollings, John Parnell & Craig Evans to reach the quarter-finals where he lost by one shot to Antony Bull.  John Jeffery of Deaf Sports finished bottom of Group 5 and lost in the second knock-out round of the Shield by 12-5 against Martyn Dubb.  

                                                                                                                           Posted 21-8-16

Norfolk Over 60’s win first match on new mats

The Norfolk CSMBA have seriously upgraded their equipment ready to become the first Premier Team county in the I.C.C to use the latest Verde blue mats in place of the traditional green mats. The first bowl on the new mats was delivered by Norfolk Over 60’s Organiser Teresa Goldsmith at the Over 60’s Squad Day on Thursday. Defending Inter-County Champions Norfolk will use the mats for the forthcoming winter season at their home venue in Hingham but the first competitive match on the mats saw Norfolk Over 60’s entertain Friends of Essex in a friendly match on Sunday. Norfolk Over 60’s had a successful day beating the Essex team 86-42 on points. The race for the Summer League Division One Championship title appears to be going right to the wire. Title favourites Wymondham were held to a 4-4 draw at Kirby Bedon which gave defending champions Bob Carter some hope of holding on to their title. In the first half Kirby’s Jill Watson, John Aggas & Phil Watson snatched a one shot win against Andy Jackson, Debbie Sparham & Jon Sparham but the visitors won heavily on the other mat as Melvyn Barker, Neil Davidson & Chris Mann romped to a 22-8 win against Shirley Brown, Jimmy Dye & Joe Brown. Mann’s triple failed to repeat their success after the break though as they went down by 13-10 to Carol Aggas, John Aggas & Phil Watson but Wymondham secured a share of the points by beating Joe Brown’s triple 13-8. Bob Carter meanwhile won by a maximum 8-0 at home to Horsford Heroes scoring a massive 101 shots against just 36. Jason Woods, Simon Willies & Melvin Woods beat Mark Tuttle’s triple 26-9 while Jamie Forster, Gary Best & David Lamb won by 19-12 against Sue Fox. Things went from bad to worse for the visitors after the break as David Lamb’s triple beat Jane James’ triple 28-5 and Melvin Woods’ triple beat Sue Fox 28-9. In the other Division One match played Diss got revenge for their defeat at Kirby Bedon by winning the return fixture 6-2. Morris Taylor, Trish Taylor & Terry Newby led the way with a win of 19-12 against Joe Brown’s triple before beating Gerald Chilvers 19-6. Graham Mobbs and his triple made sure of a home win by beating John Aggas 17-7 while Shirley Brown, Jimmy Dye & Joe Brown scored Kirby’s only win beating Graham Mobbs 13-11. In Division Two the battle for promotion could hardly be tighter as only one point separates the top three sides. Deaf Sport beat bottom club Watton 6-2 with Gillian Amos, John Jeffery & Robin Amos winning 29-6 against M Conran while Laura Hawksworth’s 18-5 win left Deaf Sports 4-0 up at the break. Laura Hawksworth skipped her triple to another win in the second half while D Gower scored a consolation 22-14 win for Watton against Robin Amos. Deaf Sports were then held to a 4-4 draw though as visitors Thorpe Marriott kept the pressure on the leaders. Sheila Redwood, Kath Frost & Tony Turner of Marriott beat Robin Amos 16-9 and Laura Hawksworth by 14-13. The match between Windows and Hingham also finished level at 4-4.  

                                                                                                                      Posted 14-8-16

Wymondham remain on track

Wymondham won for the eighth time in nine Summer League Division One games to remain top just ahead of defending champions Bob Carter. Melvyn Barker, Neil Davidson & Chris Mann opened in fine style at Horsford beating Mark Tuttle’s triple 20-5 and repeated the feat after the break with an identical score against Sue Fox. Roger Steele, Jon Sparham & Jack Pye’s 24-9 win against Jane James’ triple ensured an away win but Mark Tuttle scored a one shot victory against Jack Pye to restrict the visitors to a 6-2 win. In their previous match Wymondham hammered First Bus 8-0 while vastly improving their shot difference. Roger Steele, Jack Pye & Jon Sparham beat Lesley Crowe’s triple 31-7 to give Wymondham a flying start while Mary Fisher, Neil Davidson & Chris Mann added a 16-8 win against Colin Coman’s triple. The Wymondham onslaught continued unabated in the second half with Chris Mann’s triple beating Lesley Crowe’s triple 32-4 and Jon Sparham beating Colin Coman 21-8. In a busy period for First Bus they visited Kirby Bedon and held the home side to a 4-4 draw courtesy of two wins for Betty Cox, Rex Cox & Elaine Oatway who beat Joe Brown’s triple 14-11 and Phil Watson’s triple 12-11 but both home triples beat Bob Oatway’s triple to make honours even. Three nights later First Bus entertained Kirby Bedon in the return match and it was a different story as Kirby inflicted an 8-0 home defeat on their opponents. Carol Aggas, Phil Watson & John Aggas beat Elaine Oatway’s triple 15-12 and followed that with an 18-7 win against Bob Oatway. Shirley Brown, Gerald Chilvers & Joe Brown beat Bob Oatway’s triple 19-13 and Elaine Oatway’s triple by 23-15. In between these games First Bus travelled to Diss where they went down 6-2. Gill Coleman, G Atter & Terry Newby inflicted the damage beating both Elaine Oatway and Bob Oatway’s triples by 13-11 while A Buckenham, Keith Buck & Bill Francis added a 16-12 win against Elaine Oatway. A first half 19-7 win for Bob Patterson, Colin Coman & Bob Oatway earned their side two points. In Division Two Forncett won 6-2 at home to Watton. Mike Smail, Linda Preece & Peter Lock won by 18-10 against Rosemary McQuoid’s triple and also beat Dennis Gower’s triple 20-10 which leaves Forncett top of the table but chasing clubs Thorpe Marriott & Deaf Sports both have games in hand. 

                                                                                                                                                  Posted 7-8-16



Chris Mann takes on Comps role again

Chris Mann of Wymondham SMBC has taken on the role of NCSMBA Competition Secretary again and Club Secretaries can expect to receive their entry forms for the joint Norfolk County Championships/National Qualifiers events by Tuesday. The first event of the new winter season will be the Triples which will be held at Hingham Sports & Social Club on Sunday 11-9-16. Norfolk Chairman Selwyn Goldsmith said that he was delighted that Chris Mann had agreed to his personal request to him to reconsider his decision not to continue in the role that he made such a success of last season. He added that Mann’s attempts to take the organisation of the competitions to a new level, with the innovation of publishing the live draws on the NCSMBA Facebook page, had proved hugely popular with bowlers. Chris Mann and his Assistant Jon Sparham both shared a strong desire to improve the running of the events when they were appointed last year and their dynamism was needed in the sport. There had been great concern that the key post had been left unfilled after the NCSMBA  Annual General Meeting in June, with the competition dates already booked to start in September, and there will be relief that Chris Mann is now back in place.   


Carter close gap on leaders Wymondham

Defending champions Bob Carter have narrowed the gap between themselves and leaders Wymondham to just seven points in the NCSMBA Summer League Division One. They swept aside visitors First Bus in the first half with George Clarke, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods beating Colin Coman’s triple 37-1 and Jamie Forster, Gary Best & David Lamb beating Bob Oatway’s triple 24-12. Any hopes First Bus had of a better second half were quickly dispelled as Melvin Woods’ triple beat Bob Oatway 27-5 and David Lamb’s triple beat Lesley Crowe 26-7 to ensure an 8-0 maximum win. First Bus also suffered an 8-0 defeat at third placed Halvergate. Donna Lamb, Robbie Lamb & Steven Lamb opened with a 20-4 win against Colin Coman while Kerry Greenacre, Roy Walker & Keith Cooke beat Bob Oatway 21-9. The second half brought more misery for the visitors as Steven Lamb’s triple beat Bob Oatway 33-13 and Keith Cooke’s triple beat Colin Coman 24-5 to leave First Bus bottom of the table and with a relegation battle on their hands. Kirby Bedon took maximum points at home to Diss which saw them move past their opponents in the table. Two tight first half games both went Kirby Bedon’s way with Jill Watson, John Aggas & Phil Watson beating Terry Newby 11-6 and Shirley Brown, Gerald Chilvers & Joe Brown winning by just two shots against Graham Mobbs. The home side then moved up a gear with Watson’s triple beating Graham Mobbs 25-10 and Joe Brown beating Terry Newby 26-8 to complete a good night for the home side. In Division Two Forncett missed an opportunity to move top of the table when they were held to a 4-4 draw by visitors Hingham. Jackie Capell, Trevor Curry-Smith & Keith Thomas inflicted the damage on Forncett with a 17-13 win against Linda Preece and an 18-10 win against Peter Lock. In a clash between the two bottom clubs Watton entertained Windows but failed to make home advantage count as they suffered a 6-2 defeat. Roy Whitmore, David Walker & Mike Boswell of Windows beat Roger Braham 21-11 & Dennis Gower by 17-10 while Maureen Dease, Ken Dease & Avril Walker added a 13-11 win against Daphne Braham. Summer Cup semi-final action saw Halvergate win 8-0 at Watton to reach the final where they will face either Bob Carter or Wymondham. The first half saw Halvergate take control with Keith Cooke winning 21-9 and Robbie Lamb winning 18-3 and in the second half they were equally impressive with Cooke winning 24-12 and Lamb winning 19-10.


Halvergate v Wymondham in Norwich Cup

The draw for the Norwich Cup 2016/17 took place at the Bure League AGM and holders Halvergate were drawn at home to Wymondham in what should prove a fabulous match. City League side First Bus are at home to Connaught “B” with a home draw against Hempnall in the Second Round the reward for the winning team. Hingham entertain Framingham Earl with the winners of that tie entertaining Harling Rec in the next round. Forncett are drawn at home to National Club Champions Bob Carter. Horsford Heroes have a home draw against their old rivals Kirby Bedon while last season’s beaten finalists Thorpe Marriott have home advantage against Hevingham. Connaught “A” face a tricky tie at Horsford BC where they will find the mats quite different from their own. Bradwell have been drawn at home to City of Norwich League side Sprowston.


Holders Tuddenham face Marriott

The Bure Cup draw for 2016/17 has given holders East Tuddenham a first round match against Thorpe Marriott. Halvergate, who lost in the final to East Tuddenham, drew Hevingham in the Preliminary Round with the winners facing Horsford BC in the next round. In the remaining ties Horsford Heroes play Kirby Bedon and Windows play Woodbastwick. At the Bure League AGM it was revealed that Coltishall have withdrawn from both the Bure League & the Tens League for the coming season. Coltishall had a fabulous run of success in the early days of short mat bowls in Norfolk with Tony Elvin winning the Norfolk Singles title in 1988/89, Willie Jefferies winning it in 1991/92 and the club dominating the now defunct Wensum League in its early years. Coltishall last won the Bure League Championship title in 2011/12, when they came close to doing the double losing by just two points to Kirby Bedon in the Bure Cup Final, but are believed to have had concerns over raising a full team for the coming winter campaign.     

                                                                                                                                                          Posted 30-7-16

Carter win at Diss

Defending Summer League champions Bob Carter earned a 5-3 win at Diss where the home side put up stout resistance. Diss triple Bill Francis, Keith Buck & Graham Mobbs held Jamie Forster, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods to a 13-13 draw but Carter took a half time lead courtesy of a 21-14 win by Nigel Willard, Simon Willies & John Turner against Terry Newby’s triple. After the break Trish Taylor replaced Bill Francis in Graham Mobbs’ triple and they beat John Turner’s triple 17-10, a notable victory considering Turner’s triple are all former England internationals. But Bob Carter got the all important win on the other mat to ensure victory as Melvin Woods’ triple beat Terry Newby’s triple 21-10. Wymondham remain top of the table though after an excellent 6-2 away win at Halvergate where they scored 59 shots against Halvergate’s 53 which will convince them that this could be the year that they finally end Carter’s stranglehold on the title. At the other end of the table Horsford Heroes entertained First Bus with the away team collecting a valuable 6-2 away win. Elaine Oatway, Rex Cox & Lesley Crowe opened with a 17-12 win against Mally Kemp, Chris Woodhouse & Mark Tuttle while Betty Cox, Colin Coman & Bob Oatway made it 4-0 beating Sue Fox 17-9. After the break Lesley Crowe’s triple, with Eddie Costello now at lead, added a 20-13 win against Jane James but Mark Tuttle’s triple won 14-11 against Bob Oatway to deny First Bus maximum points. In Division Two there was a top of the table encounter with leaders Thorpe Marriott entertaining Deaf Sports. The first half was shared with Marriott’s Jenny Walker, Peter Walker & John Jarvis beating John Robertson’s triple 16-9 while Gillian Amos, Caroline Mohamad & Robin Amos of Deaf Sport beat Richard Perkins 13-9. The second half followed the same pattern with Robin Amos beating Sylvia Turner 15-13 and Tony Turner beating John Robertson 19-7 leaving the match tied at 4-4. Deaf Sports won 6-2 at home to Hingham with the Robin Amos triple leading the way beating Keith Thomas 19-10 and Andy Sindle by 20-9 while Richard Sutton’s triple added a 16-10 win.  

                                                                                                                 Posted 23-7-16


Bob Carter win National Club Championship for second time

Bob Carter won the National Club Championship at Daventry for the second time. They previously won the title in 2011 and with Kirby Bedon having won in 2009 it is the third time a Norfolk club side has triumphed since the competition began.


Rest in Peace

The NCSMBA is saddened to learn of the deaths of two former members, Roger Green & Edie Tye.

                                                                                Posted 18-7-16

ESMBA EGM proposal lost

County delegates arrived at the Crossroads Hotel in Weedon, Northants prepared for a long day on Saturday with a 10am start for an Extraordinary General Meeting which would be followed by the Annual General Meeting and an Open Forum. Norfolk were represented by their Chairman Selwyn Goldsmith and Records Officer Teresa Goldsmith. ESMBA Chairman Barry Hedges opened the meeting and explained that in the absence of a General Secretary Ann McGuire had agreed to take the minutes. The purpose of the EGM was to decide on a proposal put forward by the ESMBA Committee “That the ESMBA registration fee be increased by £1 from £3 to £4 to include personal accident insurance for every ESMBA registered member to take effect from September 2016.” The Chairman then introduced Neil Hobbs, a manager within Sutton Winson’s commercial division, to answer questions on the personal accident insurance. There were many questions from delegates, particularly Cheshire, on the scheme which Neil Hobbs dealt with. Delegates were told that since the details of the scheme had been sent out a change had been made and that there was now no age limitation. Norfolk CSMBA raised questions about an e-mail sent to the ESMBA requesting clarification on the issue which had gone unanswered. This involved the changes to the ESMBA Constitution put forward by West Sussex & Norfolk, and passed at the 2015 AGM, which had still failed to appear in the Constitution. Norfolk felt the proposal in its current form was not in line with the Constitution and if passed in its current form would cost Norfolk CSMBA over £1,000 as it had already set its fees at its own AGM for the 2016/17 season. After much discussion and questions the vote was taken on the proposal and could not have been closer with 18 delegates voting for the proposal and 19 delegates voting against which meant that the proposal had failed. Further discussions indicated that had the proposal set the starting date as the 2017/18 season, in line with the ESMBA Constitution, more delegates would have supported the proposal.

ESMBA Constitution not updated

The ESMBA AGM was then held and West Sussex raised the matter of the minutes and the failure of the Constitutional changes to be detailed in them. The point was made that the minutes failed to record the precise wording of the proposals that had been passed. The situation regarding the Constitutional changes passed at the previous AGM were raised and the Chairman explained that he had been told that the changes had been made and apologised for this. The meeting was assured by the Chairman that the ESMBA Constitution would be rectified with the Constitution updated and changed on the ESMBA website. Agenda item five dealt with the Officer Reports. The Chairman’s Report stated that when he was elected two years ago he had hopes of turning around the ESMBA and making it a professional well-organised Association and gave himself three years to do it. He said that this was probably not now a three year plan but did not believe it would take five years as some had told him. He highlighted setbacks which he said it had needed addressing first. These included the resignations of the Administration Officer and the Committee Secretary and thanked Brandon Whittaker for taking on the lion’s share of the workload with himself. His report stated that the year had shown him that the present set up of Administration does not work. He also said that at first glance the financial report doesn’t look good but said the World Championships was a very costly exercise to host.

Nationals to move to Melton Mowbray IBC

He told the meeting that the four main National Championship events would be held at Melton Mowbray IBC this coming season with Tamworth IBC the venue for the National Mixed Fours and Under 18s. He praised Melton Mowbray IBC as a good venue and with a large car park.

Treasurer’s Report reveals over £10,000 loss

The Treasurer’s Report showed a loss of over £10,075 which followed on from last year’s loss of £19,302. The Treasurer, Barbara Mills, said that without the cost of the World Championships the loss on the year would have been only £5,622. Many questions were again raised over the report and various suggestions as to how the financial situation could be improved. The point made by more than one delegate was that much of the expenditure is on the “top end” bowlers such as the England team and England Ladies etc and the big events which involve a tiny percentage of our bowlers. Roger Green of North Yorks suggested that National Championship fees be raised.

Membership Cards – back to the old style

The decision was revealed to return to the old style membership cards. It was explained that the new style cards were needed for the “Countdown” scheme which the ESMBA withdrew from a while ago and that it is easier for the old style cards to be used. This is because blank cards can be issued to counties each year for them to fill in the numbers themselves for their members. The Coaching Directors Report said that there had been no coaching courses since 2013 and that records for current coaches were incomplete. It stated that all existing coaches have been contacted, where contact details are available, with a view to update records and renewing CRB/DBS certificates. There was much talk about coaching during the day, which there normally is at ESMBA AGMs, and it is remarkable that after so many years of talking on the subject so little has ever been achieved. One delegate raised the question of the value of coaching in short mat bowls where most bowlers tend to learn from the better bowlers at their clubs anyway.

Umpiring standards questioned

The Umpires Report by Martin Davies was mainly thanking others for their support. Questions were asked about the standard of umpiring. Chairman Barry Hedges indicated that the ESMBA are working on retesting umpires. He questioned the standard of some umpires who had umpired for years.  Bob Weafer said he would have no objection to retesting as he recalled that he once made an error in a final when umpiring. Brandon Whittaker’s Competition Secretaries Report said that the National Championships went smoothly over the six days and that a plate competition had been introduced into the Mixed Fours event. The election of Officers then took place. Unopposed and re-elected were President – George Clarke, Chairman – Barry Hedges, Treasurer – Barbara Mills, Competition Organiser – Brandon Whittaker, Umpires Director – Martin Davies and Coaching Director – David Millington-Jones. Elected as Committee members were Roy Duke, Rachel Pedley & Rachel Cordy. Suzanne Gunter was then proposed and elected as Committee Secretary. The positions of Development Officer and Administration Officer were left unfilled. Honorariums were agreed which were £500 for the Chairman, £700 for the Treasurer, £350 for the Competition Secretary, £300 for the Umpires Secretary and £650 for the Competition Secretary. Brandon Whittaker insisted on putting his Honorarium of £650 back “into the pot.”

Administration Officer role in doubt

The AGM was followed by an Open Forum. The Administration Officer post was discussed and it was suggested that the ESMBA Committee considers possible Constitution changes to revert back to appointing separate officers for various roles and abolishing the post. Safeguarding was again discussed in detail, this subject seems to take up so much time these days. Barry Hedges was asked just how many cases he had to deal with over the year and he answered two.  ESMBA is funding welfare officer courses which are four hours long and bowls specific. A long discussion was had on the BDA. It was agreed that Barry Hedges continues to talk to the BDA but past history should be kept in mind. There was a general feeling that short mat bowls had benefited little, if any, by its costly past association with the BDA. Coach Bowls was discussed, training is £130 per coach. Delegates were told that you could just do the generic part of the course and the short mat bowls modules. I.C.C was discussed and there was much amusement at Kent’s proposal that counties who fail to provide a free tea or coffee for visiting teams should be fined. The point of the proposal was that counties like Kent provide free hot drinks to visiting teams while counties who use Bowls Clubs as their venues do not because of the cost. The matter gave some delegates the opportunity to bring some light relief to the meeting but a vote indicated Kent’s view did not have a lot of support.

I.C.C Roll-ups to stay the same

There was a discussion on roll-ups with Cheshire strongly putting the case for home teams to be allowed roll-ups while the away team were not. Eventually the option of remaining with the current system or returning to the half hour each roll-up was put to the meeting. 29 delegates for the current 2 up and 2 down system while just 4 delegates voted for the half hour roll-ups.

Shock vote at Open Forum opens door to players changing counties

The question of bowlers being allowed to play for whichever county they want each season, regardless of where they live, was raised. Barry Hedges called for a vote on the issue and seemed surprised when 18 delegates voted in favour of this change and only 10 against.

West Mids dress code question

West Mids asked how strictly dress code would be enforced, no clear answer seemed to be forthcoming.

Complaints over noise in Norfolk v Essex Final

One delegate complained of the volume of noise in the I.C.C Premier Final between Norfolk and Essex. Barry Hedges explained that matches between these teams are like local derbies and both teams had brought supporters. The delegate said that the umpires should have taken action over this issue but this did not seem to receive support across the room. Kent raised the issue of players being tied once they had played for one of their Premier team in the knock-out rounds. They had to call in two “A” Team players because of injuries and then could not play them in their “A” Team in the knockouts. They were informed that this is in the rules although one delegate queried this. Derbyshire raised the question of why, after three rinks had played off for a National Place, they had not been allowed to enter. It was explained to them that under the rules a minimum of four rinks should have played to get a National place. The Competition Organiser said that if they had less than four entries in a competition he would try to join them up with another county, who also had less than the required entry numbers, to play off for a National place.

It should be noted that in an Open Forum the ESMBA are not required to implement changes that delegates are asked to vote on. Delegates are given the chance to raise issues in an Open Forum that may not arise doing the formal business of an AGM. Since his election as ESMBA Chairman it has become a common feature for Barry Hedges to call for votes on various issues raised at Open Forums and generally the ESMBA has implemented these decisions although it should be stressed they are not binding on the ESMBA Committee, only votes that take place in the AGM, or an EGM, are binding.   

                                                                                                             Posted 17-7-16

Heroes win at First Bus

Summer League Division One action saw Horsford Heroes pull off a 6-2 away win at First Bus despite the heroics of Eddie Costello, Colin Coman & Bob Oatway who ran out 21-7 winners against Mally Kemp, Jo Turner & Mark Tuttle in the opening game. David Davitt, Russell Hubbard & Sue Fox levelled the match by halftime as they beat Bob Pattison, Les Tooes & Rex Cox 19-13 and with Jane James’ triple beating Lesley Crowe 13-12 and Chris Woodhouse beating Bob Oatway 14-12 Horsford Heroes were on their way to victory. In Division Two Windows were held to a 4-4 draw by visitors Watton. Mike Boswell’s triple kept Windows in the match beating Roger Braham 23-9 and Daphne Braham 20-7. The other Windows’ triples failed to collect a point as Avril Walker went down 21-8 to Roger Braham and Keith Halford lost 16-13 to Daphne Braham.

                                                                                  Posted 17-7-16

First Bus win Dave Durrant Memorial

This year’s winners of the Dave Durrant Memorial Triples, played at Thorpe Marriott, were Elaine Oatway, Lesley Crowe & Bob Oatway of First Bus. Runners-up were David Walker, Mally Woodhouse & Avril Walker of Windows. The event raised £79 for the East Anglian Children’s Hospice.

                                                                                                          Posted 11-7-16

Elaine Oatway, Bob Oatway & Lesley Crowe of First Bus

Sparham's sparkle as Wymondham move clear

Wymondham opened up a twelve point lead over second placed Halvergate in Division One of the Summer League after a maximum 8-0 home win against Diss. Melvyn Barker, Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye opened with a massive 22-2 win against Bill Francis, Trish Taylor & Graham Mobbs while Andrew Jackson, Neil Davidson & Jon Sparham beat Morris Taylor, Karl Newby & Terry Newby 18-10. Both second half games were closer but still went Wymondham’s way as Sparham’s triple beat Mobbs 20-16 and Pye’s triple beat Newby 15-9. Halvergate played a Horsford Heroes team still without a win in the league this season but their hopes of closing the gap on the leaders were shattered as they were held to a 4-4 draw on their own mats and the return match at Horsford also finished 4-4. Horsford’s Mally Kemp, Chris Woodhouse & Mark “The Marvel” Tuttle beat Robbie Lamb’s triple 11-10 and Nigel James, Carol Kemp & Jane James also beat Robbie Lamb’s triple by one shot as Horsford Heroes collected a creditable draw at Halvergate. In the return game Mark Tuttle’s triple beat Steven Lamb 13-10 and Russell Hubbard, Sue Fox & Jane James also inflicted a 14-13 defeat on Steven Lamb in another 4-4 draw as Halvergate’s title hopes took a major blow. In Division Two leaders Thorpe Marriott won 5-3 at bottom club Windows with Marjorie Hall’s triple winning 19-7 against Avril Walker, Tony Turner’s triple beating Keith Halford 15-13 and Sylvia Turner’s triple holding Mike Boswell to a 17-17 draw. Boswell’s triple enjoyed the biggest win of the night beating John Jarvis 21-10. Marriott suffered only their second league defeat of the season at Forncett where the home side won 6-2 to move just one point behind Marriott. Peter Lock’s triple did the business beating Sylvia Turner 18-6 and then beating Tony Turner 15-11. In the Summer Cup Halvergate won 6-2 at home to Kirby Bedon to set up a semi-final clash with Watton. Joe Brown’s triple suffered two heavy defeats going down 27-6 to Keith Cooke and 28-9 against Steven Lamb. Halvergate’s third win was an 18-12 result against John Aggas. 

                                                                                                           Posted 10-7-16 

Norfolk Captain Jon Sparham on song for Wymondham

Norfolk AGM held at North Wymondham

The Norfolk CSMBA Annual General Meeting was held at North Wymondham on Sunday morning. The Chairman’s Report outlined recent decisions made by the Management Committee to upgrade Norfolk’s equipment, this will result in the ten ageing Verde mats being replaced in August and a new Presentation Case installed in the county venue at Hingham Sports & Social Club. Norfolk’s main County Championship trophies will also be replaced and in future, after each Presentation ceremony, they will be displayed in the cabinet. His report also noted the achievements over the past season which saw Norfolk Premier win the I.C.C and Norfolk Over 60’s win the Eastern England League. The Chairman also praised the work of Chris Mann as Competition Secretary and his Assistant Jon Sparham in their first year in those roles and said he was disappointed that they had decided not to stand for those positions for a second term of office.    The Treasurer’s Report was adopted and once again registration fees remained at the same level. The County Manager’s Report praised the Norfolk Premier team who lifted the Inter-County Championship trophy for the first time in twenty years. The Membership Secretary’s Report reported a slight drop in membership figures which is in line with the national trend. The President’s Closing address to the meeting highlighted the achievements over the past year by both the Norfolk Premier team in the I.C.C and the Norfolk Over 60’s team. The President Brian Saunders presented the Norfolk Team Manager Selwyn Goldsmith with a President’s Special Achievement award for the Norfolk Premier Team and Vice President Bob Oatway, on behalf of the President, presented Teresa Goldsmith with the President’s Distinguished Service Awardfor her work with the Norfolk Over 60’s for many years. The elections saw most of the current Officers re-elected to their posts on the NCSMBA Management Committee. Brian Saunders was elected as President and Vice Chairman, Bob Oatway as Vice President, Selwyn Goldsmith as Chairman and Press and Web Secretary, Jenny Walker as Secretary, Jill Watson as Treasurer, Lianne Mills as Membership Secretary & Safeguarding Officer, Teresa Goldsmith as Records Officer and Assistant Safeguarding Officer, Peter Smart as Umpires Officer, Chris Mann as Assistant Press & Web Secretary and Jon Sparham as Assistant Treasurer. The positions of Competition Secretary, Assistant Competition Secretary and Assistant Secretary were unfilled after no nominations were received by the Secretary and no-one was proposed from the floor. These positions were deferred and will be dealt with by the NCSMBA Management Committee. The Chairman reminded the meeting that volunteers are needed to take on these positions and told the meeting that the current Officers are getting older and cannot go on forever.     

                                                                                                                                              Posted 27-6-16 

Challenge Cup final date set

The date for the final of the Norfolk Challenge Cup between Bob Carter and Hempnall has been set for Monday 22nd August at Wymondham's venue Kett's Park. This decision has been taken by cup organiser Chris Mann due to both clubs failing to agree dates at the end of the season when the final should have been played over two legs. With both clubs unable to come to an agreement before the start of the next season over dates it has been decided the final will be one leg only. Spectators are welcome to to view the final.

Diss beat Wymondham 6-2

It was a case of mixed fortunes for title chasing Wymondham in Division One of the Summer League. They suffered a shock 6-2 defeat at Diss where Morris Taylor, Karl Newby & Terry Newby inflicted serious damage on their visitor’s title hopes with a first half win of 13-12 against Roger Steele, Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye followed by a 12-9 win against Mary Fisher, Neil Davidson & Jon Sparham. Bill Francis, Trish Taylor & Graham Mobbs made sure of victory with a 12-9 win against Steele, Sparham & Pye. Jon Sparham’s triple scored Wymondham’s two points by beating Graham Mobbs’ triple 16-13. Once again Wymondham were without Norfolk Premier singles star Chris Mann whose undoubted talents have been a major factor in transforming Wymondham from a struggling team into one of the most feared in the county over the past few seasons. Wymondham needed to make home advantage count in their next fixture and will be much happier with a 7-1 home win against Kirby Bedon. Mary Fisher, Neil Davidson & Jon Sparham were held to a 9-9 draw by Carol Aggas, Phil Watson & John Aggas in the first half but Wymondham won the other three games. Sparham’s triple beat Jimmy Dye, Gerald Chilvers & Joe Brown 19-6 while Roger Steele, Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye beat Joe Brown 25-7 and John Aggas 13-7. In the other Div One match played First Bus beat Diss 7-1 with Lesley Crowe’s triple winning their games 15-10 & 17-10 and Bob Oatway’s triple winning 17-10 and drawing 14-14. In Division Two Watton won 7-1 at home to Thorpe Marriott with Daphne Braham’s triple winning 13-7 against Tony Turner and 15-13 against John Jarvis. Watton suffered a 6-2 home defeat against Deaf Sports where John Jeffery’s triple won by 18-15 & 20-3. Deaf Sports failed to repeat their success in their next away game though as they slipped to a 5-3 defeat at Forncett. Thorpe Marriott recorded a 6-2 home win against Windows with Marjorie Hall winning 20-9, Trevor Pinchen winning 15-10 and John Jarvis winning 19-7. Summer Cup action saw Wymondham winning 8-0 at Forncett. Andrew Jackson, Neil Davidson & Jon Sparham won their games by 17-11 & 26-6 while Jack Pye’s triple won 19-8 & 18-5.

                                                                                                                   Posted 3-7-16 

Halvergate held after tremendous start

Bob Carter fought back to salvage a draw after a first half mauling away to Halvergate in their Summer League Division One clash. Fielding a very strong side the visitors were left shell-shocked as Halvergate stormed into a 4-0 halftime lead on points. Donna Lamb, Roy Walker & Keith Cooke could do no wrong as they defeated Simon Willies, Gary Best & Jason Woods 18-4 while Ray Lamb, Steven Lamb & Robbie Lamb beat Nigel Willard, John Turner & David Lamb 13-6. The defending champions secured a draw as they won both second half games with David Lamb’s triple beating Keith Cooke 16-9 and Jason Woods’ triple beating Robbie Lamb 15-11. Carter did better at First Bus where they secured a 6-2 away win. Sue Hunt, Simon Willies & Jason Woods led the way beating Bob Oatway’s triple 16-9 and Lesley Crowe’s triple 13-9. Nigel Willard, Gary Best & Melvin Woods earned the other two points with a 12-11 win against Lesley Crowe while consolation points for First Bus were picked up by Bob Pattison, Elaine Oatway & Bob Oatway who beat Melvin Woods’ triple 15-13. Wymondham maintained their title push with a maximum 8-0 home win against Horsford Heroes by recording four big wins. Andrew Jackson, Neil Davidson & Jon Sparham beat Mark Tuttle’s triple 21-9 and Chris Woodhouse’s triple by 24-7. Roger Steele, Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye beat Woodhouse 26-7 before beating Mark Tuttle 20-10. Diss enjoyed an 8-0 maximum win at home to Horsford Heroes. Morris Taylor, Trish Taylor & Terry Newby beat Mark Tuttle 18-11 and Chris Woodhouse by 24-8 while Graham Mobbs’ triple beat Woodhouse 25-9 and Tuttle by 14-10. In Division Two Forncett won 6-2 at home to Windows. Rebecca Humphreys beat Keith Halford 19-14, Martin Humphreys beat Keith Halford 26-7 while Peter Lock beat Mike Boswell 12-10. Maureen Dease, Ken Dease & Avril Walker were Windows only winning triple beating Martin Humphreys 14-9.

                                                                                                               Posted 26-6-16 

Barry Barsby Rest in Peace

The NCSMBA is saddened to learn of the death of Barry Barsby. Barry was a member of both Harling Bowls Club and also Norfolk Over 60s who he continued to play for throughout his long illness. The NCSMBA wishes to express its sincere and profound sympathy to his wife Pauline and the family.

                                                                                                                          Posted 25-6-16

Barry Barsby

Wymondham win at Carter

Wymondham pulled off a superb 5-3 away win against defending champions Bob Carter at Drayton in their Summer League Division One clash. The visiting team enjoyed an unbeaten first half as Roger Steele, Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye showed their class beating the strong rink of John Turner, Jamie Forster & David Lamb 14-6 while Neil Davidson, Andrew Jackson & Jon Sparham held the home triple of Melly Woods, Jason Woods & Simon Willies to an 11-11 draw. Jack Pye’s triple made sure of an away win for Wymondham when his triple beat Simon Willies’ triple 16-11 after the break leaving Turner, Forster & Lamb to record Carter’s only win of the night beating Jon Sparham’s triple 17-10. Division Two action saw Thorpe Marriott win 6-2 at home to Forncett. Winning triples for Marriott were Marjorie Hall, Ted Redwood & Richard Perkins who beat Rebecca Humphreys 19-12, Sheila Redwood, Mandy Marshall & Tony Turner who beat Linda Preece 17-12 and Janet Pinchen, Trevor Pinchen & Sylvia Turner who beat Rebecca Humphreys 9-8. Hingham also won 6-2 at home against Deaf Sports. Jackie Capell, Pat Groombridge & Graham Tweed beat John Jeffrey 15-14, Wendy Tweed, Colin Harris & Keith Thomas beat Robin Amos 10-8 and Will Townsend, Gordon Wilcox & Andy Sindle beat John Jeffery 13-9. Gillian Amos, Rosemary Hall & Robin Amos collected Deaf Sports only win beating Eileen Herbert 13-12. 

                                                                                                                                                                       Posted 19-6-16 

Jack Pye & Debbie Sparham pictured at a Norfolk Championship event

County Squad named for 2016/17

Norfolk Team Manager Selwyn Goldsmith has named the County Squad for the 2016/17 season when Norfolk will defend their Premier Inter-County Championship title. Two new members of the squad are expected to be pushing for places in the Premier team after relocating to Norfolk. Gary Best, formerly of Kent, and ex West Mids bowler Simon Willies have a wealth of talent & experience between them which is sure to give the manager a selection headache after his team’s stunning performances at the end of last season. An unchanged team lifted the title beating Hampshire, Cheshire & Essex and while doing so generated an incredible team spirit not equalled for years. Under normal circumstances all twenty players would have been confident to start the season in an unchanged team but the presence of Best & Willies in the squad must put a question mark over that. Three new squad members earned their places by finishing in the top thirty of the Norfolk Points table. They are Trish Taylor of Diss, Billie Barker of Wymondham & Donna Lamb of Halvergate. Good performances on Trials Day have earned places for Dave Blundell of Wortwell, Hayley Stratton of Wymondham and talented young bowler Jack Shepherd of Connaught.  

                                                                                                                                               Posted 14-6-16 

Carter’s new dream team crush Diss

Defending Norfolk Summer League Division One champions Bob Carter stormed to an emphatic 8-0 maximum home win against Diss. Carter dominated play in a one-sided first half as former England international Nigel Willard and current internationals Jamie Forster & David Lamb combined to beat Morris Taylor, Trish Taylor & Terry Newby 32-6 while Carter’s trio of former England internationals Melly Woods, John Turner & Simon Willies made their experience count as they beat Bill Francis, Graham Attoe & Graham Mobbs 19-5. After the break Carter wrapped up proceedings with Simon Willies’ triple beating Terry Newby’s triple 17-11 and David Lamb’s triple beating Graham Mobbs’ triple 17-12. Bowlers with long memories will recall the Bob Carter “dream team” put together many years ago under the captaincy of Dick Stenton in the now defunct Wensum League and history seems to be repeating itself with their current line-up which could easily become known as the new dream team. It is now difficult to imagine any team other than Carter winning the title while Wymondham, Kirby Bedon & Halvergate are likely to be left to fight it out for the runner-up spot. Kirby Bedon recorded a solid 7-1 away win at Horsford Heroes where Shirley Brown, Jimmy Dye & Joe Brown beat David Davitt, Russell Hubbard & Sue Fox 14-8 and then beat Nigel James, Carol Kemp & Mark Tuttle 18-7. Carol Aggas, Gerald Chilvers & John Aggas were also unbeaten with an 18-9 win against Richard Hart, Jane Crosby & Chris Woodhouse and a 10-10 draw against Mally Kemp, Jo Turner & former Cromer skip Jane James. In Division Two Hingham were held to a 4-4 draw by visitors Forncett. Martin Humphreys, Tony Ottewell & Rebecca Humphreys led the way for the visitors beating Mike Groombridge, Trevor Curry-Smith & Eileen Herbert 22-12 and then beating Will Townsend, Gordon Wilcox & Keith Thomas 17-10. Hingham earned a draw courtesy of an 18-11 win for Jackie Capell, Pat Groombridge & Ron Harvey against Peter Lock’s triple and a 17-13 win for Cynthia Powell, Graham Tweed & former Cambs county skip Andy Sindle against Peter Lock’s triple. In the Summer Cup Watton progressed into the next round after a 6-2 home win against Hingham. Mike Conran, Bryan Dibble & Daphne Braham beat Graham Tweed’s triple 19-10 in the first half and followed that with a second half win of 17-16 against Andy Sindle. A 13-10 win for Pam Pagett, Richard Adams & Roger Braham against Eileen Herbert’s triple sealed the victory for the home side. Hingham’s only win was claimed by Cynthia Powell, Gordon Wilcox & Andy Sindle who beat Roger Braham’s triple 19-9 in the first half.  

                                                                                                                                          Posted 12-6-16 

Diss come close to cup upset at Halvergate

Diss came close to causing an upset at Halvergate in the Summer Cup but the home side made it through to the next round on shots mainly due to a 19-5 win by Keith Baker, Roy Walker & R Lamb. Morris Taylor, Trish Taylor & Terry Newby were on great form for the visitors beating Kerry Greenacre, Steven Lamb & Keith Cooke 19-14 in the first half and followed that up with a 15-10 win against Robbie Lamb’s triple. A 15-10 win by Keith Cooke against Russell Davidson left the match level on points with the home side going through 58-51 on shots. Three days later the teams met again in a Summer League Division One match at Diss and once again finished level on points. Morris Taylor, Trish Taylor & Terry Newby opened with a 17-15 win against Ryan Fox, Roy Walker & R Lamb but Halvergate’s Kerry Greenacre, Steven Lamb & Keith Cooke replied with a 15-8 win against Graham Mobbs’ triple. The second half was also shared with Keith Cooke beating Terry Newby 21-15 while Graham Mobbs beat R Lamb 16-9 as the match finished 4-4 on points. Bob Carter won 5-3 at Kirby Bedon in another tight Division One clash. Former Kirby Bedon player Nigel Willard, Simon Willies & Jamie Forster had a great night for Carter as they beat Carol Aggas, John Aggas & Phil Watson 20-9 and in the second half beat Gerald Chilvers, Shirley Brown & Joe Brown 12-7. Kirby’s Jimmy Dye, Shirley Brown & Joe Brown beat ex Kirby player George Clarke, Melvin Woods & Jason Woods 14-10 in the first half but Jason Woods’ triple, with John Turner subbing for Melvin Woods, earned an 11-11 draw against Aggas, Aggas & Watson to ensure an away win for Carter. Kirby Bedon had a great start at home to Halvergate with Carol Aggas, John Aggas & Phil Watson beating Robbie Lamb’s triple 32-3 but Keith Cooke’s Halvergate triple won their games 14-11 & 16-9 and Lamb’s triple bounced back in the second half winning 19-6 to clinch a 6-2 away win for their team. In Division Two Deaf Sports enjoyed a 6-2 home win against Forncett. Rosemary Hall, Laura Hawksworth & John Jeffery won both their games beating Peter Lock 15-9 and R Humphreys 22-5 and Robin Amos added a 21-5 win against R Humphreys. Forncett’s two points were gained by Mike Smails, Jan Smails & Peter Lock who beat Robin Amos 20-7.


Two Norfolk players named in England Squad

The England Squad has been named for the 2016/17 season and two members of Norfolk’s successful I.C.C winning team have been named in the squad. Jamie Forster of Bob Carter has been called up for the first time while Halvergate’s David Lamb retains his place in the squad for another year. Nineteen squad players named are from just three counties with Cornwall having eight players selected, Cheshire six and Essex five. West Mids & North Yorks each have four players selected while Gloucestershire & Oxfordshire each have three players named in the squad. West Yorkshire & Northants, like Norfolk, also have two players each selected.    

                                                                                                                                                          Posted 5-6-16 

Winning start for Kirby & Halvergate

Both Kirby Bedon & Halvergate opened their Summer League Division One campaigns with 6-2 wins. Carol Aggas, John Aggas & Phil Watson opened for Kirby with a 23-6 win against Jo Turner, Carol Kemp & Mark Tuttle of Horsford Heroes but Mally Kemp, David Crosby & Sue Fox hit back by beating Jimmy Dye, Shirley Brown & Joe Brown 18-15. The second half belonged to Kirby as Jill Watson, Phil Watson & John Aggas beat Jane James’ triple 20-7 and Joan Costello, Shirley Brown & Joe Brown beat Mark Tuttle 19-8. Halvergate’s Kerry Greenacre, Steven Lamb & Keith Cooke were in terrific form at First Bus as they beat Bob Oatway’s triple 25-5 in the first half and after the break stormed to a 27-7 win against Colin Coman’s triple. Keith Baker, Roy Walker & Ray Lamb edged to a 13-12 win against Bob Oatway to secure the away win while Elaine Oatway, Rex Cox & Colin Coman earned First Bus two consolation points beating Ray Lamb’s triple 14-8. In Division Two Thorpe Marriott proved too hot for visitors Watton to handle as they collected a maximum 8-0 home win. In the first half Tony Turner’s triple beat Daphne Braham’s triple 18-3 while Marjorie Hall beat Roger Braham 14-10. One way traffic continued in the second half as Sylvia Turner’s triple beat Daphne Braham 21-12 and John Jarvis beat Roger Braham 23-6.  

                                                                                                                                                     Posted 28-5-16 

Dot Dawson Rest in Peace

The NCSMBA is saddened to learn of the death of Dot Dawson. Dot was a founder member of Kirby Bedon SMBC and won many league winners trophies, and cup winners trophies, while playing for the club. Dot was also a member of the Norfolk Over 60s Squad and went on bowling holidays with them to Cyprus & Malta among other trips. She will also be remembered as an excellent cook who often provided tasty food for club events such as friendlies against March Braza etc. The funeral will be at Earlham Crematorium on Monday 13th June at 3.45pm and the wake afterwards will be at Trowse White Horse where she recently celebrated her 90th birthday which was attended by family, friends and members of Kirby Bedon SMBC.

Dot Dawson

No return trip for First Bus

Visitors First Bus kept things tight at Thorpe Marriott in the Summer Cup but could not stop Thorpe Marriott’s home advantage proving decisive in the end. In the first half a strong Marriott triple of Peter Walker, Ted Redwood & John Jarvis were held to an 11-11 draw by Elaine Oatway, Lesley Crowe & Rex Cox but a 16-10 win for Dorothy Muttitt, Richard Perkins & Marjorie Hall against Linda Tooes, Betty Cox & Colin Coman gave the home side a 3-1 interval lead on points. Eddie Costello, Lesley Crowe & Rex Cox beat Sylvia Turner’s triple 12-10 to level it up but Sheila Redwood, Mandy Marshall & Tony Turner saw Thorpe Marriott over the line and into the next round by beating Colin Coman’s triple 17-13 for a 5-3 points win. Summer League Div One action saw Horsford Heroes held to a 4-4 draw by visitors Diss Green. Diss had the better of the first half with Morris Taylor, Trish Taylor & Terry Newby beating Russell Hubbard’s triple by one shot while Colin Smith, Keith Buck & Graham Mobbs beat David Davitt 15-11. The home side salvaged a draw after the break as Jane James, Mally Kemp & Russell Hubbard beat Graham Mobbs 15-9 and Mark Tuttle, Carol Kemp & Nigel James beat Terry Newby 16-14. In Div Two Thorpe Marriott won 6-2 at Hingham with Tony Turner’s triple beating E Wilcox’s triple 14-9 and former Cambs’ star Andy Sindle by 19-10. Windows drew 4-4 at home to Forncett with away skip Peter Lock beating Mike Boswell 17-11 and drawing 12-12 against David Walker. The top score of the night was achieved by Windows’ Pam Daynes, Diane Halford & Keith Halford who beat Tony Ottewell’s triple 19-9.  

                                                                                                                                    Posted 26-5-16 

Summer Season starts

Summer Cup champions Wymondham progressed safely through the first round with a 6-2 home win against Windows. They did suffer a first half wobble though as David Walker, Mally Woodhouse & Avril Walker beat Chris Mann’s triple 12-10 after scoring a five on the third end but with Jack Pye’s triple winning 24-7 & 21-7 and Mann adding a 20-12 second half win the holders emerged unscathed. Bob Carter progressed on shots at Horsford Heroes where the match finished 4-4 on points. A 25-8 win for Jamie Forster, Jason Woods & Simon Willies proved a vital factor in their victory. Division One action saw Horsford Heroes held to a 4-4 draw by visitors Diss. In Division Two Thorpe Marriott won 6-2 at Hingham. Watton Yellow were less successfull on their visit to Hingham where they lost 5-3. Former Cambridgeshire skip Andy Sindle led the way for his new club beating Roger Braham 22-10.

Nearly sixty players took part in the Norfolk Squad Trials and they included two former internationals who have relocated to Norfolk. Former Kent star Gary Best & former West Mids regular Simon Willies were both impressive on the day at Hingham while young Connaught bowler Jack Marshall also caught the eye.                                                                                                   

                                                                                                                                                      Posted 19-5-16 

Bold plans for Harling Bowls Club expansion

Harling Bowls Club are planning to increase their short mat bowls capacity as this thriving bowls club continues to attract members. Currently they have their own short mat bowls room containing two mats that stay down permanently, but bold plans with former Chairman Matt Cunningham at the helm will see a new clubhouse built with room for four short mats for members to use. Harling Bowls Club began life as an outdoor bowls club in 1973 but in 1995 members decided to build a short mat bowls room so they could continue playing throughout the winter as well. With their own club house, including a bar, the club have continued to expand and their facilities allow them to arrange fund raising events on a regular basis keeping members active and involved. Their membership, of approximately 70 members, come not only from Harling but from many surrounding towns & villages as well. Norfolk SMBA Chairman Selwyn Goldsmith and Norfolk Over 60’s Organiser Teresa Goldsmith visited the club this week to talk about the club’s plans with Matt Cunningham and Club Contact Pauline Barsby and were most impressed by the plans they saw. Anyone interested in joining the club, either for short mat bowls or outdoor, should contact the Treasurer Pauline Barsby on 01953-717275. One thing for sure is that you are assured of a warm welcome at this delightful bowls club that is at the heart of the community.    

                                                                                                                           Posted 18-5-16

Matt Cunningham - leading the project

                                                      Big extension planned for Harling bowls hall


The annual Potter’s East Coast Over 50’s Cup Week attracted a record number of entries with Kent bowlers dominating the East Coast Triples Cup while North Yorkshire & Durham bowlers won the East Coast Pairs with Paula McCallum retaining her pairs title with a different partner. The winners earned Potter’s Holiday vouchers worth up to £200 each with Potters also presenting vouchers for the next three teams in both events.
EAST COAST TRIPLES - Kent take the Cup

The triples event was played over four days in four groups with the winners of each group gaining a place in the semi-finals. By the end of the first day’s play Paula McCallum & Mac McCallum of Murton Glebe in Durham, playing with North Yorkshire’s Arthur Jackson of Easingwold at number two, led the Red Group with maximum points while one point behind them was Laurence Rolfe, Babs Water-Newman & Peter Toombs of Kent and another point behind were fellow Kent bowlers Pauline Friel, Peter Richards & Tony Friel. By close of play on Wednesday Tony Friel’s triple had moved top with McCallum second while Wendy Tweed, Maureen Bell & Graham Tweed had moved into third spot. Going into the final session on Thursday Friel’s triple still led but had completed all their games while McCallum’s triple were level on points with them with a game to play against Brian Holman’s triple. A draw would have been enough to see McCallum snatch the semi-final place but a surprise 9-4 defeat sent them crashing out. The Blue Group was incredibly tight throughout. By Tuesday’s close Maureen Richards, Jan Davey & Jim Davey led on shot difference ahead of Morris Taylor, Trish Taylor & Terry Newby of Diss, Billie Barker, Keith Baker & Melvyn Barker of Wymondham & Bradwell and Gwen Brown, Richard Brown & Colin Hadler. By Wednesday’s close Jim Davey still led on shot difference but now from Thelma Price, Paul Whitcombe & John Price and Colin Hadler. Jim Davey’s triple held on to win the group on the last day one point ahead of triples skipped by Terry Newby, Colin Hadler, John Price & Maureen Fyson. In the Green Group Elaine Oatway, David Chadwick & Bob Oatway of First Bus swept to four straight wins on the opening day to top the group with Roy Toms, Tony Drew & Alan Clarke one point behind. Wednesday though was a different story as Oatway’s triple collected just one win to drop to third while Clarke’s triple moved top of the group with Alice Payne & Geoff Payne of Saxlingham, playing with John Jarvis of Thorpe Marriott, moved second. By the end of the next day’s play though Alan Clarke’s triple had moved three points clear to win the Green Group outright with Geoff Payne’s triple three points behind in second place. In the Black Group it was group favourites Anne Baker of Bradwell and Derek & Margaret Barley of Carlton Colville who finished one point ahead of Brian Sayer, Sue Banner & Veronica Copland on Tuesday but Copland’s triple pressured Barley throughout pushing them all the way. By the finish of the group on Thursday afternoon Copland’s triple were still just one point behind Barley and can be delighted with their performance. Brenda Sizer, David Walker & Avril Walker of Windows were never far off the pace and finished third two points behind Copland’s triple.

In the semi-finals Margaret Barley’s triple then met Alan Clarke’s Kent triple and despite winning the opening end they eventually went down 11-6. The other semi-final was an all Kent affair with Tony Friel’s triple beating Jim Davey’s triple by just one shot after a terrific match. In the East Coast Triples Final Roy Toms, Tony Drew & Alan Clarke took a single on the first end against Pauline Friel, Peter Richards & Tony Friel in the all Kent encounter. That proved to be the only time they led as Tony Friel’s triple, with Peter Richards in great form at number two, took two shots on the second end and held a narrow lead throughout. Four shots on the penultimate end took them into a 10-4 lead and the two shots scored by Clarke’s triple on the last end proved just a consolation. In the third place play-off Maureen Richards, Jan Davey & Jim Davey beat Margaret Barley’s triple 9-8.
EAST COAST PAIRS - Paula McCallum wins again!

The East Coast Pairs saw defending champion Paula McCallum of Durham this year playing with Derrick Johnson of Easingwold, North Yorkshire. Paula again displayed great form throughout and they reached the East Coast Pairs final where they met surprise finalists David Chadwick of Norfolk Over 60’s and Keith Baker of Bradwell. Chadwick is still a relative newcomer to short mat bowls and is currently President of Wymondham Dell BC and still playing long mat while Baker certainly did not expect to reach this stage. The final was a superb match which went down to the last bowl of the final end. After David Chadwick had opened with two excellent bowls the Norfolk pair looked on their way to victory but Paula McCallum had other ideas. A great attacking forehand took the jack back to take shot. Keith Baker’s last bowl of the end looked likely to take shot until it fell away right at the end and this left McCallum holding one shot which would have forced an extra end. The feisty Durham skip though did not settle for this and she took on a dangerous & brave backhand shot with her last bowl. As it came down the mat it looked set to push in Baker’s wood and lose the match but she had played it to perfection and her bowl sent Baker’s rolling out of the head to earn three shots and a 7-5 win. The Third Place Play-off was won by Keith Buck & Bill Francis of Diss who led throughout beating Peter Richards & Tony Friel of Woodpeckers, Kent by 8-3. In the semi-finals Derrick Johnson & Paula McCallum had beaten Peter Richards & Tony Friel 10-6 while David Chadwick & Keith Baker had beat Keith Buck & Bill Francis of Diss 4-3 after a low scoring game was decided by an extra end. Pairs who narrowly missed out on a semi-final placing were Maureen Fyson & Maureen Bell, Joyce & Keith Hughes and Morris Taylor & Terry Newby.

Richard Beare, well known on TV for his past work as Master of Ceremonies at the World Snooker Championships at the Crucible and as Compere at the World Bowls at Potters, conducted an entertaining Presentation Ceremony with East Coast Week organiser Teresa Goldsmith that sent bowlers home with smiles on their faces. On behalf of the bowlers Richard Beare also presented Teresa & Selwyn Goldsmith with a generous gifts in appreciation of their work running the event. Anyone wishing to book for next year’s event, which begins on the 1st May, are asked to contact Teresa on 01603-403628 at the earliest opportunity as the event is expected to sell out early. For details please click on Potters May Break

                                                     EAST COAST TRIPLES

                   East Coast Triples Winners - Peter Richards and Pauline & Tony Friel with Richard Beare

                                      Runners-up  Alan Clarke, Tony Drew & Roy Toms with Richard Beare

             3rd Jim Davey, Maureen Richards, Jan Davey with Richard & Co-Organiser Selwyn Goldsmith

                                     4th - Anne Baker and Derek & Margaret Barley with Richard Beare
                                                           EAST COAST PAIRS

                                  Winners - Derrick Johnson & Paula McCallum with Richard Beare

                                Runners-up - Keith Baker & David Chadwick with Richard Beare

                                                           3rd - Bill Francis & Keith Buck

                                      4th - Peter Richards & Tony Friel with Richard Beare

       Richard Beare & his helpers present Teresa & Selwyn a generous gift from all the bowlers                                             
                                                                                                                       Posted 8-5-16

Cambs announce Fours Comp for June

Tony Hart of the Cambridgeshire SMBA has announced that a Fours Competition will take place at March IBC on Saturday 11th June 2016. Entry fees will be £26 per team and the competition will have a £100 prize for the winners. It will be open to all ESMBA affiliated bowlers. Details can be found by clicking on Cambs Events 

Halvergate win Norwich Cup

Halvergate lifted the Norwich Cup for the first time after making home advantage count against visitors Thorpe Marriott. With a four point lead from the first leg Thorpe Marriott needed to make a good start but their triples, who had performed heroically in both the first leg and against Kirby Bedon in the semi-finals, failed to maintain their momentum in the first session. Ryan Fox, Ray Lamb & Robbie Lamb overcame Bob McPherson’s triple 11-7 while Jackie Smith, Roy Walker & Simon Warnes stormed to a 13-2 win against John Jarvis’ triple on Halvergate’s tricky mat two. That left the teams level on points and so they remained after the pair’s first session. Sylvia Turner & Tony Turner put on a superb show of bowling as they outplayed Steven & David Lamb to win their game 10-3 to score Thorpe Marriott’s first win of the night. But on mat one David Knights & Keith Cooke were never in any trouble as they beat Kath Frost & Richard Perkins 13-2. Cooke has been on fire in recent weeks and again displayed the form that earned him an England call-up. Everyone knew that the penultimate session would prove vital and Halvergate knew they were close to their first ever Norwich Cup triumph as they won on both mats. Margaret McPherson, Ted Redwood & John Jarvis came so close to keeping the match level before going down by just one shot against Robbie Lamb’s triple but a 9-4 win for  Simon Warnes’ triple against John Jarvis brought the end in sight for Marriott’s cup dreams. In the last session Marriott needed to win both games and outscore Halvergate by 21 shots, realistically this was never going to be on the cards. Keith Cooke’s pair won 11-2 and David Lamb’s pair won 9-5 to give Halvergate a 14-2 win on the night and a 20-12 aggregate points win to lift  the cup. The Presentation Ceremony was conducted by Norfolk Chairman & Norwich Cup organiser Selwyn Goldsmith who congratulated both teams on reaching the final of Norfolk’s biggest cup competition.

                                                                                                              Posted 30-4-16  

Halvergate - Norwich Cup winners 

Thorpe Marriott - Norwich Cup Runners-up

Thorpe Marriott draw first blood in Norwich Cup Final

Thorpe Marriott will take a 10-6 lead into the second leg of the Norwich Cup Final tonight at Halvergate after another sparkling performance by their triples. Richard Perkins, Kath Frost & Marjorie Hall opened with a 9-7 win against Simon Warnes’ triple and followed up with a second half 9-3 win against Robbie Lamb. Sheila Redwood, Bob McPherson & John Jarvis beat Robbie Lamb 12-4 in the first half before adding an 8-5 win against Simon Warnes. Michael Savage & Keith Cooke kept Halvergate’s hopes alive with two wins of 12-4 & 17-3 which also earned their team a narrow 59-56 lead on shots.  

                                                                                                                                                 Posted 29-4-16

Hempnall lift Tens title for Syd

Hempnall are the new Tens League champions after beating Bob Carter 3-0 at their South Norfolk venue. Lewis Cranston, Jon Sparham & Chris Mann gave them a great start with a 20-8 win against Melvin Woods’ triple while Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye drew 12-12 against John Turner & Jason Woods. Simon Willies’ triple clawed back the twelve shot deficit beating Paul Baker’s triple 19-7 but the match and title were decided as Hempnall’s Roger Parker & Neil Davidson won their pairs game by 16-6 against Nigel Willard & Jamie Forster. Hempnall SMBC have dedicated the win to the memory of Syd Harman. Halvergate slipped to a 2-0 home defeat against Kirby Bedon with Jan Hewitt & Phil Watson beating Donna Lamb & Josh Baxter 15-8, Joan Costello, Jimmy Dye & Gerald Chilvers winning 16-12 against Mike Tate, Ray Lamb & Roy Walker and Wendy Tweed, Graham Tweed & Keith Thomas beating Robbie Lamb’s triple 16-15. In an otherwise less than average season for Kirby their home & away double against Halvergate proved to be a rare highlight.

                                                                                       Posted 28-4-16  

Horsford BC are City of Norwich champions again

Horsford BC have retained the City of Norwich League title finishing two points clear of second placed Thorpe Marriott. Horsford clinched the title with a 12-2 away win at County Council. Thorpe Marriott had put the defending champions under intense pressure beating them 11-3 and adding a 13-1 win against third placed Costessey but Horsford BC made sure of the top spot in their final match.


Jack Pye wins 2 Bowl Masters Plate Final

Jack Pye of Wymondham won the World Masters 2-Bowl Plate Final in Northern Ireland with a 7-4 victory over Michael Beattie. This followed a 12-3 semi-final win against Ryan Abraham and a 17-5 quarter-final win against Stephen Marks. Jack edged out Dom Reed of Essex for a place in the England team for the SMPT World Cup in August with Lee Toleman, Bronagh Toleman & Paul Pomeroy. It is believed that main sponsors Dales Sports are meeting Jack with a view to a possible sponsorship deal. The World 2-Bowl Masters title was won by Don McNamara who beat Aiden Corrigan after a tie-break. The Henselite World Masters title was won by Gary Burke who defeated Andrew Leckey 8-7 in the final. Eddie Crawford beat Gerard Moen to win the Plate while Jonas Hager beat Jonathan Payne to win the Shield.  

                                                                                                                                             Posted 24-4-16                     

Simon Willies stars in Bure Cup win for East Tuddenham

After suffering two Bure Cup Final defeats in successive years at the hands of Halvergate this time it was East Tuddenham’s turn to celebrate after a  superbly entertaining two leg final that went all the way to the wire. Halvergate started the first leg well winning both opening games as Keith Cooke’s triple won 7-2 and Simon Warnes’ triple won 9-1 but East Tuddenham dug deep and by the end Halvergate had a narrow 14-10 points lead to take into the second leg. Michael Tate, Roy Walker & Keith Cooke played a big part in this producing three wins for Halvergate. For East Tuddenham triples skipped by Simon Willies & John Jefferys both scored four points from six. In the second leg East Tuddenham were level after just one session as Chris Mann’s triple won 6-5 and Melvin Woods’ triple won 8-3. Halvergate were not going to surrender without a battle though and Jamie Forster and Robbie Lamb promptly restored their lead with wins of 7-4 & 6-4 respectively. The third session saw East Tuddenham reduce the points deficit again to 19-17 with Melvin Woods’ triple winning 9-1 while Chris Mann beat David Lamb 7-2. John Jefferys’ triple won 10-8 in the next session but Halvergate’s Robbie Lamb replied with a tight 4-3 win to keep his side two points ahead. In the penultimate session East Tuddenham finally made home advantage count with two big wins. Geraldine Potter, Gerald Potter & Chris Mann beat Mike Tate, Josh Baxter & Robbie Lamb 11-1 while Elaine Willies, Laura Hawksworth & John Jefferys beat Jackie Smith, Steven Lamb & Jason Woods 11-3. This left East Tuddenham 23-21 up on points with one session remaining. Lewis Cranston, Rob Cranston & Jamie Forster gave Halvergate hope with an 8-5 win against Melvin Woods’ triple but East Tuddenham won the cup as Chris Turner, John Turner & Simon Willies scored a narrow 5-4 win against David Lamb’s triple in a game that went down to the last bowl.

Bure Cup winners East Tuddenham

Carter knockout defending champions

Bob Carter are through to the final of Challenge cup after they overturned their first leg 13-7 defeat at Wymondham to win 15-5 at their Drayton venue. The first session singles were shared as Jack Pye beat Jason Woods 8-7 but Jamie Forster levelled for Carter beating Chris Mann 7-8. In the fours Carter then started to make ground with a 10-4 win for Sue Hunt, Nigel Willard, Robert Howlett and Melvin Woods against Pat Saunders, Roger Steele, Debbie Sparham and Mark Linsdell while Elaine Willies, Jean Woods, John Turner and Simon Willies beat Billie Barker, Andy Jackson, Melvyn Barker and Jon Sparham 10-8 which gave Carter an 8-2 first session win. The singles were again shared as Jack Pye won his second match of the night against Jamie Forster 11-6 but Chris Mann could not find a win but did come from 11-1 down to lose by 9-12 against Jason Woods to keep the shots close in what was a big session of fours to come. The Wymondham fours battled but came up just short in two tense match's which saw Simon Willie's block beat Mark Linsdell's four 7-3 and a 6-6 draw for Melvin Woods' four against Jon Sparham's rink was enough to send them through to the final where Hempnall await. 

                                                                                                                 Posted 23-4-16

Northants host Eastern England League Presentation Day

Northants hosted this season’s Eastern England Over 60’s League Presentation Day at their four mat Cosgrove venue. Northamptonshire, Cambridgeshire & Norfolk were all represented by sixteen bowlers who played in a friendly mixed triple competition which was won by Catherine Robbins of Northants, Lonnie Fyson of Cambridgeshire & Mike Boswell of Norfolk. Northants provided a nice buffet lunch for all who attended. Northants Over 60’s manager Eleanor Winters presented Norfolk Over 60’s organiser Teresa Goldsmith with the league trophy which Norfolk had won for the first time since 2005 after winning all their matches. It is the fourth time that Norfolk have finished as champions since the league was formed in 2001.   

                                                                                                                                                     Posted 23-4-16


Eleanor Winters Of Northants & Teresa Goldsmith of Norfolk

Catherine Robbins, Eleanor Winters, Mike Boswell & Lonnie Fyson

Norfolk Over 60s - Eastern England League Champions

Great efforts but no silverware for Norfolk in Nationals

As always the successful Norfolk bowlers from the County Championships headed for Derbyshire to compete in the National Championships with hope in their hearts but sadly there was to be no gold, or silverware for that matter, at the end of the rainbow this year. There was though some notable performances and with just a little of that famous “rub of the green” we might have had some interest in the final stage. On Thursday the four day’s bowling began with the National Singles. Bob Carter’s Jamie Forster is not an experienced singles player but put on a great performance reaching the quarter-finals. He qualified from his group in second place with three points and a +5 shot difference ahead of Hampshire’s Callum Goodman in a group where Adam Sultana of Essex made an early exit. Forster then beat Gavin Wood of East Sussex 10-5 in the last 32 before completing an 11-6 victory against Daniel Peach of Warwickshire. In the quarter-finals he faced Barry Hedges of Essex. A tight start saw Hedges edge into a 4-2 lead after four ends which became 7-2 after seven ends. Forster pulled a single back on the next end but Hedges increased his lead with a full-house and there was no way back for the Carter bowler. Jamie Forster can be proud of himself though and will be motivated by an excellent showing in the National Singles. Simon Warnes of Horsford BC qualified as runner-up in his group after beating David Gander of Bucks and Brian McGiven of Herts. But in the last 32 he found young North Yorks ace Danny Langdon too hot to handle as he was beaten 13-4. Norfolk Singles Champion Neil Davidson of Hempnall finished his group level on points with Chris Willies of West Mids and James Trott of Devon but was eliminated on shot difference. Wymondham’s Jon Sparham had three tight games in his group but lost them all. The National Singles Final was won by Jon Pitcher of West Mids who beat Gloucestershire’s Jake Atrill.

The National Pairs on Friday proved disappointing for Norfolk. Wymondham’s Mikey George & Jon Sparham finished third in Group 9 with a 9-3 win against a Dorset pair their only success. Halvergate’s Kevin Watson & Steven Lamb could only gain a 10-10 draw against a Cornwall pair in their group and also made an early exit. Wymondham’s Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye won Group 14 with wins against Somerset & Bucks pairs. In the last 32 stage they went down 14-4 against Surrey’s Del Jones and Richard Nicol. Norfolk Pairs Champions Kerry Greenacre of Haddiscoe & Selwyn Goldsmith of Kirby Bedon qualified as runner-up in Group 12. In the last 32 game they faced North Yorks young stars Ben Render & Danny Langdon who are making a name for themselves in the sport. The Norfolk pair got the better start but with one end to go they had fallen one shot behind. With the final bowl of the last scheduled end the Norfolk skip drew shot to force an extra end. The North Yorks pair ditched the jack with the opening bowl but there was just enough room to draw shot close to the ditch line. A backhand draw by the Norfolk skip just broke the ditch line by a couple of inches and the North Yorks pair were through and went on to claim the title beating Dorset’s Alex Clay & Sam Harvey 11-9 in the final.

In the National Fours on Saturday Wymondham’s Chris Mann, Debbie Sparham, Jack Pye & Jon Sparham, Norfolk Fours Champions, qualified as runners-up in their group. They scored a good 8-2 win against Hampshire’s Jason McLean in the last 32 before beating Ben Pay’s Hampshire rink 8-5 in the last 16. In the quarter-finals they played Stephen Proctor’s Cheshire rink and came so close to reaching the semi-finals before a running wood drove the jack along the ditch to where a Cheshire bowl was waiting. It was a fascinating final end with Chris Mann getting a toucher into the ditch leaving the jack just live a few inches away. Both Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye looked likely to trail the jack into the ditch to score the two shots they needed for victory but incredibly their woods just missed the jack as did efforts by Cheshire. Finally the fatal blow was struck by Cheshire as a running wood took the jack the opposite direction of where Chris Mann’s bowl was situated. The Cheshire rink went on to win the title beating Staffs in the final. Mikey George, Morgan Warnes, Jamie Forster & Neil Davidson went out at the group stages on shot difference. Nigel Willard, Jason Woods, John Turner & Melvin Woods won their group but lost 14-1 to Chris Hopkins’ Northants rink in the last 32 stage. Jill Watson, Teresa Goldsmith, Phil Watson & Selwyn Goldsmith qualified from their group but lost 7-3 against Chris Willies’ West Mids rink in their last 32 game.

The last day of the championships was on Sunday with the National Triples Championships being played. Norfolk Triples Champions Jamie Forster, Robbie Lamb & Jason Woods scored one win and one draw in their group but this was not enough to see them through. County Council’s Owen Cranston, Lewis Cranston & Rob Cranston qualified as runners-up in their group but came up against the strong Oxfordshire triple of Gareth Davies, Roger Wiggins & A.J Brown in the last 32 and lost 9-3. Kerry Greenacre, Keith Cooke & Selwyn Goldsmith qualified as runners-up in their group and faced Martin Simcock’s Staffs triple in the last 32. After a tremendous match they went into the last end drawing 5-5 but Staffs scored the vital shot on the final end to win 6-5. Nigel Willard, John Turner & Melvin Woods looked in great form in their group which they won. They then beat a Cornwall triple 9-7 in their last 32 game and romped to a 17-4 win against another Cornwall triple in the last 16. But their bid for the title sadly ended in the quarter-finals with an 8-3 defeat against Ben Pay’s Hampshire triple. The final was won by Barry Hedges, Adam Sultana & Matt Dillon of Essex who beat Cheshire’s Adam Smith, Simon White & Grant Soller.         

                                                                                                                                                               Posted 10-4-16

Wymondham make it to National Mixed Fours semis

Wymondham’s Debbie Pye, Debbie Sparham, Jack Pye & Jon Sparham got within touching distance of a National Mixed Fours Final in Derbyshire before losing against North Yorkshire’s Joyce Perry, Jayne Rudd, Danny Langdon & Ben Render in the semi-finals. The North Yorkshire rink went on to lift the title beating Malcolm Beard’s East Sussex rink in the final. Sparham’s rink defeated a Hampshire rink 8-7 in the Last 16 stage before beating Darren Stanford’s Hertfordshire four in the quarter-finals. Jenny Walker, Kerry Greenacre, Peter Walker & Selwyn Goldsmith were eliminated in the Last 16 stage. In the National Under 18’s Championships Halvergate’s Morgan Warnes reached the quarter-finals before losing to Alex Klay of Dorset. Morgan beat Benny Bass of Devon in the quarter-finals. Ryan Fox of Halvergate reached the Last 16 stage before losing a tight match 10-7 against Andrew Johns of Surrey. Owen Cranston of County Council failed to make the knock-out stages after finishing third in his group but went on to win the Plate Competition. This week sees Norfolk bowlers heading for Derbyshire again to compete in the National Singles on Thursday, the National Pairs on Friday, the National Fours on Saturday and the National Triples on Sunday.

Halvergate are making it look easy in the Bure League as they extended their incredible unbeaten streak. They won 6-4 at Thorpe Marriott where Simon Warnes won 27-6 and won 8-2 at home to Kirby Bedon with Keith Cooke winning 21-7. The battle for second place appears to be between East Tuddenham & Kirby Bedon yet again. Tuddenham won 8-2 at Woodbastwick where Geraldine Potter, Gerald Potter & Simon Willies won 15-10 and Kirby Bedon won 6-4 at Heroes where Teresa Goldsmith, Janice Hewitt & Selwyn Goldsmith won 26-4. In the City of Norwich League the leading two teams both collected maximum points. Heroes won 14-0 at Windows while Thorpe Marriott won 14-0 at Framingham Earl.

                                                                                                                                                         Posted 3-4-16

Wymondham still kings of the Breckland

Wymondham are Breckland League champions again after an 8-2 home win against Forncett made sure of the title. Jack Pye’s triple opened with a 20-16 win while Jon Sparham’s triple completed a perfect first half with a  21-14 win. Debbie Sparham’s triple added a 26-7 win but Forncett collected a consolation win courtesy of Peter Lock’s triple who beat Melvyn Barker 27-14.


Shock defeat for Horsford BC at Sprowston

A shock 14-0 defeat at Sprowston has damaged the title prospects of Horsford BC in the City of Norwich League while rivals Horsford Heroes took advantage with a 12-2 away win at Framingham Earl to move eleven points clear at the top. Thorpe Marriott are also piling on the pressure after a 14-0 maximum win at home to Jarrolds. Other results saw Costessey beat Deaf Sports 11-3 and Windows beat Taverham 12-2.


Hempnall eight points clear in Tens

Laura Hawksworth, Owen Cranston & Paul Baker won by 21-11 at Hevingham as Hempnall moved eight points clear at the top. Bernie Cudden, Rob Cranston & Chris Mann added an 18-10 win and Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye won 15-11 in the pairs as Hempnall earned a 3-0 away win.

                                                                                                                                                            Posted 26-3-16

Coastal double for the Owls

Following this weeks results Woodbastwick Owls can celebrate a Coastal League & Cup double after Bradwell Dynamos failed to collect enough points to keep their cup hopes alive. Despite winning at home to both Hemsby Harvesters & South Walsham by 12-6 the points dropped in those games, plus a 10-8 home defeat against Woodbastwick Eagles, cost the Dynamos any chance of challenging for the title. They will now need to collect 33 points from their remaining three games if they are to overtake the Eagles for the runners-up spot. Other results saw Hemsby Beachcombers beat Hemsby Harvesters 11-7 in a local derby while Bradwell Beacons were held to a 9-9 draw by visitors South Walsham. Bradwell Beacons scored a narrow 10-8 home win against Hemsby Beachcombers but the Beachcombers won 13-5 at home to South Walsham.  

Another twist in 3 horse Tens race

Bob Carter suffered their first Tens League defeat of the season when they went down 4-0 at Halvergate. A tight first half saw Halvergate’s Josh Baxter & David lamb beat Jamie Forster & Jason Woods 15-8 while Carter’s Sue Hunt, Steve Bridge & Rob Howlett beat Donna Lamb, Roy Walker & Steven Lamb 11-10 to cut the deficit to six shots. The second half belonged to Halvergate though as Michael Savage, Ray Lamb & Robbie Lamb inflicted a 20-4 defeat on Elaine Willies, Jean Woods & Simon Willies and David Knights & Keith Cooke beat Nigel Willard & John Turner 16-12. League leaders Hempnall will welcome the result that leaves them five points clear of Halvergate with a game in hand and six points clear of Bob Carter.  

Hempnall head South Norfolk League

Hempnall now look on course to win the South Norfolk League again after an 8-2 home win against Saxlingham and ten points being awarded to them when Wreningham conceded their home match against them. Saxlingham’s Geoff Payne triple stopped Hempnall picking up maximum points in their match but with no available dates at Wreningham’s venue that match was unable to be played. Connaught’s hopes of finishing in the top two places were not helped as they were held to a 5-5 draw at Saxlingham. Pat Meale, Mary Hobbs & Geoff Briggs beat Owen Secker’s triple 21-9 to save Saxlingham from defeat.

                                                                                                                                     Posted 24-3-16


   Hempnall ease into final while other semi is evenly poised
Hempnall completed a comfortable double over Deaf Sports in their second leg semi final in the Challenge Cup. After an 18-2 first leg win just a win and a draw was needed to secure their passage to the final. This was done by the first singles matches as Paul Baker beat John Jeffery 8-7 while Neil Davidson got revenge for his defeat at Hempnall by Laura Hawksworth winning by a big 20-1 scoreline this time for the "specialist". The fours proved strong for Deaf Sports in the first half as N. Tenekoon, R. Hall, J. Robertson and R. Thomas drew 8-8 with B. Cudden, M. Pearce, R. Harrowing and J. Cann. The home sides only win of the night came from G. Amos, C. Mohamed, R. Sutton and R. Amos as they beat Owen, Lewis and Rob Cranston skipped by Terry Newby 8-5. The second session saw Laura Hawksworth gain a 10-10 draw against Hempnall captain Paul Baker but John Jeffery suffered his second defeat of the night by 5-15 to Owen Cranston who replaced Neil Davidson. Clare Cranston came in place of her son Owen in the fours with Lewis, Rob and Terry as they drew 6-6 against R. Thomas' four while Joan Cann's rink produced a solid 7-5 win against Robin Amos' four to seal a good night for Hempnall. 
The first leg of the other semi final saw Wymondham produce a 13-7 win over Bob Carter in what was a very close tie. The singles saw Chris Mann in good form against Jamie Forster as he won 14-4 while Jack Pye won only four of the ten ends which was enough to see him beat Jason Woods 8-6. The fours match's were close throughout as Billie Barker, Andy Jackson, Melvyn Barker and Jon Sparham edged out Sue Hunt, Steve Bridge, Rob Howlett and Melvin Woods 7-5 while Pat Saunders, Roger Steele, Debbie Sparham and Mark Linsdell were held to a 5-5 draw against Jean Woods, Nigel Willard, Simon Willies and John Turner. This gave Wymondham the bonus points for shots in the first session by 34-20 giving them a 9-1 half time lead. The second session however saw the Carter singles turn it around as both were in fine form as Jason Woods beat Chris Mann 10-7 while Jamie Forster gave Carter a good shots advantage beating Jack Pye 12-6. Wymondham's fours replied again this time both with wins to give them hope in the second leg as Jon Sparham's four beat John Turner's four by 9-5 and a tense finish which saw Melvin Woods having to play his final wood to secure the overall shots for the second session saw his four go down by only 8-6 in the end giving Carter a 6-4 session win with the shots at 33-30 in their favour. Carter's second session gave them renewed hope after their opening first session and now the tie could go either way when the two teams meet again at Drayton in April! 
                                                                                                      Posted 23-3-16

 Wymondham win Dennis Moore Trophy

This year’s tournament was held on 13th March at Hingham, the morning session comprised of singles and fours whilst the afternoon session was comprised of pairs and triples. 8 singles playing in 2 leagues, winners of the leagues were league 1, Jon Sparham from Wymondham, league 2 John Winup from Connaught B. Jon Sparham opened the final with a 3 and a single, John Winup scored a two on end 3, but Jon immediately hit back with a 4 on end 4 to lead 8-2, John responded well by taking 3 on the next end but Jon took the next 3 ends by a 2 and two singles to lead 12-5 with 2 ends to play. In an attempt to ditch the jack Jon took it off the side and under the competition rules it was 1 shot away, Jon took the last end to win 15-6. There were 9 fours played in a league, each team playing 4 games after which there were 4 teams on 6 points, Harling Unicorns +7, Hingham +7 , Runners up Connaught A +19, Mike Parsons, Bill Adcock, Steve Barclay and Steve Hall and Winners Wymondham +31, Hayley Stratton, Mary Fisher, Andrew Jackson and Jack Pye. There were 9 teams in each of the pairs and triples playing 4 games each  after which in the pairs there were two teams on 6 points runners up Wymondham, Pat Saunders and Debbie Sparham +21 and the winners Connaught A Tyrone Musk and Sylvia Parsons +26. In the triples The runners-up on 6 points were Connaught B, Peter Hambling, Malcolm Southgate and Peter King. The winners on 7 points were Banham C. Smith, Bill Francis and Will Hoggan.The Dennis Moore trophy for overall shots for was won by Wymondham with 148 and Runners up Connaught A with 126. Thanks to Hingham for hosting, to all who helped putting the equipment out and away, Steve Hall and Cynthia Powell for hovering the mats, Wendy and Pam for the refreshments and to Bob Oatway for organising.

                                                                                                         Posted 22-3-16

                                     Jon Sparham - winner of the singles pictured at a previous event

Halvergate pull clear in Bure

Halvergate pulled fourteen points clear in the Bure League after a maximum 10-0 home win against Hevingham. Jason Woods’ triple opened with a 20-7 win against Aleck Haynes while Simon Warnes weighed in by beating Maurice Kemp 19-7. After the break David Lamb’s triple beat David Sharpe 17-9 and Robbie Lamb beat Alan Bunn 19-7. In their previous match Halvergate had won 8-2 at Coltishall. East Tuddenham have not given up the chase yet though and they won 10-0 at Horsford Heroes with Geraldine Potter, Gerald Potter & Simon Willies scoring the biggest win beating Mark “The Marvel” Tuttle 14-10.  Thorpe Marriott won 6-4 at Horsford BC with Trevor Pinchen’s triple winning 20-9. Woodbastwick recorded a good 8-2 home win against Hevingham with Lianne Mills beating Rex Cox 16-11.

                                                                                                       Posted 20-3-16


Wymondham win 5 Pairs Final

Wymondham cruised to victory in the final of the 5 Pairs event at Shropham. After two tight opening games left Connaught with a one shot lead Wymondham took control and by the end were out of site of their rivals. A massive 18-1 win for Mark Linsdell & Jack Pye against Owen Secker & Chris Musk, and a 14-2 win for Andrew Jackson & Melvyn Barker against Steve Hall & Elaine Oatway, demonstrated Wymondham’s ability to play Shropham’s fast mat better than Connaught.

                                                                                                                                       Posted 18-3-16

Norfolk Over 60’s are Eastern England League Champions

Norfolk Over 60s completed their Eastern England League season with a 26-24 home win against Northants to win the title for the first time in several years. The result completed a perfect season for the team who won all their matches to win the league by a mile. Jenny Walker, Sue Fox & Mike Boswell won twice and drew their other game as did Margaret Reynolds, Malcolm Reynolds & Colin Coman. Norfolk Over 60’s organiser Teresa Goldsmith was delighted for the players who completed home and away wins against both Northants & Cambridgeshire.

Norfolk Over 60's - Eastern England League champions

Norfolk Over 60's organiser Teresa Goldsmith with Northants' Elenore Winters

It’s that Mann again!

Mann beats Lamb in cracking final

Chris Mann of East Tuddenham is the new Bure Singles Champion after beating Halvergate’s David Lamb in an excellent final at Kirby Bedon that went down to the last wood. Chris Mann started the game well drawing in his woods on the opening end and putting David Lamb under intense pressure. With his last wood though Lamb finally found his weight and drew in to take shot. Mann continued to impress on the second end taking two shots and a 2-1 lead. Lamb came close to taking shot with his final wood on the third end but it fell away from the jack leaving Mann with a 3-1 lead. The fourth end followed the same pattern with Mann holding two shots before another superb last wood by Lamb took shot. Chris Mann continued to outdraw Lamb on the fifth end but once again Lamb produced a good last bowl to cut the damage to just one shot. On the sixth end Mann drew in three good woods before an accurate attacking bowl by Lamb took shot cutting the deficit to just one shot. A cagey seventh end finished with David Lamb levelling the game at 4-4. Lamb was short with his opening bowl on the next end and Mann took advantage drawing around it and on to the jack. Lamb managed to open up the end but Mann drew in a perfect wood just behind the jack. David Lamb then conjured up a superb backhand to take shot and a firing shot by Mann failed to change anything and Lamb took the lead for the first time in this low scoring final by 5-4. A forcing bowl by Mann earned him a shot on the penultimate end to level the game at 5-5. Mann was disappointed to drop about eighteen inches short of the jack with his opening bowl while Lamb drew around it onto the jack. Mann resorted to weight with his second bowl but missed while Lamb drew in a back wood. Mann again failed to retrieve the situation with his third bowl while Lamb drew yet another back wood in. A tremendous last wood by Mann took shot leaving Lamb with one wood left to play. Lamb went for the jack and got it but used too much weight cutting the jack off the side of the mat forcing a replay of the end. A tight replayed end saw Lamb holding shot just off the jack with Mann’s wood two inches behind when Chris Mann stepped up to play his last bowl. A perfectly paced shot left Mann holding shot with just David Lamb’s last bowl to be played. Lamb attacked on his backhand and was so close to success as it brushed Mann’s bowl but left it in place and Chris Mann was the new Bure Singles champion. In an all East Tuddenham semi-final Chris Mann beat John Turner 11-4 and got revenge for his defeat in last season’s final. In the other semi-final David Lamb beat East Tuddenham’s Melvin Woods 9-7.

Pairs final goes down to last wood

Halvergate’s Morgan Warnes & Keith Cooke lifted the Bure Pairs title at Hevingham after a hard fought final against Thorpe Marriott’s Jenny Walker & Richard Perkins. After the Thorpe Marriott pair took a single on the opening end the Halvergate pairing immediately replied with four shots on the second end to establish an early lead. Not to be outdone Richard Perkins produced two superb woods on the next end to close the gap to 4-3. Another single followed for Warnes & Cooke but again Walker & Perkins dug deep to level the game on the fifth end as they took two shots. Once again though it was the Halvergate pair who moved ahead with three shots on the next end to edge themselves nearer the title. On the penultimate end the Thorpe Marriott pair kept their hopes alive with a single to go into the last end just two shots behind. Excellent bowls by Jenny Walker and Richard Perkins left them holding two shots but Cooke had been deadly on his backhand all night and again drew in a good second wood to ensure an 8-7 win. In the semi-finals both matches were tight with Warnes & Cooke beating Woodbastwick’s Norma & Peter Jablonowski 7-6 and Walker & Perkins beating fellow Thorpe Marriott pair Sylvia & Tony Turner by the same score-line.

Now Mann skips triples winners

Mother & son Geraldine and Gerald Potter of East Tuddenham, skipped by Chris “The Blazer” Mann, lifted the Bure Triples title at Horsford BC beating Window’s Brenda Sizer, Diane Boswell & Mike Boswell in a final that was decided on the last end. The neutrally positioned mat for any final at this venue always presents challenges to the finalists and this year was no exception. But it was former European Open champion Chris Mann who always looked likely to be the deciding factor in this close match and so it proved to be as he produced two class woods on the final end to clinch a 9-8 win for his triple. Going into the penultimate end Mann’s triple led 7-5 and were holding shot until Mike Boswell’s final bowl. He appeared to be too tight with his forehand attempt but glanced off a short wood, hitting the jack and taking it across the mat to score three shots. This left Windows with an 8-7 lead to take into the last end and after Brenda Sizer & Diane Boswell had drawn in their woods an upset looked on the cards. East Tuddenham’s skip Chris Mann though produced two perfect woods to add the triples title to the singles title he had already collected. In the semi-final Chris Mann’s triple had defeated defending champions Chrissie Turner, Melvin Woods & John Turner 6-5 while Mike Boswell’s triple had won by 13-4 against Richard Perkins, Mandy Marshall & Tony Turner of Thorpe Marriott.  


                                                                                                                                       Posted 19-3-16

                                                    Chris Mann - Bure Singles Champion
                       Gerald Potter, Geraldine Potter & Chris Mann - Bure Triples Champions

                                       Keith Cooke & Morgan Warnes - Bure Pairs Champions

Halvergate on course for Bure title

Halvergate are well on their way to retaining the Bure League title after a 10-0 home win against Horsford Heroes. David Lamb’s triple led the way beating Mark Tuttle 21-10 while Jason Woods’ triple added a 21-12 win against Chris Woodhouse. Halvergate are just four points behind league leaders Kirby Bedon with two games in hand. Kirby Bedon also won 10-0 at home against Thorpe Marriott with Gerald Chilvers’ triple beating Richard Perkins 17-11. East Tuddenham’s title hopes took another blow at Coltishall where they were beaten 8-2. Peter Barnett’s triple did the most damage beating Simon Willies’ triple 19-11 while Vic “Quiet Man” Woods beat John Turner 15-12 and Les Harman beat Melvin Woods 14-11. John Jefferys’ triple earned East Tuddenham their two points beating John Aggas 15-12.Coltishall also won 8-2 at Horsford BC with Margaret Harman’s triple winning 21-3. Windows suffered an 8-2 defeat at Woodbastwick where Willie Jefferies’ triple won 22-8. Wymondham lost their first Breckland League match of the season going down 6-4 at Connaught “A” but are still hot favourites to win the title yet again. A 22-8 win for Mike Parsons, Ty Musk & Bob Oatway against Irma Lowe, Andy Jackson & Jack Pye was the crucial result that earned the bonus points. Connaught “A” also won 10-0 at home to Watton while third placed Carleton Rode won 6-4 at Forncett. In the South Norfolk League Hempnall won at Hingham but only by 6-4. Paul Baker’s triple did major damage for the visitors beating Graham Tweed’s triple 28-3. At this time of the season it is normal to see Hempnall lead the table by quite a margin but this season Diss hold a nine point lead over Hempnall. Diss recorded a 10-0 home win against Wreningham, with Karl Newby winning 27-5, and beat Saxlingham 7-3 with Keith Buck & Terry Newby earning nine shot wins. Hempnall do still have two games in hand though over the leaders. City of Norwich League leaders Horsford BC won 14-0 at home to British Rail. The two teams behind them met with County Council winning a tight match 10-4 at Horsford Heroes. Jarrolds suffered a 12-2 home defeat at the hands of Horsford Heroes while fourth placed Costessey beat British Rail 12-2, In the City Shield semi-finals Horsford BC beat Thorpe Marriott 9-7 while Horsford Heroes beat Costessey 10-2. Tens League title chasing Bob Carter took maximum points at home to Kirby Bedon with Sue Hunt, Steve Bridge & Melvin Woods beating Gerald Chilvers’ triple 34-3. Halvergate’s unbeaten record came to an end at Kirby Bedon despite the visitors winning three of the four games. A 16-5 win for Teresa & Selwyn Goldsmith against Jackie Smith & England’s David Lamb proved enough to give Kirby Bedon a 2-0 home win.

                                                                                                                 Posted 11-3-16

Norfolk are I.C.C Premier Champions!

Norfolk Premier are England Inter-County Champions after another superb performance saw them crush Essex Premier 24-8 with a session to spare in the final at Daventry. Norfolk, unbeaten all season, lifted the title that has eluded them for the last twenty years and did it in style with their supporters loudly cheering them on from the side-lines. It proved to be a tight first session that was drawn with both teams winning a singles and a pairs game each. Norfolk’s wins came from Hempnall’s Neil Davidson with a 16-10 win against England’s Barry Hedges and the pairing of Halvergate’s David Lamb & Wymondham’s Jack Pye who came from behind to win 14-9 after winning four of the last five ends. Norfolk continued to pressure Essex when the triples & fours played their opening games. Haddiscoe’s Kerry Greenacre, Wymondham’s Debbie Sparham & Halvergate’s Keith Cooke won a tight triples game 11-9. Both Norfolk rinks won to move Norfolk 10-6 up on points at the interval with Owen Cranston, Phil Watson, Nigel Willard & Selwyn Goldsmith beating former England Singles champion Craig Burgess and his rink by 10-8 while Laura Hawksworth, Lewis Cranston, Rob Cranston & Bob Oatway beat Anthony Fautley’s rink 11-10. Essex needed to make inroads on Norfolk’s lead when the singles & pairs returned to the mats but instead found out that there was no-way back as Norfolk won on all four mats. Chris Mann, still recovering from a recent operation, was in cruise control as he inflicted a 19-8 defeat on Barry Hedges while Neil Davidson made it two wins from two games beating Adam Sultana 13-11. David Lamb & Jack Pye added their second pairs win of the day by 17-11 and with Horsford’s Simon Warnes and captain Jon Sparham of Wymondham winning 11-10 it was all over as Norfolk celebrated a famous victory. Player-Manager Selwyn Goldsmith commented afterwards that every Norfolk player was a hero on the day and that the incredible team spirit was a major factor in their success. Norfolk will now go forward to take part in the annual top team event between the champions of Ireland, Wales and England that will be hosted by Wales in December.     

Norfolk Premier - new England I.C.C Premier Champions!

Norfolk captain Jon Sparham, ESMBA President George Clarke & Norfolk Manager Selwyn Goldsmith

Norfolk Player-Manager Selwyn Goldsmith enjoying the moment

Two wins for Jack Pye & David Lamb played a crucial part

Phil Watson, Nigel Willard, Selwyn Goldsmith & Owen Cranston

                                         Laura Hawksworth, Bob Oatway, Rob Cranston & Lewis Cranston

                                                            Jon Sparham & Simon Warnes

Halvergate and Marriott reach Norwich Cup Final

Halvergate & Thorpe Marriott will contest this season’s Norwich Cup Final after the semi-finals were completed this week. Halvergate visited Wymondham for the second leg of their semi-final tie protecting an 11-5 points lead from the first leg. A stubborn first half performance by Halvergate saw them share the points to keep the pressure on Wymondham. David Knights, Steven Lamb & Simon Warnes won a low scoring game by 5-3 against Mikey George, Mark Linsdell & Chris Mann while Morgan Warnes & Keith Cooke beat Roger Steele & Jack Pye 11-4. Wymondham wins came from Andrew Jackson & Jon Sparham who beat Robin Amos & David Lamb 13-4 while Pat Saunders, Melvyn Barker & Debbie Sparham beat Michael Savage, Ray Lamb & Robbie Lamb 10-7. Wymondham started the second half in fine form to cut the deficit to just two points with Chris Mann’s triple beating Robbie Lamb’s triple 9-4 and Debbie Sparham’s triple beating Simon Warnes by 11-6. The all important last session of pairs was to decide the match with Wymondham needing to win both games to be sure of reaching the final. Roger Steele & Jack Pye delivered the first win beating Robin Amos & David Lamb 9-4 but Halvergate’s heroes were England internationals Morgan Warnes & Keith Cooke who took their team over the finishing line with an impressive 11-2 win against Andrew Jackson & Jon Sparham. In the other semi-final Thorpe Marriott entertained Kirby Bedon in the first leg and their triples earned them a valuable four point lead to take to Kirby Bedon for the second leg. Margaret McPherson, Bob McPherson & Marjorie Hall beat Phil Watson’s triple 11-7 and Gerald Chilvers’ triple by 6-4 while Sheila Redwood, Kath Frost & George Clarke beat Phil Watson 8-7 and drew 5-5 against Gerald Chilvers. Kirby Bedon had the better of Marriott in the pairs with Teresa & Selwyn Goldsmith beating Jenny Walker & John Jarvis 8-5 and drawing 6-6 with Sylvia & Tony Turner while Carol & John Aggas beat Walker & Jarvis 8-5 but lost by one shot to the Turners. Kirby Bedon’s hopes of a good start in the second leg on their own mats were shattered as their triples both went down in the first session. Marriott’s Janet Pinchen, Ted Redwood & John Jarvis beat Joan Costello, Jimmy Dye & Gerald Chilvers 10-6 while Sheila Redwood, Trevor Pinchen & Richard Perkins beat Jill Watson, Jan Hewitt & Phil Watson by an impressive 11-2 margin to open up an eight point lead. Kirby’s pairs kept the home side in the match winning both second session games with Teresa & Selwyn Goldsmith beating Kath Frost & George Clarke 12-1 and Carol & John Aggas beating Sylvia & Tony Turner 10-3 to cut the deficit to four points again. Kirby’s apparent inability to match Marriott’s triples continued though in the penultimate session as John Jarvis beat Phil Watson 9-5 and Richard Perkins beat Gerald Chilvers 7-4 to secure a place in the final for Thorpe Marriott against Halvergate. The stats will show that Thorpe Marriott’s points tally of fifteen out of sixteen in the triples was the key to their success in this encounter.

                                                                                                               Posted 4-3-16


Owls flying high

A 15-3 home win against Martham and a 14-4 home win against Hemsby Harvesters have earned Woodbastwick Owls a 41 point lead in the Coastal Cup table over second placed Woodbastwick Eagles. The Eagles also had a winning week visiting Hemsby Harvesters where they collected a 12-6 win. Other results saw South Walsham record a maximum 18-0 home win against Martham but then lose 11-7 at home to Hemsby Harvesters. Hemsby Beachcombers won 14-4 at home to Bradwell Beacons and Bradwell Dynamos won 12-6 at Hemsby Harvesters.

                                                                                                                                       Posted 1-3-16

Hempnall firm favourites for final

Hempnall look almost certainties for the challenge cup final after they cruised to an 18-2 points win at home to Deaf Sports in their semi final first leg. Both home singles produced wins as Neil Davidson beat Robin Amos 15-3 while Roger Parker beat Laura Hawksworth 8-3. Hempnall made it a perfect first session as both fours won as Owen, Lewis and Rob Cranston with Paul Baker beat G. Amos, J. Robertson, R. Thomas and R. Sutton 13-3 while Bernie Cudden, Mike Pearce, Richard Harrowing and Joan Cann beat K. Atkins, R. Hall, C. Mohammed and J. Jeffery 8-5 to seal a 10-0 first half win. Second session saw the singles shared as Roger Parker beat Robin Amos 11-7 but a 9-8 win for Laura Hawksworth against four time county singles champion Neil Davidson shows the step up in opposition this season is paying off for the young lady. However both Hempnall fours finished off with two wins a piece on the night as Paul Baker's four beat John Jeffery's four 16-6 while Joan Cann's four beat Richard Sutton's four 7-3. Deaf Sports now have a big task to overturn such a big defeat but their home venue can pose difficulties for opposition as Hingham found out in the previous round. 

Bure, Tens & City League action

Bure League

Despite Halvergate remaining favourites to retain the Bure League title both East Tuddenham & Kirby Bedon continue to press their claims. Kirby Bedon entertained East Tuddenham and looked on course to win after a good first half but it all went downhill later on. Joan Costello, Jan Hewitt & Selwyn Goldsmith beat Madge Meachen, Laura Hawksworth & Melvin Woods 14-9 while Jill Watson, Melvyn Barker & Phil Watson staged a great comeback to win 15-12 against Geraldine Potter, Gerald Potter & Nigel Willard after Barker moved to skip changing playing positions with Watson. After the break though the home side suffered a meltdown as East Tuddenham’s Gillian Amos, Robin Amos & John Jeffrey romped to a 23-4 win against Peter Johnson, Jimmy Dye and home captain Gerald Chilvers while Chrissie Turner, John Turner & Rob Howlett enjoyed a comfortable 17-7 win against Billie Barker, Shirley Brown & Joe Brown to clinch a 6-4 away win. East Tuddenham recorded an easy 10-0 home win against Windows with Laura Hawksworth, Gerald Potter & Chris Mann beating Russell Daynes’ triple 32-2 while Albert Palgrave, Simon Willies & John Turner beat Mike Boswell’s triple 22-4. Kirby Bedon won 10-0 at Horsford BC with Peter Johnson, Jan Hewitt & Selwyn Goldsmith beating Dennis Seaton’s triple 24-3 and Joan Costello, Jimmy Dye & Gerald Chilvers winning 22-5 against Tim Blackman. Hevingham won a close match 6-4 at Coltishall with Maurice Kemp’s triple win of 19-3 against Malcolm Reynolds made sure of the match points. Hevingham also won by 8-2  at home to Horsford Heroes with Janet Kemp, Pat Hall & Alick Haynes leading the way winning 16-6. Horsford BC won their local derby by 8-2 against Horsford Heroes with Dot Loftus, Cathy Fiddy & Tim Flack winning their game by 25-6.

Tens League

In the Tens League Halvergate won 4-0 at Coltishall with Morgan Warnes & Keith Cooke beating Carol Aggas & Margaret Harman 26-7 while Simon Warnes’ triple won 16-6 against Les Harman’s triple. Hempnall made it eight wins from eight games beating Hevingham 4-0. Bernie Cudden, Joan Cann & Paul Baker were in fine form winning 32-3 against Alan Bunn’s triple. Kirby Bedon also took all four points at home to Hevingham with Joan Costello, Shirley Brown & Joe Brown beating Alan Bunn’s triple 27-6 and Jan Hewitt & Selwyn Goldsmith beating Pat Williamson & Maurice Kemp 22-6 in the pairs.

City of Norwich League

With two games in hand on table toppers Horsford BC it is Thorpe Marriott who probably have the best chance of anyone to stop them claiming the title again. Although Thorpe Marriott won 10-4 at home to Sprowston they will be disappointed to have dropped four points on their own mats. County Council’s 14-0 home win against Sprowston puts them into second place. Deaf Sports are still in the title race and a 12-2 away win at Taverham and another 12-2 win at home to Horsford Heroes will boost their confidence. First Bus won 10-4 at Jarrolds in a mid table clash while Windows lost 12-2 at British Rail in a basement battle.


                                                                                                                                           Posted 28-2-16

Coach booked for I.C.C Final in Daventry

Following Norfolk’s thrilling 24-16 Inter-County Championship semi-final win against Cheshire Premier plans are now in place for the much anticipated final against Essex Premier at Daventry Indoor Bowls Club on Sunday 6th March. A coach has been arranged for Norfolk’s big day so that other squad members, family & supporters will be able to book seats to support Norfolk Premier in their attempt to lift a title that they last won twenty years ago. At the beginning of the season not many would have predicted that two teams from the old Eastern Region would reach the final of the Inter-County Championships. But after eight years of total domination by Cheshire Premier, followed by the surprise win of Hampshire Premier last season, it is Norfolk Premier & Essex Premier who will share the stage to battle for the biggest I.C.C prize on the short mat calendar. Anyone who wishes to book a place on the coach should contact Selwyn Goldsmith to reserve their seat. The cost will be £5 per person to help offset the cost of hiring the coach. Seats will be reserved on a first come first served basis. The coach will pick up all passengers at the bus-stop near Attleborough Queens Square car-park and will leave at 6.55am. As normal at Daventry I.B.C only food purchased at the venue can be consumed inside the premises. Also taking place on the day is the I.C.C “A” Team Final between Kent “A” & Somerset “A”. Kent “A” reached the final after defeating Cambridgeshire 26-14 in the semi-finals while Somerset “A” won a tight match against North Yorkshire by 21-19. Both Consolation Finals will also be played with Northants Premier facing Herefordshire in the I.C.C Premier Consolation Final and London playing Shropshire in the I.C.C “A” Team Consolation Final. 

                                                                                                                 Posted 24-2-16

Norfolk Premier defeat Cheshire to reach I.C.C Final

A fantastic fighting performance by Norfolk Premier saw them defeat eight time champions Cheshire Premier in a tense semi-final at Daventry IBC that threatened to boil over on more than one occasion. Norfolk had not taken an easy route to the semi-finals having beaten defending champions Hampshire in the quarter-finals and West Sussex in the preliminary round but these results, and a home and away double against West Mids in the group stages, have instilled a spirit in the team not seen since twenty years ago when they went on to win the title for the only time. The first session of singles & pairs was shared with Wymondham’s Chris Mann beating Steve Proctor 18-9 and Hempnall’s Neil Davidson beating Grant Sollar 12-11. Cheshire got the better of both pairs games leaving the match level at 4-4 but even those games produced their moments of drama. The second session was also drawn as Carter’s Jamie Forster, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods beat Noel Burrows’ triple 13-6 and Owen Cranston, Phil Watson, Nigel Willard & Selwyn Goldsmith beat Robert Mellor’s rink 10-7. Back came the singles & pairs for the third session and Chris Mann fought back from 10-4 down to beat Grant Sollar 14-13, an incredible feat for a young man that was so determined he ignored medical advice not to play after being in hospital three days earlier. In the pairs David Lamb & Jack Pye were involved in a hard battle against John Manley’s pair. Trailing 5-1 after four ends they fought back to lead after ten ends before falling behind again. But Lamb & Pye dug deep to win the last three ends to clinch a 14-12 win. Another great battle saw Simon Warnes & Jon Sparham also win 14-12 after trailing 11-9 with four ends to go. With the scores level on points the last session of triples & fours was to decide the match and Norfolk Premier sealed their place in the final by winning on all four mats but not after four tense games. Melvin Woods’ triple were level with two ends to go before scoring singles on the last two ends for an 11-9 win. Keith Cooke & Debbie Sparham changed playing positions to great effect on their way to a 10-9 win. Selwyn Goldsmith’s rink held on to win their second game of the match by one shot and Laura Hawksworth, Lewis Cranston, Rob Cranston & Bob Oatway also won by one shot to give Norfolk Premier a 24-16 points win. After the match Player-Manager Selwyn Goldsmith was full of praise for every player in the Norfolk team. He said that they all played their part in a victory that will probably come as a surprise for many who doubted if Norfolk Premier were strong enough to compete against a team who blew them away when they last met at this stage of the competition.In the final they will face Essex Premier who beat Devon Premier 22-18 in the other semi-final.


Weakened Wymondham team keep cup hopes alive

Despite fielding a weakened team Wymondham kept their Norwich Cup hopes alive going down 11-5 at Halvergate in the first leg of their semi-final clash. With, among others, Jon Sparham, Chris Mann & Brian Saunders all missing from the Breckland League giants team it was always going to be a struggle for the Norwich Cup holders away to Bure League champions Halvergate. The home side started off with two wins in the opening triples session with David Lamb’s triple beating Debbie Sparham’s triple 6-4 after taking two shots on the final end while Robbie Lamb’s triple beat Irma Lowe, Derek Sheldrake & Andrew Jackson 12-5. Wymondham’s first win of the night followed in the pairs session as Roger Steele & Jack Pye scored a 15-6 win against Morgan & Simon Warnes but David Knights & Keith Cooke kept up the pressure with a 13-6 Halvergate win against Billie & Melvyn Barker who had led 6-0 early on before falling away. The second triples session was shared as Pat Saunders, Terry Newby & Debbie Sparham beat Robbie Lamb’s Halvergate triple 7-6 with home skip David Lamb beating Andrew Jackson’s triple 18-0. Morgan & Simon Warnes won their final game by 10-6 against the Barkers while Knights & Cooke drew 6-6 with Steele & Pye. Wymondham will hope to field a full strength side for the second leg at home which should prove an interesting encounter.


Big win for Bure favourites Halvergate

Visitors Horsford BC had no answer to the questions posed by Bure League champions Halvergate as they succumbed to a 10-0 maximum defeat, 131-10 on shots, on their visit to Halvergate’s Upton venue. David Knights, Morgan Warnes & Simon Warnes reeled off a huge 40-1 win, Keith Cooke’s triple won 32-2, Robbie Lamb’s triple won 31-4 and David Lamb’s triple won 28-3 in a one-sided encounter.  

                                                                                                                                              Posted 21-2-16

Norfolk Over 60’s close in on title

A superb 34-16 home win for Norfolk in the Eastern England Over 60’s League against Cambridgeshire saw them almost over the finishing line in the title race. The result leaves them 42 points clear of Northants Over 60s who Norfolk will play at Hingham Sports & Social Club in the final match of the season. Two of the eight Norfolk triples scored maximum points with Wendy Tweed, Graham Tweed & Keith Thomas of Hingham SMBC winning by 16-4, 7-5 & 10-8 and Billie Barker of Wymondham, John Jarvis of Thorpe Marriott & Selwyn Goldsmith of Kirby Bedon winning by 11-8, 16-3 & 7-4. The only Cambs triple to finish with maximum points was Marianne Taylor, Lonnie Fyson & Maureen Fyson who won by 14-7, 12-5 & 11-7. Norfolk will entertain Northants on 17-3-16 and need to score just five points from fifty to clinch the title. The Presentation Day this year will be hosted by Northants at Cosgrove on 21-4-16.

                                                                                                          Posted 18-2-16

Cambs players line-up at Hingham

Keith Thomas, Wendy Tweed & Graham Tweed - maximum points

John Jarvis, Billie Barker & Selwyn Goldsmith - maximum points

                                  Norfolk Over 60s Organiser Teresa Goldsmith welcomes Cambs

Derek Barley gets revenge

Derek Barley's Select got revenge for their defeat at the hands of Norfolk Over 60's at Hingham last time around when they comfortably won the return fixture at Carlton Colville. The mats at Carlton again proved tricky to master for the Norfolk players but everyone, as always, enjoyed a great day in Suffolk where the home side provided a tasty lunch and teas & coffees all day for their visitors from Norfolk. More photos of the day can be viewed on the Over 60s page of this site by clicking Photo Gallery

Line up before the Derek Barley's Select v Norfolk Over 60's match

Eddie Costello, Joan Costello & Gerald Chilvers - Norfolk's top triple with three wins out of three

Pye pairing are City Pairs champions

Mother & son Debbie & Jack Pye of Costessey teamed up to lift the City of Norwich League Pairs Championship title played at Sprowston’s venue in Blue Boar Lane. The Costessey pair, both Norfolk County Squad players, beat Jane James & Mark “The Marvel” Tuttle of Horsford Heroes in the quarter-finals with an end to spare. In the semi-finals they faced Bernard & Steven Andrews of Jarrolds and once again won the game with an end to spare. In the final they played Veronica Copland & Karl Bunn of Framingham Earl and ran out 12-1 winners.

                                                      Debbie & Jack Pye - City League Pairs winners

Thorpe Marriott edge closer

Only Thorpe Marriott look to have a realistic chance of catching Horsford BC in the City of Norwich League and their chances were improved with a 10-4 away win at Costessey. This leaves them 33 points behind with two games in hand but in a league that still awards fourteen points a game they could be in touching distance of Horsford if they can produce a couple of big wins. Sprowston continue to improve their position with two more wins and its easy to forget that this was a club that was close to folding at the beginning of the season. Their last two league games at home saw them defeat British Rail by 10-4 and Horsford Heroes by 12-2. Taverham are still bottom of the table and becoming totally detached from the rest. They suffered two more 14-0 defeats at both County Council and Jarrolds and have only one win to show from seventeen matches. Other games saw First Bus win 8-6 at Windows, courtesy of a 42-41 shots win, and a 10-4 home win for British Rail against Deaf Sports. Woodbastwick Owls are flying high in the Coastal Cup table following a couple of huge 16-2 wins. They won at home to Hemsby Beachcombers and followed that up by clipping the wings of local rivals Woodbastwick Eagles with an identical 16-2 result when they visited them five days later. The Eagles remain in second place though after winning 11-7 at Hemsby Beachcombers. Martham lost their seventh match in eight games after going down 16-2 at Bradwell Beacons. In the Tens League Hevingham crashed to another 4-0 away defeat, this time at the hands of Kirby Bedon. A first half pairs win of 22-6 for Jan Hewitt & Selwyn Goldsmith and a 27-6 second half triples win for Joan Costello, Shirley Brown & Joe Brown left Hevingham in all kinds of trouble.

                                                                                                                       Posted 17-2-16 

Norfolk Premier knock-out champions Hampshire

Norfolk Premier produced another terrific performance in Daventry as they stormed to a 28-12 win against Hampshire Premier to send the defending Inter-County Championship champions crashing out of the competition at the quarter-final stage. Norfolk’s singles and pairs stunned Hampshire in the opening session as they took all eight points. Wymondham’s Chris Mann got on top of the highly rated Ben Pay in the early stages to lead 13-3 after eight ends and despite a spirited comeback held on to win 19-12. Hempnall’s Neil Davidson found himself trailing early on against Jason McLean but scored two shots on the last end to snatch a 13-12 win. Halvergate & England’s David Lamb & Wymondham’s Jack Pye enjoyed an excellent 13-8 pairs win against Wendy Ford & Paul England and Simon Warnes & Jon Sparham completed a perfect opening session with an 11-10 win. Young Hampshire lead bowler Callum Goodman had made life very difficult for Warnes & Sparham with a faultless display of lead bowling which made their win even more creditable.The second session of triples & fours was shared although Norfolk put valuable shots on the board in the fours. Owen Cranston, Phil Watson, Nigel Willard & player-manager Selwyn Goldsmith hit a rich vein of form as they put Martyn Bubb’s rink to the sword winning 19-4. In the triples Kerry Greenacre, Debbie Sparham & Keith Cooke dominated in their game against Ian Ford’s triple as they won 18-7. After an interval break Norfolk’s singles stars continued where they left off with Chris Mann beating Jason McLean 16-8 and Neil Davidson beating Ben Pay 14-6. Norfolk’s pairs though both suffered narrow defeats but held on to earn the bonus points leaving Norfolk Premier needing just one point from the final session to seal victory. David Lamb & Jack Pye had held the shot they needed for victory after Pye’s last bowl but Leah Wood played a good final wood to win the game and keep Hampshire’s hopes alive.  Bob Carter’s Jamie Forster, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods had lost their first half game and were soon deep in trouble in their second game trailing 10-0 after just three ends. But a remarkable recovery was achieved after Jason & Melvin Woods changed playing positions and the Norfolk triple turned the game on its head to win 14-13 and take Norfolk into the semi-finals. Both Norfolk rinks also produced wins to take their team out of sight of Hampshire. Laura Hawksworth, Lewis Cranston, Rob Cranston & Bob Oatway beat Martyn Bubb’s rink 12-9 with Laura Hawksworth of Deaf Sports putting in an impressive performance on her Norfolk Premier debut. Selwyn Goldsmith’s rink scored their second win of the day beating James Bucknall’s rink 10-9 in a tight match. Norfolk Premier return to Daventry next Sunday where they will face Cheshire who beat Somerset in a dramatic three singles sudden death playoff after they finished level on points. Devon also knocked out West Mids in another singles shoot-out and will play Essex who ran out 28-12 winners against Kent.

                                                                                           Posted 14-2-16


                         Jamie Forster, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods - brilliant comeback

                                                      Smiling Norfolk faces all around at Daventry

                                       Norfolk's  Chris Mann & Simon Warnes focussed on their games

Kirby Bedon move top of Bure

With two wins this week Kirby Bedon have moved top of the Bure League on shot difference ahead of Halvergate. Kirby Bedon were slow off the mark at Woodbastwick where both away triples were trailing badly halfway through the first half but a fighting comeback on both mats saw Peter Johnson, Janice Hewitt & Selwyn Goldsmith beat Willie Jefferies’ triple 14-10 while Jill Watson, Phil Watson & Graham Tweed went down by just two shots to Lianne Mills’ triple after looking completely out of the game earlier. After the break Wendy Tweed, Shirley Brown & Joe Brown beat Derek Sheldrake’s triple 14-9 with Peter Jablonowski replying for Woodbastwick with a one shot win against Gerald Chilvers leaving Kirby Bedon 6-4 winners. Visitors Horsford Heroes went down on three mats at Kirby Bedon with Phil Watson’s triple winning 18-5, Joe Brown’s triple winning 22-8 and Gerald Chilvers’ triple winning 21-13. Chris Woodhouse grabbed a consolation 13-11 win for Horsford Heroes as Kirby collected an 8-2 home win. East Tuddenham’s title push was slowed at Hevingham where they suffered a surprise 6-4 defeat. For Tuddenham new signing Simon Willies produced a 14-11 win while John Jefferys added a 17-13 win. But Hevingham earned the bonus points as Maurice Kemp’s triple beat John Turner 20-8 and Alan Bunn’s triple beat Melvin Woods 16-11. Tuddenham suffered another setback at Thorpe Marriott where they were beaten 7-3 in a tight match. Jenny Walker, Kath Frost & George Clarke led the way for Marriott beating John Turner’s triple 18-10 and Richard Perkins added a 14-12 win against Melvin Woods while John Jarvis drew 10-10 with John Jefferys. Chris Mann grabbed a one shot win for East Tuddenham against Sylvia Turner. Marriott had a great run of wins as they also beat both Windows & Horsford Heroes 8-2 to move up to third in the table. Horsford Heroes will be delighted with a 7-3 win at Coltishall where Vic Webster’s triple beat Vic “Quiet Man” Woods 20-8.

                                                                                                         Posted 14-2-16

Finally the I.C.C diary is out – and its congestion ahead!

Looking at the ESMBA diary dates that have just been issued for the 2016/17 season leaves me with the same impression as tackling Norwich’s forever worsening road system, severe congestion up ahead. Gone it seems are the days when our National body concentrated on the I.C.C, the National Championships and the England team. In those days you had a reasonable chance of fitting in all the county competitions and national qualifiers and still have a date or two free for a charity event or some other competition on a free Sunday. Along with England days and ESMBA Committee meeting days etc that all have to be avoided, the task of fitting in County Championships & National Qualifiers on spare weekends is becoming an almost impossible task. Its like trying to complete a puzzle with too many pieces! We don’t always agree with everything that Bob Weafer says in his excellent magazine Short Mat International but in the latest issue he asks why the ESMBA seem determined to add one event after another into an already crowded winter fixture list. If short mat bowlers want to enter well run individual events the SMPT already provide a wealth of opportunities to do so, if short mat bowlers want to take part in bowling holidays Potters Resort, Bob Weafer etc all ready provide a range of dates at various locations. The ESMBA should be concentrating on the National Championships and the Inter-County Championships, they are the core events of the ESMBA. As it is they are in danger of getting lost among the many other events appearing such as the ESMBA Pairs, the I.C.C Rinks, the ESMBA Open Fours, the ESMBA Triples, the TLH events, the ESMBA Open Singles etc. And that’s without the I.C.C Fives that happily disappeared without ever seeing the light of day. Enough is enough Guys!

It is time the ESMBA returned to its core values, too many years have been wasted in pursuing an array of lost causes such as its expensive, and thankfully now discontinued, involvement with the BDA and the determination to appoint an Administrator in place of separate Officers to run some of the functions of the ESMBA. Keith Hawkins’ resignation has shown the disadvantages of this move. If, say for example a Membership Secretary resigns, you just have to find a replacement to do a single job. In the wake of the Administrators’ resignation the ESMBA has a major job on their hands trying to cover the many functions he carried out. I personally feel sorry for Barry Hedges and Brandon Whittaker as they take on more and more work trying to steer the Association through to the next AGM and they both deserve praise for the time they are putting in for our sport. Our advice, for what its worth, is get back to the basics. Simplify the diary, drop all these extra events and get the I.C.C working properly again. Too many counties are allowed to enter their single team into the “A” Team event, this was never the intention of having an I.C.C “A” Team event. We now have the situation where genuine “A” teams find themselves playing so-called “A” teams with internationals in their ranks, this can’t be what was intended. Just 18 counties now enter the I.C.C Premier section but 27 counties enter the I.C.C “A” Team Championships, that’s just plain daft.

Next season Norfolk Premier are playing in Group 2 with Northants Premier, Essex Premier & Surrey Premier. Norfolk will be delighted to have Surrey back in their group, their Wye Valley venue in Guildford is one of the best in the country, and also delighted to see proper groups with four teams in them. We would have been even happier to see groups of five or six teams at the expense of all these new competitions cluttering up the calendar. West Mids have been moved back into familiar territory in Group 1 with Cheshire Premier and Herefordshire Premier after a season with Northants Premier & Norfolk Premier that brought them mixed results. Norfolk “A” play in Group 2 and will face Essex “A”, Suffolk & Cambridgeshire so we will see a resumption of the rivalry between Norfolk & Essex in their lively double headers. The Norfolk SMBA is unable to publish the I.C.C dates at this time as the dates sent to the previous Administrator detailing when the Norfolk venue was unavailable have not been acted upon. This means that Norfolk have had to contact Essex, Cambs & Northants in an attempt to arrange different dates for some I.C.C matches. As soon as those dates have been agreed the fixture dates will be announced.


NCSMBA re-appoints County manager

Norfolk County Team Manager Selwyn Goldsmith of Kirby Bedon SMBC was re-appointed as Norfolk County Team Manager for another two year term at a meeting of the NCSMBA Management Committee held at Thorpe Marriott. NCSMBA President Brian Saunders praised the manager for his work over the last two years and his commitment to encouraging young players in the county team set-up. The Committee also voted to upgrade the County equipment by replacing the “Verde” mats used by the county during the summer in time for the next winter season. A decision was made to move forward with the installation of a trophy cabinet at Hingham Sports & Social Club. Assistant Membership Secretary Teresa Goldsmith clarified the situation regarding membership cards for new members who have joined for the 2015/16 season. Teresa Goldsmith told the meeting that all new members have been allocated membership numbers but cards are still awaited from the ESMBA. This could in part be due to the resignation of ESMBA Administrator Keith Hawkins which has obviously caused workload problems at National level. In the meantime any queries regarding the membership of any player in the NCSMBA can be addressed by contacting either Lianne Mills or Teresa Goldsmith. Following the meeting the NCSMBA was also able to announce that the NCSMBA Annual General Meeting will take place at North Wymondham Community Centre on Sunday 26-6-16 at 10am.

                                                                                                                                         Posted 12-2-16

Membership Cards for new members still awaited

As previously announced, following the resignation of ESMBA Administrator Keith Hawkins, the duties previously carried out by him have been allocated among other members by ESMBA Chairman Barry Hedges. While existing members are all in possession of the new permanent membership cards, issued the previous season, new members who have since joined the NCSMBA & ESMBA have still not received their membership cards and rule books. Until the NCSMBA receive these cards from the ESMBA they can of course play and have been allocated membership numbers. If there are any queries regarding membership please continue to contact either Lianne Mills or Teresa Goldsmith who can provide you with membership number details if required. What the NCSMBA cannot do is provide these players with their new cards, these will be sent by the ESMBA in due course.   

Hempnall edge past Marriott

After their 13-7 win at home, Hempnall drew the second leg at Marriott 10-10 to seal a semi final tie against Deaf Sports in the challenge cup. In the first singles match however Marriott's Majorie Hall produced a big upset defeating four time county singles champion Neil Davidson 10-6 while Hempnall captain Paul Baker beat John Jarvis 10-8. A big 10-1 win for Bernie Cudden, Mike Pearce, Richard Harrowing and Joan Cann in the fours gave Hempnall a 25-31 shots win to secure the first session 6-4. Second session saw Majorie Hall subbed for George Clarke as he beat Paul Baker 9-7 to keep Marriott in the tie but Neil Davidson returned to form scoring the tie winning points beating John Jarvis 11-6. Jenny Walker, Richard Perkins, Peter Walker and Tony Turner secured their second win of the night beating Joan Cann's four 11-3 which did see them take the overall shots in the second session  31-30 but this was just consolation in the end.

                                                                                                                Posted 10-2-16

Potters February & May Short Mat Bowls events sold out

The Potters Resort Late Booking Deal advertised for the February Short Mat Bowls Break run by Greg Harlow’s team has sold out in record time. Bookings are also now closed on the Potters East Coast Triples & Pairs week in May. Bookings are now being taken for the Potters Short Mat Bowls Cup Weekend in September where a special price, considerably below Potters normal brochure price, is again being offered to short mat bowlers. The long weekend of short mat bowls, which includes a performance by Jane McDonald in Potters Atlas Theatre, is now in its 16th year and the bowls is organised by NCSMBA Officers Teresa & Selwyn Goldsmith. For full details a link to the booking forms and fliers is available by clicking below. 


                 Potters International Arena - where the Potters Cup Weekend matches are all played

Presentation Table

Presentation time with Potters Resort Richard Beare of World Bowls fame

Chris Mann records another end at the Potters Cup

Six in a row for Carter

Bob Carter made it six straight wins in the Tens League as they brushed aside Hevingham at Drayton scoring 89 shots against 34. Glynis Willard, Jean Woods & Rob Howlett led the way with a terrific 43-6 scoreline while Elaine Willies, Simon Willies & Melvin Woods won 20-6 and Sue Hunt & Jason Woods won 15-9. David Sharpe & Rex Cox scored a consolation 13-11 win for Hevingham against Nigel Willard & John Turner. Coltishall won 3-0 at home to Connaught with Jean Barnett & John Aggas scoring a 21-11 win, Carol Aggas & Margaret Harman winning 15-10 and Vic Woods’ triple winning 18-12. Bill Adcock’s triple scored Connaught’s only win beating Les Harman 18-9. South Norfolk League action saw defending champions Hempnall visit second placed Connaught and come away with a valuable 8-2 win. Connaught won 8-2 at Wreningham though with Steve Hall’s triple winning 17-10. Table toppers Horsford won 6-4 at home to bottom of the table Saxlingham. Bure League champions Halvergate continue to impress, they won 8-2 at home to Thorpe Marriott with Steven Lamb, David Knights & Simon Warnes winning 17-10. East Tuddenham were also in good form beating Kirby Bedon 8-2 with a 24-5 win for Linda Chadwick, Les Chadwick & Melvin Woods their best result. Joe Brown’s triple picked up Kirby’s only win beating John Turner’s triple 15-10. Kirby Bedon did better at home to Horsford BC winning by 9-1 with Phil Watson’s triple winning 20-5. In the Breckland League Harling Griffins beat Shropham 10-0 and Connaught “A” won 8-2 at Connaught “B”.

Woodbastwick Owls head Eagles in Coastal Cup  

Woodbastwick Owls remain top of the Coastal Cup League after a solid 14-4 home win against struggling Bradwell Beacons who have only won once in six outings. Woodbastwick Eagles are just ten points behind their local rivals after smashing Hemsby Harvesters 15-3 and winning 12-6 at Bradwell Beacons. Bradwell Dynamos are well placed in third position after a 16-2 home win against Hemsby Beachcombers.

Coastal Pairs win for Bradwell

The annual Coastal Pairs attracted sixteen teams from the Coastal League and was played in four round robin groups comprising of four teams in each. The winners to emerge from the round robins were Jenny Walker & Derek Sheldrake of Woodbastwick Owls, Gail Hodgson & Mick Hodgson of Hemsby Beachcombers, Norma & Peter Jablonowski of Woodbastwick Owls and Josh Baxter & Mike Harvey of Bradwell Beacons. The semi-final pairings pitted Jenny Walker & Derek Sheldrake against Josh Baxter & Mike Harvey which turned out to be a hard fought game, after 8 ends the scores were level at 6-6 and the extra end produced a close finish success by 2 shots for the Bradwell pair. In the other semi- final the relatively new Hemsby pair Gail & Mick Hodgson produced brilliant form to beat the experienced pairing of Norma & Peter Jablonowski and progress to the final. 

The Coastal Pairs Final saw Josh Baxter, at lead for Bradwell, produce some brilliant shots to be on the jack first time throughout the game which left Mike Harvey the job of keeping Mick Hodgson at bay. Although Mick Hodgson had played brilliantly in the earlier rounds he could not penetrate the Bradwell pair’s bowls and Beacons emerged 12-1 winners. It was an excellent days bowling overseen by Coastal League Chairman Terry Nash who presented the trophies.

                                                                                                                Posted 8-2-16

                                Josh Baxter & Mike Harvey of Bradwell Beacons - Coastal Pairs winners

Knock-out stages fatal again in SMPT English Masters

Group Stages - Pye, Davidson & Mann on fire

Five Norfolk County bowlers entered the SMPT Masters in Bromsgrove. Jack Pye of Wymondham enjoyed a perfect set of results in Group 4 winning all his five games to qualify for the knock-out stages. His wins included an 11-7 result against Sweden’s Rosa Albrektsson. Hempnall’s Neil Davidson also won Group 24 with four wins and a draw. He beat Martin Harries of Wales 13-6 and Alannah Howard of Northern Ireland 16-6. Chris Mann of Wymondham became the third Norfolk entry to win their group as he collected four wins with one defeat in Group 7. His biggest win was a 21-7 result against Tony Ealham of Essex. The two Norfolk bowlers making their debuts in a SMPT event were Laura Hawksworth & John Jeffery of Deaf Sports. Laura Hawksworth finished fourth in Group 5 but will be pleased with an 11-7 win against Sam Moore of Northern Ireland, an 8-7 win against Ryan Steadman of England and an 11-11 draw with Lynn Dean of England. John Jeffery will be disappointed with his debut as he lost all his group games but should learn from the experience. The event provided its normal share of surprise casualties in the group stages who failed to make it through to the main event knock-out stages. In Group 22 both Gareth Stanway & James Trott of England were eliminated. The strong Group 20 saw Joseph Beattie of Northern Ireland and Sweden’s Jonas Hager fall at the first hurdle as Tony Bell of Northern Ireland and Somerset’s Lee Toleman took the two qualifying spots. PJ Gallagher of Ireland & England’s Martin Simcock both failed to qualify from Group 19 which was won by Sam Harvey of Wales. A member of the West Sussex team who suffered a torrid time at the hands of Norfolk Premier last week endured another bad weekend. Marc “Bomber” Lancaster lost all his five games in Group 6 conceding 83 shots and scoring 36.

Knock-Out Stages end in all England Final

Chris Mann won his first knock-out round game against Alex Kley by 13-8 but suffered a somewhat surprise 11-9 defeat against Nigel Reed of Essex in the next round. Jack Pye bit the dust in the first knock-out round going down by just one shot against James Smith. Neil Davidson also made a first knock-out round exit losing 14-4 to Graham Jones. It was a disappointment after all three had shown such good form in the group stages, and with the entries including many bowlers not well known on the scene, hopes had been high that one or more of the three would make the final stages. The two Deaf Sports bowlers, failing to make it through to the main event, were now facing lesser knock-out games. John Jeffery went out in the first Shield knock-out round losing 11-7 to Alun Thomas of England. Laura Hawksworth though was now looking for her third win and got it as she beat Malcolm Saunders 8-7 in the first Plate knock-out round. This earned Laura a match against Joseph Beattie of Northern Ireland, winner of both the English Masters and the UK Masters in 2013 as well as the Swedish Masters in 2014. Joseph had been one of the shock casualties in the group stages. The result of the match was 16-6 in Beattie’s favour. But for a young lady totally inexperienced at playing at this level, taking six shots off a world class player like Joseph Beattie and losing by only ten shots is something she can be proud of at this stage of her short mat bowls career. The final of the SMPT English Masters was an all England affair with James Bucknall defeating Dom Reed 9-6 to claim the title for the first time.

                                                                                                                            Posted 7-2-16

                                 Syd Harman's family extend their thanks

Following on from Syd's Harman's funeral last week, his brother Les and sons Kevin and Paul want to extend their thanks and appreciation to all the bowlers who attended the church service. They were all taken back by all those who attended and just wanted to say thanks again for the support.

                                                                       Posted 1-2-16

West Sussex Premier swept aside

Norfolk Premier swept into the Inter-County Championship quarter-finals after a massive 27-1 points win against West Sussex Premier. Despite being unbeaten in the group stages, and achieving a double against West Mids, a second place position in their group left Norfolk facing a tricky looking preliminary round tie against a strong West Sussex side in Daventry. Norfolk though made a superb start winning seven of the first eight games and drawing another to lead 15-1 at the interval. Wymondham’s Chris Mann looked in great form as he powered into a 10-2 lead after nine ends in the singles eventually winning 18-7. In the other singles match Hempnall’s Neil Davidson led up to the last end but was forced to settle for a 10-10 draw when his opponent took two shots on the last end. Norfolk took maximum points in the pairs as David Lamb & Jack Pye won 15-8 and Simon Warnes & Jon Sparham won 19-10. Norfolk kept up the pressure in the triples & fours. Jamie Forster made a successful return to county action as lead for Jason & Melvin Woods as the Bob Carter stars won 12-8 and Kerry Greenacre, Debbie Sparham & Keith Cooke won 13-10. Player-Manager Selwyn Goldsmith had made changes to the rinks and they quickly paid dividends as Lewis Cranston, Rob Cranston, Morgan Warnes & Bob Oatway won 16-7 and Owen Cranston, Phil Watson, Nigel Willard & Selwyn Goldsmith won 16-8. Another great session followed for Norfolk Premier when the singles & pairs returned to the mats for their second games. This time it was a clean sweep as Neil Davidson raced to a 22-6 win and Chris Mann won 15-14 while in the pairs Simon Warnes & Jon Sparham won 16-10 and David Lamb & Jack Pye won 15-9. West Sussex decided to call it a day at that point and conceded leaving the final session unplayed. Norfolk Premier will now face defending champions Hampshire Premier in the quarter-finals on Sunday week at Daventry. Norfolk “A” faced North Yorkshire in the I.C.C “A” Team preliminaries and went down 29-11 against their strong opponents. North Yorks had played in the Premier section in recent years but were allowed to drop down to the “A” section this season despite fielding England internationals Ben Render & Danny Langdon in their team. Langdon showed his class in the singles beating Mike Boswell of Windows 17-10 and Robin Amos of Deaf Sports 15-11. Render skipped his pair to wins of 17-8 & 17-7 as Norfolk struggled against a side who have earned considerable experience in I.C.C Premier competition. The rink of Elaine Oatway, Jean Woods, Lesley Crowe and George Clarke hit back for Norfolk winning their first game 15-6 and with Ted Redwood subbing in their second game added a win of 16-5. Norfolk’s other wins were by Karl & Terry Newby in the pairs and Graham Mobbs’ rink.

Hempnall still top of the Tens

Hempnall continue to lead the Tens League with Bob Carter now looking the main opposition. Hempnall won a tight match 2-0 at Kirby Bedon where they came from behind to clinch victory. Kirby’s Teresa & Selwyn Goldsmith beat Roger Parker & Neil Davidson 17-10 in the pairs but Chris Mann’s triple hit back by beating Phil Watson’s triple 15-10 leaving Kirby two shots up at the break. In the second half Owen Cranston & Jack Pye beat Shirley & Joe Brown 13-10 while Paul Baker’s triple beat Gerald Chilvers 16-12 to see Hempnall over the finishing line at a venue where they tend to find the going tough. Hempnall earned a maximum 4-0 win in their next match at home to Connaught where Neil Davidson & Roger Parker returned to winning ways with a blistering performance beating Diana & Bill Adcock 31-6. Current West Mids Premier and former England bowler Simon Willies, recently relocated to Norfolk, made an appearance in the Bob Carter side for their away match at Coltishall. Playing at number two, with Rob Howlett at skip and Jean Woods at lead, Simon tasted success on Norfolk soil beating Les Harman’s triple 13-10. Bob Carter took all four points winning all four games as Coltishall found their visitors in great form. Jamie Forster & Jason Woods opened with a 23-6 win against Carol & John Aggas, Nigel Willard & John Turner won 20-10 against Jean Barnett & Margaret Harman and Sue Hunt, Steve Bridge & Melvin Woods beat Vic “Quiet Man” Woods and his triple by 17-6. Halvergate were held to a 1-1 draw at Connaught, a result that severely damaged their title hopes. Simon Warnes’ triple were the only winners for Halvergate recording an excellent 19-6 win but Connaught won all the other three games to leave the teams level at 53 shots each. Diane Quadling, Elaine Oatway & Joe Lirocchi were Connaught’s best scorers beating Morgan Warnes’ triple 20-10. Halvergate improved at Hevingham where a 4-0 away win left Hevingham at the foot of the table. David Knights & Keith Cooke beat David Sharpe’s pair 23-9 while Morgan Warnes & David Lamb beat Maurice Kemp’s pair 24-3. Both triples games also went Halvergate’s way with Simon Warnes winning 17-8 and Robbie Lamb winning 16-9.


Two miss the bus for visit to Wymondham

Wymondham started as hot favourites at home to First Bus in their Norwich Cup Quarter-Final clash but their task was made even easier as two of the visiting team failed to appear at the venue. This left both First Bus triples having to play with a player short and it was no surprise that Wymondham moved effortlessly into the semi-finals with a 15-1 points win and now face Halvergate over two legs. The visitors only point was actually earned in the triples where Elaine Oatway & Lesley Crowe drew 8-8 with Pat Saunders, Melvyn Barker &  Debbie Sparham.    


Horsford Heroes close gap on Horsford BC

With City of Norwich League leaders not playing this week Horsford Heroes took advantage to cut the gap to eleven points with a 10-4 home win against Jarrolds. Costessey are third after winning 12-2 at neighbours Taverham.Thorpe Marriott won 12-2 at Windows but will not be happy at losing 12-2 at County Council. Deaf Sports racked up a 14-0 win on points, 76-20 on shots, at home to Taverham while Framingham Earl won 13-1 at home to British Rail.


Roy Everitt Trophy at March IBC in April

Cambridgeshire have announced that the Roy Everitt Trophy competition for triples will be held at March IBC on Saturday 2nd April. The start time will be 9.30am with bowlers booking in at 9am. There will be a first prize of £90, £60 for the runners-up and a third prize of £30. The entry fee will be £19.50 per triple. Cheques should be made payable to C.S.M.B.A and sent to V. Ware, “Homeleigh” Hockland Road, Tydd St-Giles, Wisbech, PE13 5LF. Coffee, tea & biscuits will be available and entries will be limited to 40 triples. E.S.M.B.A rules and dress code will apply for this event with proceeds going to C.S.M.B.A Funds.  

                                                                                                                                                   Posted 31-1-16

Draw kind to Nelson's boys in English Masters

The draw for the SMPT English Masters, being held at Bromsgrove IBC on 6-2-16 & 7-2-16, has been made and Norfolk players who have entered will be quite pleased to have avoided the big guns in the group stages. The first prize on offer is £500 and 144 players have entered and will play in 24 groups of six players. Chris Mann of Wymondham will be playing in Group 7 with fellow Englishmen Tony Ealham, Robert Martin & Del Coates as well as Irish entrants Angus Barnes & Adrian Tanner. If Chris Mann can recapture the form that saw him lift the European Masters in 2013 he should have no trouble progressing into the knockout stages. Group 4 includes two other Norfolk County Squad players, Jack Pye of Wymondham and John Jeffery of Deaf Sports. This group also includes Joshua Woods, Alan Thompson & Barry Whitburn, all from England, and Swedish bowler Rosa Albrektsson. Jack Pye is experienced at competing in SMPT events and the young man from Wymondham will be ultra confident of reaching the knock-outs. This is John Jeffery’s first venture into SMPT bowls and the weekend should be beneficial to his game. Laura Hawksworth of Deaf Sports is also making her first appearance in this kind of event and in her group she will face England’s Lynn Dean, Ryan Steadman, Antony Bull & John Parnell as well as Ireland’s Sam Moore. Like her Deaf Sports team-mate John Jefferys this will be a new experience for Laura but the draw has again been kind to a Norfolk bowler. Neil Davidson of Hempnall, Norfolk’s reigning singles champion, will play in Group 24 with England’s James Neal, Danny Curl & Mark Allen, Martin Harries of Wales and Alannah Howard of Ireland. Neil has shown good form at this level and is a difficult player to beat in the singles discipline. He has probably got the hardest group of any Norfolk entrant but will still be expected to make the knock-outs. Defending English Masters champion Stephen Williams of Wales has been drawn in Group 2 where England’s Ben Pay could prove his most difficult opponent. Group 21 includes Irish Open champion Dimitri Payne of Belgium, Sweden’s Christer Almen, Chris Martin & Nick Evans of Wales and James Smith & Chris Coates of England. On paper one of the toughest groups of the event. Group 9 also looks likely to produce some tasty games with Belgium’s Jonathan Payne, Sweden’s Tommy Dahlgren & Ireland’s PJ McCrossan all involved. Gareth Stanway has entered the event and is in Group 22, if the Cheshire ace is on form he could well go all the way. 

                                                                                                        Posted 25-1-16  

Chris Mann after winning European Masters

Woodbastwick concede

Halvergate will face East Tuddenham in the Bure Cup Final after beating Woodbastwick in the semi-finals. Halvergate powered to an 18-6 victory at Woodbastwick in the first leg with David Knights, Morgan Warnes & Simon Warnes winning all their three games. Woodbastwick decided to concede the tie without playing the away leg. Thorpe Marriott are through to the semi-finals of the Norwich Cup after a 10-6 quarter-final win at Harling. Sheila Redwood, Ted Redwood & John Jarvis won their games by 13-2 & 7-4 in the triples while Jenny & Peter Walker won their pairs games by 9-7 & 11-1. Thorpe Marriott will play Kirby Bedon in the semi-finals. In the City of Norwich League leaders Horsford BC won 11-3 at home to Costessey while second placed Horsford Heroes crashed to a 12-2 defeat at Thorpe Marriott and twenty-one points now separate the teams at the top. Third placed First Bus suffered a shock 14-0 home defeat against County Council. The big match in the Tens League saw Hempnall cruise to a 4-0 home win against Halvergate. Kerry Greenacre, Rob Cranston & Chris Mann beat Simon Warnes’ triple 21-8 with Cranston in excellent form. Paul Baker & Jack Pye beat Robbie & David Lamb 19-7 in the pairs while Charlie Archer’s triple beat Robin Amos 12-7. The visitors gained purely a consolation 12-11 win in the pairs as Morgan Warnes & Keith Cooke beat Neil Davidson & Roger Parker.

East Tuddenham bowlers dominate

The preliminary rounds of the Bure League Singles Championships have been held with East Tuddenham bowlers claiming half of the Finals Night places. Defending champion John Turner of East Tuddenham won the heat at Horsford BC winning three games and drawing the other one with his biggest win being a 13-6 result against Kirby Bedon’s Shirley Brown in his opening game. Mike Boswell of Windows won three games and only lost by one shot to Turner but his total was enough to claim him a Finals Night place as one of the best three runners up over the five heats. Last season’s runner-up, Chris Mann of East Tuddenham, won the heat held at Kirby Bedon scoring maximum points with his best result a 17-1 win against fellow East Tuddenham player Melvin Woods. Woods won his other three games comfortably though and also qualified. At Thorpe Marriott former Norfolk Premier bowler Peter Jablonowski of Woodbastwick won all his games to qualify with East Tuddenham’s John Jeffery’s six points and a +5 shot difference also getting him safely through. At the Hevingham heat David Lamb of Halvergate took maximum points to qualify but runner-up George Clarke’s tally of five points was not enough for him to progress. Thorpe Marriott’s John Jarvis won the East Tuddenham heat winning all games while Brian Frost was runner-up but failed to qualify. The dates and venues of the Bure League Singles, Pairs & Triples Finals Nights will be announced next week.


David Lamb (Halvergate), Chris Mann (East Tuddenham), Peter Jablonowski (Woodbastwick), John Turner (East Tuddenham), Mike Boswell (Windows), Melvin Woods (East Tuddenham), John Jeffery (East Tuddenham)

                                                                                                                                     Posted 23-1-16 

                               Defending Bure Singles Champion John Turner through to Finals Night

Challenge cup semi final draw produces potential big tie

With Bob Carter taking an 18-2 lead into their second leg tie at Forncett it looks highly likely they will be up against defending champions Wymondham in the semi finals, while Deaf Sports who put out Hingham will face either Hempnall or Thorpe Marriott with Hempnall only taking a 13-7 advantage to Marriott.  

Norfolk County Points table released

The Norfolk County Points Table, which reflects bowler’s performances in the Norfolk County Championship & National Qualifiers over a two year time period, has been released following the completion of all the Norfolk County Championship & National Qualifiers for the season. The Top 30 in the rankings all receive an automatic invitation into the Norfolk County Squad for the 2016/17 season. The table reveals that Wymondham’s Jon Sparham has retained the coveted number one ranking after winning the Norfolk Fours title and coming second in the Norfolk Mixed Fours. Jon Sparham’s total of 55 points this season was the second highest achieved. His fellow Wymondham skip Jack Pye has moved up one place to number two leap frogging Bob Carter’s Melvin Woods at number three. The top female bowler in the rankings is still Debbie Sparham of Wymondham who remains at number four. After yet another Norfolk Singles triumph Hempnall’s Neil Davidson moves up to number five and in doing so pushed Bob Carter’s Jason Woods down one place to sixth despite Woods lifting the Norfolk Triples title. In seventh place is Kirby Bedon’s Selwyn Goldsmith who with 65 points was this season’s top scorer in the table after skipping both the winning Norfolk Pair and the Norfolk Mixed Four and securing third place in both the Norfolk Triples & Norfolk Fours. Haddiscoe’s Kerry Greenacre, who won both championship titles with Goldsmith, moves up to number eight and joins Debbie Sparham as the only ladies in the top ten. John Turner of East Tuddenham, despite not adding to his title tally this season, actually accumulated seven more points than last season and is number nine. Chris Mann of Wymondham picked up a couple more points this season than last and that kept him in the top ten, his Norfolk Fours title win was vital. There is a 17 point gap between Mann and the player ranked at number 11 but there is only an 18 point difference between the eleventh ranked bowler and the twentieth. Norfolk’s four England Squad players feature in this section of the table with Horsford BC bowlers Morgan Warnes & Simon Warnes ranked at 12 & 15 respectively and Halvergate bowlers David Lamb & Keith Cooke ranked at 14 & 17 respectively. Also in this section of the rankings are Wymondham’s young star Mikey George at 11, talented Bob Carter bowler Jamie Forster at 13 and Thorpe Marriott’s Jenny Walker at number 16. The experienced Nigel Willard of Bob Carter is ranked at number 18 on 36 points. Four players are then on 36 points, Halvergate’s Donna Lamb, Bob Carter’s Robert Howlett, Thorpe Marriott’s Ted Redwood and Carleton Rode’s Ollie Allen with Melvyn Barker of Wymondham and Peter Smart of Sprowston just one point behind. Thorpe Marriott’s Peter Walker is in at number 25, County Council’s Rob Cranston at 26 while Halvergate's Robbie Lamb & Billie Barker of Wymondham fill the next two positions with 29 points apiece. Terry Newby of Carleton Rode fills the number 29 spot while in the Top 30 for the first time is Trish Taylor of Diss. Level on points with Trish Taylor is Thorpe Marriott’s Janet Pinchen who has just missed out on a Top 30 placing due to the points earned by Trish Taylor in 2015/16. Also just missing out on an automatic squad invite are Wymondham’s Debbie Pye & Roger Steele who finished with just one point less than Taylor & Pinchen.

                                                                                                                                       Posted 22-1-16  

Jon Sparham retained top spot in the Norfolk Rankings

Norfolk Manager Selwyn Goldsmith - top point scorer this season

Wymondham winning run goes on

Defending Breckland League champions Wymondham stretched their winning sequence to twelve matches with a 7-3 away win at Harling Unicorns. A great start for Harling saw Maureen Tarrent, Penny Lee & Mike Tarrent beat Jon Sparham’s triple 16-20 but Chris Mann’s triple replied for the visitors with a 21-11 win. Five shots on the sixteenth end proved crucial for Mann’s triple. Melvyn Barker’s Wymondham triple were held to a 16-16 draw by Matt Cunningham’s triple after the break but Wymondham’s win was sealed with a 30-7 win for Jack Pye’s triple. Connaught “A” won 6-4 at Harling Unicorns where Bob Oatway’s triple won 25-10 and Lee Fallows’ triple won 25-11. Connaught “B” won 6-4 at home to Banham with Peter King’s triple winning 18-10, those shots earned Connaught “B” the match points.

                                                                                                            Posted 20-1-16

                                              Syd Harman Funeral Details

The funeral will be held at St Mary's Church, Ellingham, Bungay, NR35 2EP on Thursday 28th January at 1.30pm with a private cremation following the service.


Halvergate clear at top

Defending Bure League champions Halvergate are sixteen points clear at the top of the Bure League after an 8-2 away win at Hevingham. Keith Cooke’s triple led the way with a 22-13 win against David Sharpe while the home sides only win was earned by Maurice Kemp’s triple who beat Ray Lamb, Morgan Warnes & Simon Warnes. Hevingham won at home to Coltishall though in a close encounter where only four shots separated the teams. A 14-8 win for David Sharpe’s triple against John Aggas saw Hevingham over the finishing line. Woodbastwick won 8-2 at Coltishall where the home mat knowledge of former Coltishall captain Willie Jefferies paid dividends as his triple beat Les Harman 13-11. Another former Coltishall player also won as Brian Bunting featured in a 17-7 win against his old club. Margaret Harman’s triple scored Coltishall’s only win of the night beating Peter Jablonowski’s triple 16-10. Window’s miserable season continued as they slumped to a 10-0 defeat at Kirby Bedon where Peter Johnson, Graham Tweed & Melvyn Barker stormed to a 26-4 win.

                                                                                                                           Posted 18-1-16

Keith Cooke - tormented Hevingham

City League action

Sprowston’s City League season continued to improve with a 10-4 away win at Framingham Earl. Costessey though saw their title hopes hit as they slumped to a 12-2 defeat at Framingham Earl. Thorpe Marriott will be happy with a 12-2 away win at Taverham. Windows continue to struggle, this time they suffered an 11-3 home defeat at the hands of Costessey. Deaf Sports emerged with a 12-2 home win against County Council.

East Tuddenham in Bure Cup final

East Tuddenham are through to the final of the Bure Cup after a 30-10 win on aggregate against Horsford Heroes. Tuddenham pulled off a 14-10 away win in the first leg at Horsford where Melvin Woods, John Turner & John Jefferys skipped their triples to two wins apiece. In the return leg East Tuddenham reeled off eight straight wins before Horsford conceded.  

Norwich Cup Draw

The draw for the semi-finals of the Norwich Cup has set up a potential clash between Bure League champions Halvergate and Breckland League champions Wymondham. Halvergate are already through to the semi-finals but Wymondham first have City League side First Bus to contend with in the quarter-finals. The other semi-final will be between Kirby Bedon and the winners of the quarter-final match between Harling Rec & Thorpe Marriott.

                                                                                                               Posted 17-1-16

Home leg puts Deaf Sports through

After a 13-7 away defeat at Hingham in the Challenge Cup, Deaf Sports knew they had a decent chance of progressing with them having the home leg to come. They made the perfect start as John Jeffery beat Wendy Tweed 11-8 while Robin Amos inflicted a 13-2 win on Will Townsend. In the fours Laura Hawksworth skipped her four to an impressive 18-4 win which secured the shots while Hingham's only win in the first session came from Keith Thomas' rink as they won by a slim 8-6 margin to go down 8-2 overall. The second session again saw strong performances from the singles as Robin Amos beat Wendy Tweed 14-11 while John Jeffery produced the best result of the night as he beat Will Townsend 18-0! This pretty much meant that both of Hingham's fours now needed two big wins to put them through but neither were able to as C. Short's four drew 5-5 while Keith Thomas secured his second win of the night as his four beat Laura Hawksworth's rink 5-8. 

In another match played this week Thorpe Marriott played their first Challenge Cup match and will be pleased to have come away with a 13-7 defeat against current South Norfolk champions Hempnall who put out Halvergate in the last round. Neil Davidson and Roger Parker looked to be putting Hempnall in a strong position early on as both won by 15-6 and 13-4 against George Clarke and John Jarvis. But a draw and a win in the fours for Thorpe Marriott, which saw Tony Turner's block win 8-5 against R. Harrowing and Sylvia Turner drew 9-9 against Joan Cann, gave them three points in the session. The singles again saw the points go Hempnall's way with wins of 11-7 for Roger Parker and 7-6 for Neil Davidson. An 8-7 win added by Joan Cann's rink looked to put Hempnall in the driving seat going into the second leg but a big 10-1 win for Sylvia Turner's four saw them clinch the shots by 30-27 giving them just a 6-4 session defeat which now puts the tie right back in the balance with the second leg at Thorpe Marriott to come.

                                                                                              Posted 16-1-16

Rest in Peace Syd Harman

The Norfolk Short Mat Bowls Association is saddened to learn of the death of popular Hempnall bowler Syd Harman who died suddenly yesterday. Syd was a great character and one of the nicest people you could have the pleasure of knowing. He was a former member of the Norfolk County Squad and won many titles during his long membership of Hempnall SMBC who play in the South Norfolk League and the Tens League. Syd will be greatly missed by all. The NCSMBA would like to offer its condolences to Syd’s family and many friends. Funeral arrangements will appear on this website when announced.

                                                                                                                 Posted 15-1-16

Massive reduction for Potters Short Mat Break in February

A fantastic late booking offer has been announced for the Monday to Friday Short Mat Bowls Holiday at the five star Potters Resort in February. The normal brochure price of £339, based on a standard bungalow rate, has been slashed to just £199 per person if the break is booked through Teresa Goldsmith of the NCSMBA by phoning 01603-403628. The break includes entry into the short mat bowls competition, comfortable accommodation, four meals a day for each day of your stay, fantastic live evening entertainment, a full daytime activities programme and a huge selection of sports & leisure facilities. The short mat bowls competition will be run by Potters and guests will book in on Monday 22nd February and leave on Friday 26th February. For those who have stayed at the superb Potters Resort before, you will know that this special price offers fantastic value. For anyone who has not visited the famous Potters Resort before this is your opportunity to do so at a very special price that may never be offered again.

Short Mat Bowls action at Potters Resort

National Championship allocations announced  

The ESMBA has released the allocations for this year’s National Championships and once again Norfolk will have a strong representation in the sports premier event in England. Norfolk has the maximum four places in each of the main four disciplines, the National Singles, Pairs, Triples & Fours. Norfolk has just two places this year in the National Mixed Fours but three places in the National Under 18s. All the events will take place at Church Gresley IBC in Derbyshire. The National Mixed Fours will be on Saturday 2-4-16 and the National Under 18s on Sunday 3-4-16. The National Singles will be on Thursday 7-4-16, the National Pairs on Friday 8-4-16, the National Fours on Saturday 9-4-16 and the National Triples on Sunday 10-4-16. Norfolk Squad players have clinched the vast majority of qualifying spots with their Manager & Assistant Manager Selwyn Goldsmith & Jon Sparham leading the way qualifying for four events each while Jamie Forster, Kerry Greenacre, Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye are in three events each. Essex has the biggest allocation with four entries in all of the six events while Dorset has four entries in all the events except the Mixed Fours where they have three. Norfolk has the third most allocated spots. At the other end of the scale Avon, Lancashire, London, Merseyside & Isle of Wight have no entries in the Nationals at all while Cambridgeshire have just one single and Shropshire, Warwickshire & Wiltshire have only two entries each.  


Norfolk Qualifiers

National Singles

Norfolk 1 -  Neil Davidson

Norfolk 2 – Simon Warnes

Norfolk 3 – Jamie Forster

Norfolk 4 – Jon Sparham

National Pairs

Norfolk 1 – Kerry Greenacre & Selwyn Goldsmith

Norfolk 2 – Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye

Norfolk 3 – Mikey George & Jon Sparham

Norfolk 4 – Kevin Watson & Steven Lamb

National Triples

Norfolk 1 – Jamie Forster, Robbie Lamb & Jason Woods

Norfolk 2 – Nigel Willard, John Turner & Melvin Woods

Norfolk 3 – Kerry Greenacre, Keith Cooke & Selwyn Goldsmith

Norfolk 4 – Lewis Cranston, Owen Cranston & Rob Cranston

National Fours

Norfolk 1 – Chris Mann, Debbie Sparham, Jack Pye & Jon Sparham

Norfolk 2 – Nigel Willard, Jason Woods, John Turner, Melvin Woods

Norfolk 3 – Jill Watson, Teresa Goldsmith, Phil Watson, Selwyn Goldsmith

Norfolk 4 – Mikey George, Jamie Forster, Morgan Warnes, Neil Davidson

National Mixed Fours

Norfolk 1 – Kerry Greenacre, Jenny Walker, Peter Walker & Selwyn Goldsmith

Norfolk 2 – Debbie Pye, Debbie Sparham, Jack Pye, Jon Sparham

National Under 18s

Norfolk 1 – Morgan Warnes

Norfolk 2 – Owen Cranston

Norfolk 3 – Ryan Fox

                                                                                                    Posted 13-1-16

Kirby Bedon into Norwich Cup Semi-Finals

After a tight first half at Sprowston visitors Kirby Bedon took control in the second half to secure a place in the Norwich Cup Semi-Finals. Liz Mason, Les Harman & Terry Fletcher gave the hosts a winning start beating Phil Watson’s triple 8-6 but Peter Johnson, Joan Costello & Gerald Chilvers replied with a 7-5 win against Peter Smart’s triple to ensure the first session was drawn. The second session was also drawn as Sprowston’s David Dewing & Margaret Harman beat Carol & John Aggas 8-3 but the visitors gained an advantage on shots as Teresa & Selwyn Goldsmith beat Maureen & George Munford 10-0. After the break Kirby moved ahead by winning both triples games. Jill Watson, Jan Hewitt & Phil Watson beat Peter Smart’s triple 8-6 while Gerald Chilvers’ triple scored their second win of the night beating Terry Fletcher’s triple 8-3. This left Kirby needing just one point from the final session of pairs to secure victory but they took all four points again as Teresa & Selwyn Goldsmith beat David Dewing & Margaret Harman 11-2 and Carol & John Aggas beat the Munford pairing by 8-4 to give Kirby Bedon a 12-4 away win. In the South Norfolk League Hempnall look back on track after a 10-0 home win against Hingham. Jack Pye’s triple won 24-6 while Neil Davidson won by 19-6. In the top of the table clash Diss were held to a 5-5 draw at home by visitors Horsford with a great 25-8 win for Graham Mobbs preserving the home team’s unbeaten record. In the other match played Horsford collected maximum points at home to Wreningham. In the City of Norwich League Horsford BC continued their good run with a 12-2 away win at Windows and remain top of the table. Horsford Heroes also had a great week though with a 12-2 win at Taverham and a 14-0 home win against Costessey keeping them in contention for the title. Other games saw Sprowston beat Jarrolds 10-4 and third placed First Bus win 11-3 at home to British Rail. Bure League action saw East Tuddenham maintain their pursuit of leaders Halvergate with an 8-2 away win at Horsford BC where Gillian Amos, Robin Amos & John Jeffery won 23-8. Horsford BC fared better at home to Hevingham where Dennis Seaton’s triple won 25-7 to help them to a 6-4 win. Horsford BC also added an 8-2 away win at Windows who have now lost eleven of their twelve games played. Vic Woods’ triple led the way for Coltishall at Horsford Heroes where the visitors won 7-3. Elaine Cole, Lianne Mills & Derek Sheldrake all skipped their triples to wins at Thorpe Marriott where Woodbastwick won 8-2. Breckland League champions Wymondham won 8-2 at Harling Griffins. Chris Mann’s triple won 30-11 with Irma Lowe putting in a strong performance at lead on her first visit to Harling. Jack Pye’s triple won by 23-9 and Melvyn Barker’s triple added a 23-17 win.

Pye & Davidson take early baths in Swedish Masters

Despite Hempnall’s Neil Davidson & Wymondham’s Jack Pye qualifying through their groups in the Swedish Masters they both made early exits in the knock out stages. Jack Pye reeled off five straight wins in his group but his hopes of glory were dashed as he was defeated 10-8 by Sweden’s Tommy Dahlgren in the first knock-out round. Neil Davidson qualified as the runner-up in his group behind Stephen Gale of the Isle of Man who beat Davidson when they met. In the first knock-out round Davidson lost 13-3 to another English competitor Michael Ivings who went on to reach the final where he lost 11-4 against Sweden’s Marcus Almen.

                                                                                                   Posted 11-1-16

Jason Woods beats his dad in County Triples Final

This season’s Norfolk County Triples Final produced a fascinating father & son battle at Hingham Sports & Social Club and it was the young generation who came out on top as Robbie Lamb of Halvergate and Bob Carter’s Jamie Forster & Jason Woods stormed to an 11-2 win against John Turner of East Tuddenham & Bob Carter’s Nigel Willard & Melvin Woods. Jason Woods plays in the Norfolk Premier team as number two with dad Melvin Woods at skip and it was obvious that Jason has learned much from the experience as he skipped his triple with distinction to the Norfolk County Triples title. The third place play-off also produced a one sided match with Kerry Greenacre of Haddiscoe, Keith Cooke of Halvergate & Selwyn Goldsmith of Kirby Bedon beating Lewis, Owen & Rob Cranston of County Council 11-1 with an end to spare. In comparison both semi-finals were fiercely fought and both needed an extra end to decide who went through to the finals. A measure was needed to determine the winners of the Jason Woods v Selwyn Goldsmith semi-final with Woods winning by 9-8. Melvin Woods’ triple also took a single on the extra end to beat Rob Cranston 8-7. In the quarter-finals Jason Woods triple beat Morgan Warnes, Simon Warnes & David Lamb by 7-6 after an extra end. Melvin Woods’ triple beat Ryan Fox, Donna Lamb & Roy Walker of Halvergate 10-4, Selwyn Goldsmith’s triple beat Thorpe Marriott’s Jenny Walker, Peter Walker & John Jarvis 12-1 while Rob Cranston’s triple beat Mick Harris of Windows, David Blundell of Wortwell & Chris Mann of Wymondham 9-6.   

Jamie Forster, Jason Woods & Robbie Lamb

John Turner, Nigel Willard & Melvin Woods

Day off for Norfolk County Team

The previously announced friendly at Hingham against the Northants Squad on 17-1-16 will no longer take place so the Norfolk Squad now have a day off.

                                                                                                                Posted 10-1-16

Derbyshire again for Nationals

The ESMBA website has now confirmed Church Gresley IBC as the venue for all six National Championship Final events. The National Mixed Fours will take place on Saturday 2-4-16 and the National Under 18’s on Sunday 3-4-16. The National Singles will be played on Thursday 7-4-16, National Pairs on Friday 8-4-16, National Fours on Saturday 9-4-16 and the National Triples on Sunday 10-4-16. The full address of the venue is Church Gresley Indoor Bowling Centre, Gresley Old Hall, Church Gresley, Swadlincote, Derbyshire, DE11 9QW. Hotels in the area include the following.

Travelodge, Burton A38 Northbound, Barton-under-Needwood, DE13 8EH

Premier Inn, Wellington Road, Burton-on-Trent, DE14 2DQ

Best Western, Appleby Park Hotel, Swadlincote, DE12 7AP

Holiday Inn Express, 2nd Avenue Centrum 100, Burton-on-Trent, DE14 2WF

Mercure, Newton Solney, Burton-on-Trent, DE15 0SS

Dovecliff Hall Hotel, Dovecliff Road, Burton-on-Trent, DE13 0DJ

Riverside Hotel, Branston, Burton-on-Trent, DE14 3EP

Unicorn Inn, Repton Road, Burton-on-Trent, DE15 0SG


Davidson & Pye make Swedish bid

Hempnall’s Neil Davidson & Wymondham’s Jack Pye compete in the SMPT Swedish Masters this weekend. Four time Norfolk Singles champion Neil Davidson should progress through Group 15 which comprises of Norway’s Lars-Rune Lauritzen & Oyvind Amundsen, Sweden’s Sven Erik Almen & Nicolina Borg and Isle of Man’s Stephen Gale. Young Wymondham ace Jack Pye has been drawn in Group 13 and will play Sweden’s Dick Almen, Bente Dahlgren & Stig Albrektsson, Ireland’s Diane Bell and Richard Ivings of England. Pick of the games in the group stages include Mark Beattie of Ireland, current leader in the SMPT World Rankings, against England’s Bronagh Toleman in Group 11 and Belgium’s Jonathan Payne against England’s Essex star Dom Reed in Group 6. England’s Stephen Proctor & James Smith stand a great chance progressing through 2. Defending champion Cecil Dillon of Ireland will be attempting to become the first bowler to successfully defend the title and is almost certain to feature in the latter stages of the event.


Daventry IBC confirmed as I.C.C venue

Daventry IBC has been confirmed as the venue for both Norfolk matches in the I.C.C Preliminary rounds that are to take place on Sunday 31st January. Norfolk Premier will face West Sussex Premier while Norfolk “A” will play North Yorkshire. It is a perfect venue for the matches with the distance from Norfolk, West Sussex and North Yorkshire to the venue almost the same. Other games taking place at Daventry on the same day are Kent Premier against either Cheshire or Gloucestershire and Surrey “A” v Worcestershire “A”.  Hereford will be the venue for the West Mids Premier v Dorset Premier game while Surrey Premier will face Somerset Premier in Hampshire.

                                                                                                     Posted 6-1-16

Wymondham win County Fours title

The Wymondham rink of Chris Mann, Debbie Sparham, Jack Pye & Jon Sparham are the new Norfolk County Fours champions after a dramatic comeback saw them score three shots on the last scheduled end to level the match before winning the extra end against Nigel Willard, Jason Woods, John Turner & Melvin Woods of Bob Carter & East Tuddenham. Melvin Woods’ rink had looked favourites going into the last end 8-5 up but with his last bowl Jon Sparham levelled the game. Melvin Woods’ rink attempted to ditch the jack with the first bowl of the extra end but Nigel Willard missed the jack. Wymondham decided to use the same tactic but Chris Mann also missed with his first wood. Nigel Willard then elected to draw in a toucher with his second bowl but Chris Mann replied with an accurate attacking shot and ditched the jack leaving it about four inches from his bowl which was also in the ditch. Melvin Woods’ rink then had no option other than to try and fire Willard’s toucher into the ditch but Jason Woods, John Turner & Melvin Woods all failed with their attempts leaving the Wymondham rink celebrating a 9-8 victory. The third place play-off also went to an extra end when Kirby Bedon’s Jill Watson, Teresa Goldsmith, Phil Watson & Selwyn Goldsmith drew 4-4 in a low scoring game against Mikey George of Wymondham, Jamie Forster of Bob Carter, Morgan Warnes of Horsford BC & Neil Davidson of Hempnall. Davidson’s rink also used the tactic of ditching the jack early on but the jack and bowl split away from each other leaving both rinks attempting to draw to the line for the winning shot. After several unsuccessful attempts by players on both sides the Kirby Bedon skip drew around a cluster of short woods to the ditch line to take shot and a 5-4 win. Both semi-finals produced one sided matches with Melvin Woods’ rink beating Neil Davidson’s rink 17-1 while Jon Sparham’s rink beat Selwyn Goldsmith’s rink 11-1. In the quarter-finals Jon Sparahm beat Terry Newby 7-5, Melvin Woods beat David Lamb 7-4, Selwyn Goldsmith beat Bob Oatway 11-6 and Neil Davidson beat Paul Baker 13-6. 


Norfolk Fours Champions Debbie Sparham, Jon Sparham, Chris Mann & Jack Pye

County Fours R/Ups John Turner, Nigel Willard, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods

Champions move top

Defending City of Norwich League champions Horsford BC are the new leaders after two emphatic home wins. They cruised to a maximum 14-0 win against Jarrolds and then beat bottom of the table Taverham by 13-1. Meanwhile First Bus, who had headed the table the previous week, crashed to a 10-4 defeat at Sprowston Sports. In the other match County Council won 10-4 at home to Windows.


Frank Edy Funeral arrangements

We have been advised of the following details regarding the funeral. The service will take place at Taverham Church on Tuesday 5th January at 10.30am and afterwards at Wensum Valley Golf Club for a buffet at 12 noon. Bowlers who are intending to be at Wensum Valley Golf Club after the funeral are asked to contact Sue Hunt on 01603-868093 or e-mail Sue at

Frank Edy pictured in Norfolk Over 60s colours

Heroes halt the Bus run

First Bus remain top of the City of Norwich League but only just after Horsford Heroes ran out 12-2 winners when the teams met at St Faiths. Costessey took full advantage of the leaders slip-up by beating Jarrolds 12-2 and are now only one point behind First Bus in the table. Horsford Heroes are third six points behind the leaders but have a game in hand over both the top two teams. Thorpe Marriott have made a slow start fixtures wise and have four games in hand, their 14-0 maximum home win against Framingham Earl will send out a warning to the leading pack that they are on a roll. At the bottom end of the table County Council won 12-2 at British Rail while Sprowston Sports continue to get their season on track beating Deaf Sports 10-4.

Wymondham all the way

It is still looking like its going to be Wymondham retaining the Breckland League title after another massive win. It was no surprise that new-boys Shropham were unable to avoid a 10-0 home defeat as the far more experienced visitors put their foot on the gas with Jon Sparham winning 31-8 and Chris Mann winning 30-6. In their previous match Wymondham beat Harling Griffins 10-0 scoring 108 shots against just 18. Connaught “A” won 6-4 at Hingham where Lee Fallows’ triple won 18-12. Forncett were held to a 5-5 home draw by Harling Unicorns despite Peter Lock winning 22-9.

Halvergate unbeaten in Bure

Defending Bure League champions Halvergate top the table after an 8-2 win at Horsford BC where Simon Warnes’ triple won 19-9, David Lamb won 19-11 and Morgan Warnes won 15-8. East Tuddenham though are still in contention and will be pleased with a 9-1 home win against Thorpe Marriott in which Melvin Woods’ triple won 14-6, Chris Mann won 16-10 and John Turner won 14-11. Sylvia Turner’s triple salvaged a point for the visitors holding Robin Amos to an 11-11 draw. Thorpe Marriott fared better away to Windows where they won 8-2 with Tony Turner their most successful skip beating Mike Boswell’s triple 17-6 while Richard Perkins added a 17-11 win and Sylvia Turner won 14-10. Avril Walker scored Windows only win beating George Clarke 14-13. Windows also lost 8-2 at Hevingham where Maurice Kemp won 21-6 and Pat Williamson won 22-12. Mike Boswell scored Windows' only win beating David Sharpe 15-9. Woodbastwick beat Heroes 8-2 in a high scoring match that saw Lianne Mills win 25-13 and Peter Jablonowski win 20-2. Coltishall beat Horsford BC 8-2 with Margaret Harman winning 25-7 and George Munford winning 24-7.

Tight at the top in South Norfolk

Although Diss hold an eight point lead at the top of the South Norfolk League their two closest rivals each have a match in hand. Connaught are in second place after a resounding 10-0 home win against Saxlingham Nethergate in which Sheila Bragg produced a 19-11 win. Third placed Hempnall kept up the pressure with an 8-2 win at Horsford where Paul Baker’s triples 20-7 result was the best win of the night. Horsford returned to winning ways at Hingham where Sue Fox won 18-5 and Peter Fox won 21-7 in an 8-2 away win.


Greenacre & Goldsmith win Norfolk County Pairs title

Kerry Greenacre of Haddiscoe & Selwyn Goldsmith of Kirby Bedon lifted their second county title of the season together after beating Wymondham’s Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye in an entertaining Norfolk County Pairs Final at Hingham Sports & Social Club. The Wymondham pair started brightly moving into an early lead against Greenacre & Goldsmith who had previously looked dominant throughout their previous games but in the final made a slow start. Despite struggling to find the pace of the mat they kept in touch of the confident Wymondham pair. On the penultimate end Sparham & Pye looked favourites to win three shots up and holding on the mat but Goldsmith took the jack through with a backhand wood to collect two shots. This left the Wymondham pairing just one shot ahead going into the final end. Despite Kerry Greenacre playing two good length bowls Debbie Sparham drew in two great woods behind the jack to hold shot. Goldsmith drew his opening bowl onto Debbie Sparham’s bowls to take shot but Jack Pye’s opening bowl was slightly wide of its intended target taking out both Debbie Sparham’s bowls. Selwyn Goldsmith then drew in on the forehand with his final bowl of the match to leave his pair holding four shots. With a Debbie Sparham bowl at the back of the mat Jack Pye attacked on the backhand with his last bowl and the young Norfolk Premier star looked to be dead on target. Unfortunately for Pye it glanced off one of Goldsmith’s woods and despite taking that bowl out of the head he failed to contact the jack and ran through leaving Kerry Greenacre & Selwyn Goldsmith holding three shots and a 9-7 win to earn them the Norfolk County Pairs title, their second county title victory together in three weeks. It was Kerry Greenacre’s first ever County Pairs title and Selwyn Goldsmith’s fourth County Pairs success after previously winning the title in 1997, 2003 & 2004 with Teresa Goldsmith. The third place play-off was won by defending champions Mikey George & Jon Sparham of Wymondham who beat Kevin Watson & Steven Lamb of Halvergate 15-9. In the semi-finals Greenacre & Goldsmith had eased their way to a 13-4 win against the Halvergate pair while Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye had beaten Mikey George & Jon Sparham 10-6 in an all Wymondham clash which pitted husband against wife. Wymondham’s Roger Steele & Hempnall’s Neil Davidson had been fancied by some but they went down 10-3 against the eventual champions in the quarter-finals. Other quarter-final results saw Kevin Watson & Steven Lamb beat Robert Howlett & John Turner 7-6, Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye beat Halvergate’s Donna & David Lamb 10-2 and Mikey George & Jon Sparham beat Owen Cranston & Chris Mann 14-0. It proved to be a perfect day for Kerry Greenacre & Selwyn Goldsmith as they won all their three group games against Jason & Melvin Woods of Bob Carter, Morgan & Simon Warnes of Horsford BC & Wymondham’s Billie & Melvyn Barker before winning their Last 16 match by 10-1 against Lee Fallows & Sheila Bragg of Connaught. Before the start of play bowlers observed a minutes silence in memory of Bob Carter’s Frank Edy who had passed away the previous morning.


Kerry Greenacre & Selwyn Goldsmith

Jack Pye & Debbie Sparham

I.C.C knock-out rounds announced

The Inter-County Championship knock-out rounds have been announced and Norfolk Premier have been drawn to play West Sussex Premier on 31-1-16 and if they win will go on to face the defending champions Hampshire Premier in the quarter-finals on the weekend of 13/14th of February. West Sussex Premier, just like Norfolk, finished the group stages unbeaten with three wins and a draw but finished in second place behind Kent Premier. Norfolk “A” has been unfortunate in the draw for their knock-out section. With nine groups of three teams this season two preliminary rounds have to be played to get down to the correct number of teams for the quarter-finals. While the runners-up of groups 1, 3, 4, 6 & 7 go straight through to the second preliminary round the runners-up from groups 2, 5, 8 & 9 all face an extra preliminary round on 31-1-16. The draw has paired Norfolk “A” with North Yorkshire who played in the I.C.C Premier section in previous seasons but this season dropped into the “A” Team competition. The winners of the Norfolk “A” v North Yorkshire match will meet West Sussex “A” on either 6-2-16 or 7-2-16. The venues of the games have yet to be announced.  

Rest in Peace Frank Edy

The NCSMBA is sad to learn that Frank Edy, of the Bob Carter Centre, passed away this morning. Frank was a long time Fixtures Secretary of the Carter club attending AGM’s and arranging league & cup fixtures for Carter. He also served on the NCSMBA Management Committee as Assistant Competition Secretary from 2004 to 2007. He first started playing short mat bowls for Taverham before switching to Bob Carter and was a member of a successful Carter team winning many championship and cup awards. The NCSMBA wish to extend their sincere condolences to Frank’s family as do the Bob Carter club. Funeral details will be published on this site when they are announced.

                                                                                                   Posted 19-12-15

Norfolk Over 60s celebrate at the Clocktower

Not far short of seventy Norfolk Over 60s bowlers enjoyed a three course Christmas Dinner at Castle Carvery. Norfolk Over 60s Organiser Teresa Goldsmith wished all Squad Members a Happy Christmas and made presentations to squad members for their work over the year for the Norfolk Over 60s that meet fortnightly at Hingham Sports & Social Club, compete in the Eastern England Over 60s League and also enjoy friendies and trips away organised by Teresa. Senior Squad member Geoff Payne thanked Teresa for the work she does on behalf of the Over 60s and made a presentation to Teresa, and NCSMBA Chairman Selwyn Goldsmith, for their work on behalf of the squad. A draw was made for a ticket for two to visit Potters Resort for one day of the World Bowls, which was donated to the Over 60s by Potters Resort, and this was won by Tony Oram of Wortwell. Some members arrived slightly late after being delayed by heavy traffic after an accident on the A11. Members were concerned to hear that Eddie & Joan Costello were unable to attend as Eddie had been taken ill and had been admitted to the N & N University Hospital at Colney.

          Graham Tweed, John Jarvis, Peter Fox, Sue Fox & Wendy Tweed at the Over 60s Xmas Dinner 

                                  Diane Halford, Diane Boswell, Keith Halford & Mike Boswell

                                                                         Its Christmas!

Unbeaten Norfolk Premier finish runner-up

Despite finishing their I.C.C Group 2 fixtures unbeaten with three wins and a draw Norfolk Premier finished as runner-up in the group behind West Mids. A 23-17 away win for West Mids against Northants sealed top spot although Norfolk earned bragging rights achieving a home and away double against West Mids. A massive 33-7 home win for West Mids against Northants earlier in the season proved vital in securing their position in the group.

                                                                                                                   Posted 16-12-15

Potters announce Jane McDonald as top of the bill for Potters Cup Weekend

For those short mat bowlers booking the three night option on the Potters Cup Weekend in September 2016 Potters Resort have announced that Jane McDonald of “The Cruise”, “Loose Women” & “Cats” fame will top the bill in the Atlas Theatre on the Sunday night. Her album “Jane McDonald” reached number one in the UK Album charts and went double platinum while the album “Jane” reached number seven. Jane was also selected by Andrew Lloyd Webber to star as the lead character Grizabella in the 2015 revival of “Cats” in which she received rave reviews in the press. The Potters Cup Weekend will run from Friday 23-9-16 and is a full board (4 meals a day) bowls break featuring the Potters Short Mat Bowls Cup played in the famous International Arena. The 3 Night option also includes a fabulous five course dinner with selected wines on the Sunday night in the Garden Restaurant before Jane McDonald performs in the theatre. Full details of the break, including booking details, can be found by clicking on the Open Competitions tab and then clicking on “Potters Cup” on the drop down bar. The special price offered on this 3 Night Option for short mat bowlers is £239.50, considerably lower than the normal brochure price. The Potters Cup Weekend is now in its sixteenth year and is regarded by many as the best short mat bowls weekend of the year at a 5* resort and not to be missed. For details click on  Potters Cup

           Jane McDonald  


Mikey George & Jon Sparham to defend title

The Norfolk County Pairs Championship & National Championship Qualifier will take place at Hingham Sports & Social Club on Sunday 20-12-15 with play scheduled to start at 9.30am. Defending champions Mikey George & Jon Sparham of Wymondham have been drawn out in Group “H” with Bob Carter’s Jamie Forster & three time winner Nigel Willard likely to be their main obstacle, Willard won the title three times in 2005/6, 2007/8 & 2009/10. The group is made up by Thorpe Marriott’s Sheila & Ted Redwood and Norfolk Over 60s bowlers Margaret & John Poynter. 2013/14 champions Jason & Melvin Woods of Bob Carter have been drawn out in a strong looking Group “B”. Three time winner Selwyn Goldsmith of Kirby Bedon, playing this season with Haddiscoe’s Kerry Greenacre, and Horsford BC & England bowlers Morgan & Simon Warnes are also in this group along with Wymondham’s husband & wife pairing Melvyn & Billie Barker.  

Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye of Wymondham will be pleased with the draw that makes them firm favourites to win Group “C”. Jack Pye has a good track record in the County Pairs in recent years having won with Josh Baxter in 2012/13 and finishing runner-up with Ollie Allen last season. Playing with Debbie Sparham, equally impressive whether drawing or using weight, should make this pair strong contenders for the title. The other pairs in Group “C” are Kirby Bedon’s Joan Costello & Gerald Chilvers, Halvergate’s Kevin Watson & Steven Lamb and Laura Hawksworth of Deaf Sports playing with Wortwell’s Dave Blundell. Chris “Blazer” Mann of Wymondham, who won the title once before in 2010/11 with Andrew Stratton, is this year playing with young County Council & Norfolk bowler Owen Cranston in Group “G” and their main competition could be Halvergate & England bowler Keith Cooke who is partnered by Roy Walker. Connaught’s Steve Hall & Sheila Bragg will also fancy their chances and the group is completed by Eddie Costello of First Bus & Hinghaml’s Keith Thomas.

Despite dominating the Norfolk Singles Championship in recent seasons the Norfolk County Pairs title has proved strangely elusive for Hempnall’s Neil Davidson. The nearest he has ever come to lifting the title was in 2009/10 when he finished runner-up with Paul Baker. This time around he is partnered in Group “A” by Wymondham’s Debbie Pye and Davidson finds himself up against former playing partner Paul Baker of Hempnall who is this year playing with County Council & Norfolk bowler Rob Cranston. Carleton Rode father and son Terry & Karl Newby have established themselves in the Norfolk County Squad and as a pair they could also make life very difficult for Davidson in this group. The remaining pair in Group “A” is Andrew Jackson of Wymondham & John Jeffery of Deaf Sports, both of whom are Norfolk players and both eager to make a mark.

Group “E” favourites are Robert Howlett of Bob Carter & John Turner of East Tuddenham, two players with vast experience in Norfolk County Championships John Turner has won the title once which was in 1998/99 with Chrissie Turner.  Halvergate & England bowler David Lamb has also won the title just once which was in 2011/12 with Jon Sparham, this year he is paired with his wife Donna Lamb. Two Deaf Sports pairs are also in this group, Gillian & Robin Amos and Kirk Atkins & Dennis Kemble. Ray & Robbie Lamb of Halvergate start as favourites to win Group “D” which also includes County Council’s Norfolk player Lewis Cranston playing with club colleague Nigel Hurn. Thorpe Marriott’s Janet Pinchen is playing with David Knights of Horsford BC while Trish Taylor & Graham Mobbs of Diss have the ability to spring a surprise on the day.

There are two pairs in Group “F” who have previously been runners-up in the Norfolk Pairs and they will be keen to go one better this year. Jenny & Peter Walker of Thorpe Marriott lost in the 2013/14 final and Elaine & Bob Oatway of First Bus lost in the 2005/06 final. Another Thorpe Marriott pairing has also been drawn in this group, Trevor Pinchen & John Jarvis. The group is completed by the inclusion of Sprowston & Norfolk bowlers George Munford & David Dewing in the only group comprising all Norfolk County Squad players.

It would be greatly appreciated if bowlers taking part could bring a raffle prize to donate in aid of NCSMBA Funds.

Since the election of Chris Mann as Norfolk County Competition Secretary, & Jon Sparham as Assistant Competition Secretary, the introduction of County Competition draws on the NCSMBA Facebook page has proved popular with Norfolk bowlers. A transitional year can be difficult, and a steep learning curve for those involved, but so far these two young men have done a great job in improving the presentation of Norfolk County Championship events.

                                                                                                                         Posted 14-12-15

Norfolk “A” secure runner-up spot

Norfolk “A” were away to Suffolk in the last I.C.C Group 2 match to be played and needed to score a minimum of sixteen points from the forty on offer to make sure of second place ahead of their local rivals. Norfolk were keen to make a good start but found their opponents were equally determined to make it through to the knock-out stages and the opening session was drawn. Both Norfolk pairs were successful with Karl & Terry Newby winning 15-9 & John Jeffery & Melvyn Barker winning 15-10 but Suffolk’s Dennis Miller & David Baker both won in the singles. The second session of triples & rinks earned the home side a 10-6 points lead as Norfolk struggled to make headway. The visitors only points came from an 8-8 draw for Maureen Munford, Colin Coman & George Munford and a 10-10 draw for Janet Pinchen, Gerald Chilvers, Trevor Pinchen & George Clarke. Norfolk’s hopes of gaining the sixteen points they needed began to look an even more difficult task when the singles & pairs returned to the mats. Suffolk’s singles players Miller & Baker wrapped up all ten points in their discipline. Norfolk “A” Team Captain Mike Boswell led David Baker 11-10 with two ends to go before losing 13-11 while Sprowston’s David Dewing was just one shot down with three ends remaining against Dennis Miller before the Suffolk player scored five shots without reply to win 17-11. Karl & Terry Newby were in excellent form against L & D Andrews racing to a 22-6 win, their second win of the day for Norfolk but that proved to be the only win of the session as John Jeffery & Melvyn Barker went down 13-10. Norfolk “A” needed six points from the final session and it proved to be a tense one. Any chance of picking up the bonus points in the triples quickly receded as George Munford’s triple suffered a second half collapse going down 19-6. A vital two points were collected in the other triples game though as Joan Costello, Graham Tweed & John Jarvis fought their way to a hard earned 10-6 win. This left the fours needing to finish the job for Norfolk and they took Norfolk over the finishing line as they both won. George Clarke’s rink won by 11-6 while Sheila Redwood, Ray Lamb, Steven Lamb & Graham Mobbs won 14-8. When the bonus points were added Suffolk had won the match 22-18 but it was Norfolk who finished in second place behind Cambs to progress into the knock-out stages to be played in the New Year. Before the match Graham Mobbs was presented with his plaque to mark his third match for Norfolk, Suffolk President David Baker was asked to do this.  


Suffolk President David Baker presents Graham Mobbs with his County Squad Certificate


Melly Woods hits two dozen!

East Tuddenham achieved a resounding 10-0 home win against Horsford BC in the Bure League. Linda Chadwick, Les Chadwick & Melvin Woods beat Paul Isgate’s triple 24-3 while Geraldine Potter, Laura Hawksworth & Chris Mann beat Ernie Mills 19-5 in the evening’s biggest wins. Woodbastwick’s visit to East Tuddenham though resulted in a 5-5 stalemate despite Tuddenham winning on two mats and drawing the other. The Chadwick-Chadwick-Woods triple beat Lianne Mills by one shot while Albert Palgrave, Chrissie Turner & John Turner also won by one shot against Derek Sheldrake’s triple. K Barrie, B Frost & Peter Jablonowski hit back for Woodbastwick beating Robin Amos 14-8 while the remaining game between John Jefferies & Elane Cole ended in a 14-14 draw. Kirby Bedon won three times to improve their position in the table. A 10-0 win at Windows saw Peter Johnson, Shirley Brown & Joe Brown record a 22-6 win against David Walker’s triple while Jill Watson, Joan Costello & Phil Watson beat Russell Daynes’ triple 22-12. At Hevingham Kirby had to settle for an 8-2 win with Peter Johnson, Jimmy Dye & Gerald Chilvers top scoring beating Rex Cox 29-11 and Teresa Goldsmith, Joan Costello & Selwyn Goldsmith winning 21-11 after a late flourish of shots. Maurice Kemp’s triple earned Hevingham’s two points beating Phil Watson’s triple 18-12. Kirby Bedon also won 8-2 at Thorpe Marriott where Joe Brown’s triple won 18-7 against George Clarke, Gerald Chilvers beat Ted Redwood 16-4 & Selwyn Goldsmith’s triple beat Richard Perkins triple 18-3. Marjorie Hall scored Marriott’s only win beating Phil Watson 14-13. Horsford Heroes took maximum points at home to Hevingham with two 18-8 wins by Chris Woodhouse’s triple and Richard Dix’s triple the best wins of the match. They lost their next home match at home to defending champions Halvergate though as Keith Cooke’s triple beat Richard Dix 23-7 and Simon Warnes’ triple beat Vic Webster 21-9.


Fierce fight for runners-up spot

With Woodbastwick Owls forty points clear of the field in the Coastal League the only battle left seems to be for the runners-up spot. Bradwell Dynamos are on 119 points after a 13-5 win away to Woodbastwick Eagles and a 14-4 win at Hemsby Harvesters. Bradwell Beacons are just four points behind them after a 12-6 home win against Woodbastwick Eagles and a 13-5 home win against South Walsham. Woodbastwick Eagles are in third place on 108 points after beating South Walsham 11-7.

                                                                                                          Posted 10-12-15

Coltishall share points at Halvergate

Bure League champions Halvergate had to settle for a 5-5 draw after visitors Coltishall won on two mats and drew on another. Halvergate avoided a home defeat due to a solid performance by David Knights, Jackie Smith & Simon Warnes whose win against Margaret Munford, Terry Fletcher & George Munford proved just enough to give the home side 60 shots against Coltishall’s 58 to earn them the match points. Carol Aggas, Jean Barnett & John Aggas gave the visitors a winning start beating Rob Cranston’s triple 14-12 while Simon Warnes’ triple beat George Munford 21-12. Jeffrey Sandell, Peter Barnett & Margaret Harman gave Coltishall another two points beating Robbie Lamb’s triple 14-9 while David Lamb’s triple were held to an 18-18 draw by Margaret Reynolds, Malcolm Reynolds & Les Harman.   

                                                                                                                Posted 8-12-15

Keith Hawkins resigns as ESMBA Administration Officer

In a move that will come as a shock to some Keith Hawkins has tendered his resignation from the key Administration Officer position at the ESMBA. The ESMBA has issued a statement on their website which is posted below. Hawkins is thought to have become frustrated by the lack of progress at ESMBA level on various issues including Child Protection policies. It is also thought by some that he had wanted to publish next season’s I.C.C programme but that this was blocked by the ESMBA Committee. Delegates voted at the last ESMBA Annual General Meeting that they wanted the I.C.C groups restored to four or five teams as previously played but it is thought that there was some pressure on Hawkins to keep the groups at their new three team size that has been heavily criticized by many counties. The way forward for the ESMBA is now difficult with so much of its work now in the hands of its Administration Officer. Herbie Bowden is already being spoken of as a possible replacement for Hawkins. Former Joint Administrator Chris Hopkins has made it clear that he will not put his name forward for the position.   

                                                      ESMBA STATEMENT 
Following the 30 day notice tendered by Keith Hawkins as the ESMBA Administration Officer, the management committee thank him for his past service and have agreed to accept his immediate resignation and to re allocate his duties.
All correspondences should now be forwarded to the Chairman, or 24 Burrow Road, Chigwell, Essex IG7 4HQ 07788414311

Chris Hopkins resigns from all Northants posts

Former ESMBA Chairman Chris Hopkins has resigned from all positions on the Northamptonshire CSMBA including the Chairman’s position. It is thought that Hopkins has been asked to reconsider his position but is adamant that he has had enough following a turbulent couple of weeks for him. Recent troubles in Northants came to a head during last week-ends I.C.C clash with Norfolk Premier when a member of Hopkins’ triple walked off the mat during their second game refusing to continue. It is thought that subsequently a move has been made to charge Hopkins with bullying a fellow player, a charge that Hopkins vigorously refutes. Chris Hopkins has been the driving force of Northants SMBA for many, many years as he was of the ESMBA as Chairman. It is thought that Hopkins will continue to play and will be in Northants team for the visit of West Mids this coming weekend. It is believed that the current Vice-Chairman of Northants does not want to step up to the Chairman’s role and that Brian Nelson is likely to be approached by the Northants Committee to be co-opted until the next AGM. 

                                                                                                         Posted 7-12-15

Goldsmith, Greenacre & Walkers win Norfolk Mixed Fours title

A tremendous Norfolk County Mixed Fours final went to an extra end before being decided by the final bowl on the tie break end. Haddiscoe’s Kerry Greenacre, Jenny & Peter Walker of Thorpe Marriott and Kirby Bedon’s Selwyn Goldsmith emerged victorious after taking three shots against Wymondham’s Debbie Pye, Debbie Sparham, Jack Pye & Jon Sparham when Goldsmith played a carefully paced weighted wood to clip Wymondham’s shot bowl out of a head that looked to be almost perfectly protected by short woods. The final had been a fascinating one with little to separate the rinks early on and the score was level at just 3-3 after five ends. The Wymondham rink edged ahead over the next two ends to move into a 6-3 lead but the tenacity of Goldsmith’s rink kept them in the match and with one end to go Jon Sparham’s rink led by just one shot. Sparham’s rink found themselves under intense pressure on the last scheduled end but the Wymondham skip got them out of trouble and a measure was needed to decide shot wood which was awarded to Goldsmith’s rink. This forced an extra end and although winning the toss Goldsmith elected to give the jack to Wymondham to ensure he would have the final bowl of the end, this decision would prove to be vital. With his last bowl of the extra end Jon Sparham took shot for the Wymondham rink and it looked as if the title was theirs with the backhand totally covered and short bowls in front. The Kirby Bedon skip decided his only option was to play a weighted wood fractionally missing the blocker to try and hit the edge of Wymondham’s holding wood, that he could barely see, to move it out of the head. To the joy of his rink the bowl proved to be dead on target and earn them the County Mixed Fours title bringing to an end a fantastic final. The third place play-off resulted in a big 17-3 win for David Lamb’s rink against Malcolm Reynolds. In the semi-finals Goldsmith’s rink had faced England bowlers Morgan Warnes, Keith Cooke & David Lamb who were playing with Donna Lamb at lead. The Halvergate rink struggled to get into the game and found themselves 9-3 down after six ends, eventually losing 13-7. In the other semi-final Jon Sparham’s rink proved too strong for Joan Costello & Peter Johnson of Kirby Bedon and Margaret & Malcolm Reynolds of Coltishall with the Wymondham rink running out 14-4 winners. In the group stages Jean, Jason & Melly Woods, playing with Lesley Crowe of First Bus, started in excellent form beating Bob Oatway’s Connaught/First Bus rink 19-7 but then it all went wrong as they crashed to a 22-3 defeat against David Lamb’s rink. There was much interest in Chris “Blazerman” Mann’s new look rink comprising of Deaf Sports players Rosemary Hall, Laura Hawksworth & John Jefferies but a 14-7 opening game defeat to Malcolm Reynolds’ rink proved fatal to their chances of progressing.

                                ChampionsSelwyn Goldsmith, Kerry Greenacre, Jenny Walker, Peter Walker

Runners-up Jack Pye, Debbie Pye, Debs Sparham, Jon Sparham

 Under 18s Qualifier won by Morgan Warnes

Norfolk’s National Under 18s Quakifier was won by Morgan Warnes of Horsford BC &England. Fellow Norfolk Squad player Owen Cranston finished second with Ryan Fox third.

                                          Morgan Warnes will represent Norfolk in the National Under 18s

No joy in SMPT World Fours Masters for Davidson

There was no joy for Norfolk’s Jack Pye, Chris Mann & Neil Davidson, playing with Vincent Dornan at lead, in the SMPT World Fours Masters played at Bromsgrove IBC today. A 10-9 win against E & C Pavey, M Allen & A Thompson of England and a 17-6 win against Ireland’s T Cushnahan, S Cushnahan, J Cushnahan & F Cunningham was enough to earn them the runner-up spot in Group 5 despite losing 9-8 to C Martin, T Clough, M Harries & A Morgan of Wales. This took them into the Last 16 knockout round where they found themselves up against Devon’s James Smith, Michael Ivings, Paul Pomeroy & James Trott, all ever presents this season in the Devon Premier team. That proved to be their last outing of the day as the Devon rink won 10-5 to move into the quarter-finals.   


Wymondham edge out Connaught “A” in Breckland

Wymondham maintained their unbeaten record in the Breckland League after defeating visitors Connaught “A” by 6-4. Billie Barker, Andrew Jackson & Chris Mann gave the home side a great shots advantage with a 30-11 first half win against Sylvia Parsons’ triple. Connaught’s Mike Parsons, Derek Liles & Owen Secker hit back after trailing 13-6 to Wymondham’s David Norfolk, Roger Steele & Jon Sparham, they scored eleven shots against just one to cap a superb comeback winning 17-14. After the break Jack Pye’s Wymondham triple won 20-15 while Connaught’s Sheila Bragg beat Debbie Sparham 16-12 but Mann’s big first half win secured the match points. Despite losing the match Connaught will probably be more then satisfied to have taken four points at the home of title favourites Wymondham. Connaught “A” returned to winning ways beating Harling Unicorns 10-0 with Owen Secker, Derek Liles & Bill Adcock stroming to a 30-8 win. Third placed Carleton Rode proved too strong for visitors Banham as they collected maximum points. Top scorers were the Rode were Pamela Rush, Keith Buck & Karl Newby who won by 21-8 against Colin Smith, Will Hoggan & Bill Francis while Morris Taylor, Trish Taylor & Terry Newby won 22-13.

Defending champions move top

Defending City of Norwich League champions Horsford BC are top of the table after a convincing 13-1 away win at title rivals First Bus. The result leaves Horsford BC seven points clear of First Bus who led the table before this match that saw them suffer a bad home defeat. Jarrolds were second in the table last week but they slipped down to fourth after losing 12-2 at home to Thorpe Marriott. Costessey took full advantage of the defeats of Jarrolds & First Bus as they climbed into third place beating a struggling County Council 14-0. Council have collected just one win from seven games and are now just one place off the bottom of the table. Sprowston Sports have come through a difficult period for the club but can now see the light at the end of the tunnel after an impressive 12-2 away win at British Rail. In a mid-table clash Horsford Heroes won 12-2 at home to Deaf Sports. Both Costessey & County Council have two pairs into the City of Norwich League Pairs finals night. For Costessey Mike Ottaway & Barry Herman have qualified as well as Debbie & Jack Pye and for County Council Owen & Rob Cranston are through as well as Nigel Hurn & Lewis Cranston. Norfolk County team players Jenny Walker & John Jarvis will be flying the flag for Thorpe Marriott while Veronica Copland & Colin Emms of Framingham Earl are safely through. The two best runners-up who qualified are Jane James & Mark “The Marvel” Tuttle of Horsford Heroes and Bob & Sheila Andrews of Jarrolds.     

Home draw for Norwich Cup favourites

The Norwich Cup quarter-final draw has been kind to joint favourites Wymondham & Halvergate who were both handed home ties when the draw was conducted at Hevingham. Cup holders Wymondham entertain City of Norwich League side First Bus while Bure League champions Halvergate are at home to Breckland League side Hingham. Harling Rec, playing in the cup for the first time this season, are drawn at home to Thorpe Marriott and in the remaining tie Sprowston are at home to Kirby Bedon. The draw was made by Hevingham’s Alan Bunn and the play-by date for the ties is 22-1-16. Clubs are asked to contact each other to arrange the matches at their earliest convenience.

Hempnall maximums continue

Hempnall have taken a maximum sixteen points from their opening four matches in the Tens League after a 4-0 away win at Connaught. Paul Baker & Neil Davidson opened with a 19-10 pairs win against Ty Musk & Steve Hall but Diane Adcock, Bill Adcock & David Flatt reduced the halftime deficit to eight shots after beating Charlie Archer’s triple 16-15. Another home win came in the second half as Chris Musk & Bob Oatway beat Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye 12-9 but Hempnall secured all four points courtesy of a 23-8 win by Rob Cranson, Jon Sparham & Chris Mann against Elaine Oatway’s triple. Coltishall gained revenge for last weeks 4-0 defeat at Kirby Bedon by winning the return match by the same score. Kirby’s chances all but disappeared in the first half as Margaret Reynolds, Malcolm Reynolds & Les Harman beat Phil Watson’s triple 25-7. Carol & John Aggas added a 17-7 win against Billie Barker & Gerald Chilvers while Jean Barnett & Margaret Harman beat Peter Johnson & Selwyn Goldsmith 14-10 and George Munford’s triple beat Melvyn Barker’s triple by one shot. Halvergate took maximum points from their match at home to Hevingham thanks to big wins by their triples. David Knights, Ray Lamb & Robbie Lamb swept to a 30-9 win against Pat Williamson’s triple while Robin Amos added a 19-8 second half win against Joyce Vincent. Hevingham’s pairs though pushed the home side all the way with Rex Cox & David Sharpe drawing 12-12 with Donna & David Lamb while Betty Cox & Maurice Kemp went down by just 17-15 to Roy Walker & Keith Cooke.

                                                                                                                                                  Posted 5-12-15

Norfolk win in Northants on day of drama

Norfolk Premier moved back to the top of their I.C.C group with an excellent 25-15 away win at Northants on a day of drama for their opponents. The week leading to the fixture had proved difficult for Northants manager Chris Hopkins, the former ESMBA Chairman, as a dispute within the county led to some players refusing to play and an earlier incident at Northants IBC threatening to sour the relationship between the Northants SMBA and the bowls club. Prior to the match Hopkins informed his players he was to resign as Manager. The pressure on Hopkins grew during the match with the number two in Hopkins triple, Dale Thompson, walking off the mat halfway through their second game after exchanging views with his manager. Norfolk Manager Selwyn Goldsmith though was able to focus his attention purely on playing matters. He made major changes to the rinks bringing Peter Walker, Jenny Walker, Teresa Goldsmith and himself back into team. This was an effort to improve the poor points return in this discipline and his changes were to pay dividends by the end of this entertaining encounter. Norfolk made a great start in the first session of singles & pairs collecting six of the eight points. Hempnall’s Neil Davidson faced England’s Ed Sawbridge and could do no wrong as he stormed to a 15-6 win in the singles. In the other singles game Wymondham’s Chris Mann found Leigh Hall in brilliant form but pushed the Northants star all the way. With the score at 11-11 with four ends to go hopes were high of another singles win for Norfolk but Hall played the last three ends well to win 14-12. Norfolk won both pairs games in style with Simon Warnes of Horsford BC and Wymondham’s Jon Sparham beating Thelma Hopkins’ pair 18-8 while Halvergate’s David Lamb & Wymondham’s Jack Pye beat Fred Pearson and young England ace Calum Beale 15-9. In the second session the triples could not have been more evenly matched. While Morgan Warnes of Horsford BC, Debbie Sparham of Wymondham & Halvergate’s Keith Cooke won 16-5 the Bob Carter triple of Nigel Willard, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods lost by an identical score to Chris Hopkins’ triple. Norfolk’s new look fours entered the action with Lewis & Rob Cranston of County Council, Peter Walker of Thorpe Marriott and Bob Oatway of First Bus proving too hot for Chris Weston’s rink to handle as they won by an impressive 13-4. In the other fours game Jenny Walker of Thorpe Marriott, Teresa Goldsmith, Phil Watson & Selwyn Goldsmith of Kirby Bedon had to be content with a 7-7 stalemate against Alan Goodenough’s rink. Norfolk’s first setback of the day came in the next session as the singles and pairs returned to the mats. Leigh Hall was in blistering form for Northants making it difficult for Neil Davidson to get a foothold in the game. After ten ends Hall led 13-2 and there was no way back for the Norfolk Singles champion who eventually lost 17-7. Chris Mann has not got a great record against Ed Sawbridge and Norfolk’s worries mounted as Sawbridge won 20-9 to earn the singles bonus points for his team. Another defeat came in the pairs with Warnes & Sparham losing 15-7 to Calum Beale’s pair but Lamb & Pye scored their second win of the day beating Thelma Hopkins’ pair 14-10 to earn the bonus points for Norfolk. Much depended on the final session but Norfolk displayed great character to get the better of their opponents. Melvin Woods’ triple returned to winning ways with a 12-10 result and Keith Cooke’s triple beat Chris Hopkins’ triple in the match that saw Hopkins number two walk off the mat midway through the game. Bob Oatway’s four were drawing 6-6 after eight ends against Alan Goodenough but failed to score again as the Northants four recorded a 12-6 win. Player-Manager Selwyn Goldsmith and his rink also looked on their way to a defeat trailing 7-0 after five ends against Chris Weston but after they finally picked up a single on the sixth end Goldsmith switched to a minimum length jack. The move paid off big time and his rink scored another ten shots without reply to win 11-7 and earn the bonus points. The result leaves Norfolk Premier sixteen points clear of West Mids at the top of the group with just the Northants v West Mids match to be played.

                                                                                                                                     Posted 29-11-15

Day of drama for Northants' Chris Hopkins

Two wins for triples skip Keith Cooke

Norfolk Over 60s win at Cosgrove

Norfolk Over 60s do not have a great record away to Northants Over 60s but this week they powered to an excellent 31-19 away win in their Eastern England League match. It proved to be a great day for Margaret Reynolds, Malcolm Reynolds & Peter Fox who recorded three wins of 9-6, 8-6 & 9-3. Also unbeaten were Jenny Walker, Sue Fox & Mike Boswell who won 16-4 & 7-6 and added a 6-6 draw in their final game. After their previous result, a 35-15 win away to Cambs, Norfolk top the table with two home games to play against Cambs & Northants.

         Malcolm Reynolds, Margaret Reynolds & Peter Fox - maximum points for Norfolk Over 60s in Cosgrove

Diss move clear in South Norfolk

Graham Mobbs’ Diss triple powered their way to a convincing 29-4 win against Margaret Hunter’s Hingham triple in a South Norfolk League clash that saw the visitors open up an eleven point lead over defending champions Hempnall. Diss also won at Saxlingham Nethergate but this time by just 6-4. The result could have been a lot different as Geoff Briggs triple were 10-0 up after just three ends against Graham Mobbs. The Diss triple though made a superb comeback winning by 18-17. Saxlingham lost 10-0 at Wreningham where Colin Emms’ triple beat Geoff Payne by 22-3. Wreningham just failed to win their other home game against Hingham with the visitors snatching a 6-4 victory with a 16-9 Debbie Bunn win.

 Third time lucky for Kirby Bedon

After suffering a one shot Tens League defeat at home to Bob Carter and a 4-0 loss at Hempnall it was third time lucky for Kirby Bedon as they took maximum points at home to Coltishall. With only one point from five games Coltishall’s start to the season has proved difficult and things did not get any easier as Kirby’s Teresa & Selwyn Goldsmith beat Carol & John Aggas 19-6 in the first half pairs game while Gerald Chilvers’ triple came from behind to beat Les Harman’s Coltishall triple 13-10. Any hopes of a recovery after the break quickly subsided as Shirley Brown, Joan Costello & Joe Brown beat Vernon Bunn, Peter Barnett & Vic Woods 18-5 and in the pairs Jan Hewitt & Phil Watson beat Jean Barnett & Margaret Harman 19-12.

Horsford BC well positioned

A 12-2 home win against County Council saw defending City of Norwich League champions move into third place just behind First Bus & Jarrolds. Other results saw contenders Thorpe Marriott beat Taverham 14-0 and Horsford Heroes win 11-3 at British Rail.

                                                                                                             Posted 28-11-15

Hempnall ease past Halvergate in Challenge Cup 

After their 14-6 first leg win at Halvergate, Hempnall produced a 13-7 win at home to see them into the first round proper against Thorpe Marriott. In the singles Neil Davidson was unbeaten with a first session 9-6 win over David Lamb but was held to a 9-9 draw against Robbie Lamb in the second session. In the fours Lewis Cranston, Owen Cranston, Rob Cranston and Paul Baker did the damage for Hempnall with wins of 5-4 and 12-10. After a decent first session for Halvergate which saw them win it by 6-4, they would have hoped to build on the advantage of staying on he same mat for the second session but failed to make it count as they lost it 9-1. 


Rest in Peace Terry Crockett

The NCSMBA is saddened to learn of the sudden death of Terry Crockett of Watton SMBC. Terry will be remembered as a larger than life personality at Watton and a tough opponent on the mat. The NCSMBA would like to express their condolences to Pam and the family.


Rest in Peace Heather Winup

The NCSMBA is saddened to learn of the death of Heather Winup of Connaught, last year’s Lady President of the club and a former member of the Norfolk Over 60s. Our thoughts are with John and the family at this sad time.  The funeral will take place at All Saints Parish Church, Carleton Rode on Thursday 3rd December at 2pm. John and the family have requested family flowers only. Donations, to be shared between Papworth Hospital and Carleton Rode All Saints Church, can be sent to Andy Free Funeral Directors, Fairfields, High Street, Attleborough, NR17 2BT.  


Tuddenham title push

East Tuddenham kept up their Bure League title push by beating visitors Hevingham 10-0. Mother & son partnership Geraldine & Gerald Potter, with Chris Mann at lead, produced a 16-6 win against left hander David Sharpe that proved to be the night’s biggest win. It was a great home win for Horsford Heroes who crushed Horsford BC 10-0 with Peter Fox winning 24-5 & Jane James winning 23-11. Ex Carter players Margaret & Malcolm Reynolds, with Les Harman at skip, led the way for Coltishall against Windows with a resounding 26-7 win in an 8-2 points victory. Hevingham won 7-3 at home to Woodbastwick but almost lost the match points after Doreen Scarfe, Norma Jablonowski & Lianne Mills stormed to a 21-4 win. Hevingham just held on though to a 50 shots to 49 win to earn the two precious match points.


Connaught hang on for a 1-1 draw in Tens

Three narrow wins for home team Connaught did not look enough to earn the league points as Coltishall’s Margaret Reynolds, Malcolm Reynolds & Les Harman moved 12-4 up against Di Quadling, David Quadling & Elaine Oatway. But a late comeback saw the Connaught triple win four of the last six ends to reduce the deficit to 14-8 and earn a 1-1 draw as the teams finished level at 48-48 on shots.   

Norfolk “A” lose unbeaten record at Cambs

Norfolk “A” lost their unbeaten record as they suffered a heavy 27-13 defeat against Cambs at March IBC. The home side had a great start winning all four opening games in the singles & pairs to leave the visitors reeling. Both Norfolk pairs were well beaten but the singles games were close with Robin Amos of Deaf Sport going down 16-14 and Mike Boswell of Windows losing by just one shot. Norfolk fought back well in the next session winning three of the four games to cut the points deficit to 10-6. Joan Costello, Graham Tweed & John Jarvis won 15-6 while Ian Mills, Melvyn Barker & Graham Mobbs took three shots over the last two ends to win 14-13. In the fours Sheila Redwood, Ray Lamb, Steven Lamb & Colin Coman won their last three ends for a 9-7 win. All the good work was undone in the next session though as Cambs took three wins with only Mike Boswell delivering the goods beating Craig Buck 21-8. Damage limitation was the best Norfolk could hope for in the final session but once again were noticeably second best as Cambs won three of the four games to win 27-13 on points. Colin Coman’s rink were Norfolk’s only winners as they beat Colin Buck’s rink 10-6 for their second win of the day. Before the match Cambs manager and ex England player Joe Peters presented young Norfolk bowler Laura Hawksworth with her County Team plaque as she was playing her third game for Norfolk.

                                                                                                                Posted 21-11-15

                 Norfolk's Laura Hawksworth with Cambs Manager and former England player Joe Peters

World Bowls draw at Norfolk Over 60s

Anticipation is growing for the televised World Bowls at Potters Resort in Hopton-on-Sea and Norfolk Over 60s bowlers were keen to learn who had won tickets for the event when a draw was conducted at a Squad Day at Hingham Sports & Social Club. Potters Resort had generously provided Norfolk Over 60s Organiser Teresa Goldsmith with two pairs of tickets for the event and a raffle was held to raise funds for the Over 60s group who meet fortnightly at Hingham. Riley Newby, grandson of Over 60s members Terry & Sue Newby, was happy to draw the numbers out of a bag. The first winning tickets were won by David Chadwick who had confidently predicted that he would win after purchasing £5 worth of raffle tickets on the day. His optimism proved to be well founded as Riley drew out the first of the winning numbers. The winner of the second pair of tickets is proving more elusive to find. The number of the ticket still to be claimed is Green 162. The winner is asked to contact Teresa Goldsmith as soon as possible.

Lucky winner David Chadwick with Over 60s Organiser Teresa Goldsmith and Riley Newby.

Frank Edy invites his bowling friends to Bob Carter Centre

Frank Edy has invited all his bowling friends to have a drink on him at the Bob Carter Centre on Saturday 5th December at 7.30pm where nibbles will also be available. Frank’s brother in law Vic will be there. Bowling friends will be aware that Frank has been unwell for some time.

Defending Champions through in Bure Triples

The Bure Triples Championship heats were held this week and both the defending champions and runners-up, both from East Tuddenham, are safely through to this season’s finals night. East Tuddenham’s Chrissie Turner, Melly Woods & John Turner, who snatched the title last season on a dramatic last end, were unbeaten at the Horsford Heroes heat with three wins and a draw to finish on seven points and +23 shots. Thorpe Marriott’s Richard Perkins, Mandy Marshall & Tony Turner held Turner’s triple to a 4-4 draw when they met and with wins in their other three games they qualified as a best runner-up with seven points and +15 shots. Last season’s defeated finalists Geraldine Potter, Gerald Potter & Chris Mann of East Tuddenham won the heat at Halvergate and Windows triple Mally Woodhouse, Avril Walker & David Walker finished second in a depleted field. When the scores were adjusted to allow for the missing game David Walker’s triple also qualified for finals night. The Woodbastwick heat was also one triple short but Coltishall’s Margaret Reynolds, Malcolm Reynolds & Les Harman won all their games to win the heat. Halvergate’s Rob Cranston, Robbie Lamb & David Lamb were second on shots but with only one win were well out of contention of a best runner-up spot. East Tuddenham’s Albert Palgrave, John Jeffery & Robin Amos won at Windows with six points while seeded triple Ray Lamb, Morgan Warnes & Simon Warnes were second with five points. A surprise 6-4 defeat for Warnes’ triple in their last game against Sheila Redwood, Ted Redwood & John Jarvis of Thorpe Marriott cost them a finals night place. The heat at Coltishall was won by Kirby Bedon’s Joan Costello, Teresa Goldsmith & Selwyn Goldsmith with three wins and a draw. Also earning a finals night place were Brenda Sizer, Diane Boswell & Mike Boswell who finshed on six points after beating Halvergate’s Donna Lamb, Roy Walker & Keith Cooke in a game that was effectively a play-off for the runners-up position as both triples went into the game level on points in joint second place.

                                                                                                                                          Posted 20-11-15

Wymondham produce first whitewash against old rivals

Wymondham produced a ruthless display in their defence of the Challenge Cup with a first 20-0 (100-37) win over their old Breckland league rivals Connaught in the first leg meaning just a single draw is required at Connaught to put themselves into the semi finals. Jack Pye was again in good form in the singles with wins of 16-7 and 12-3 against Owen Secker and Lee Fallows while Andy Jackson playing alongside Pye also produced two good wins of 12-5 and 9-5. Debbie Pye, Brian Saunders, Melvyn Barker and Jon Sparham won their match's by impressive margins of 16-2 & 14-3 while Pat Saunders, Billie Barker, Roger Steele and Mark Linsdell also won their match's by 9-4 & 12-8 to record an emphatic victory.

                                                                                                                                           Posted 20-11-15

England win British Isles “A” Team Title

The British Isles Championships, held in Scotland this year, saw the Irish yet again pick up the lion’s share of the titles but the England “A” International Team, with Norfolk’s Keith Cooke, David Lamb & Morgan Warnes featuring in the team, did triumph in their competition. Once again in the Premier competition Ireland won the B.I International Team event as well as the B.I Pairs, the B.I Triples and the B.I Fours titles. Wales stopped a complete clean sweep in the British Isles Premier event as A Jones won the B.I Singles Championship title. In the British Isles “A” section England failed to add any of the individual titles to the Team event title. Ireland won the B.I “A” Singles title, the B.I "A" Triples and the B.I "A" Fours as well. Wales won their second title of the weekend winning the B.I “A” Pairs. In recent weeks some in the sport have questioned the England weekends held during the early weeks of the season. While Ireland continue to win title after title without holding team weekends for their international players the ESMBA continue to spend money on what some call meaningless matches with very little success to show for it where it counts in the British Isles Championships.

                                                                                                          Posted 16-11-15

Norfolk Premier are Pride of the East

The new "Pride of the East" event was launched today at Hingham where the regions four I.C.C County Teams met in a 4 Team Tournament. Norfolk Premier emerged as the first time winners after a solid performance in which they finished clear of the field with 38 points. Suffolk made a slow start but recovered well to finish as runners-up with 24 points. Going into the final session Norfolk “A” & Cambridgeshire were level on 14 points but while Norfolk “A” collected six points in the pairs against Suffolk the Cambs pairs suffered a meltdown against Norfolk Premier and failed to add to their points tally. This left Norfolk “A” in third place with Cambs in fourth. Top scorers for Norfolk Premier in the triples were Kerry Greenacre, Jenny Walker & Debbie Sparham who won their games by 8-6, 12-7 & 14-9. Norfolk Premier dominated the pairs with Rob Cranston & Jack Pye winning 15-7, 13-11 & 11-4, Laura Hawksworth & Chris Mann winning 11-8, 11-8 & 17-3 while Bob Carter pair Nigel Willard & Jason Woods won 10-9, 15-6 & 15-10. Norfolk “A” collected most of their points in the pairs with John Jeffery & Robin Amos winning two games by 13-9 & 13-10, Maureen & George Munford winning 13-10 & 11-8 while Graham Tweed & John Jarvis won by 19-2 & 13-7. Norfolk, Suffolk & Cambs will be in discussion over holding the event annually with each county taking it in turns to host.

                                                                                                            Posted 15-11-15   

Defending Bure champions win at Woodbastwick

Defending Bure League champions Halvergate won 10-0 at Woodbastwick but the victory was far from easy as three games produced one shot wins. David Lamb’s triple beat Lianne Mills 12-11, Keith Cooke’s triple beat Peter Jablonowski 11-10 and Robbie Lamb’s triple beat Derek Sheldrake 11-10. In the other game Simon Warnes beat Elaine Cole 15-11 but Woodbastwick will feel that they deserved more from a match with games as close as this but that’s bowls. Halvergate also took all ten points at Windows where David Lamb’s triple led the way with a 17-8 win against Mike Boswell. Woodbastwick won 8-2 at home to Coltishall with the night’s best performance coming from Michael Fox, Derek Oakes & Elaine Cole who ran out 21-3 winners against Les Harman’s triple. Veteran Vic Woods scored Coltishall’s only win beating Peter Jablonowski 15-12. Kirby Bedon won 10-0 at home to old rivals Hevingham but in this match the home side racked up 76 shots against the visitors total of 26. In the first half Teresa Goldsmith, Jan Hewitt & Selwyn Goldsmith beat Pat Williamson’s triple 25-1 while Phil Watson’s triple added a 13-10 win against David Sharpe. After the break Billie Barker, Jimmy Dye & Gerald Chilvers piled on the pressure beating Alan Bunn’s triple 21-5 while Keith Thomas beat Maurice Kemp 17-10.


Last wood winner for Carter in thriller at Kirby

Bob Carter made it four straight wins in the Tens League but left it till the final bowl of the match to snatch victory at Kirby Bedon. In the first half the home side built a slight lead as Teresa & Selwyn Goldsmith beat Jean Woods & John Turner 17-11 while Sue Hunt, Steve Bridge & Melvin Woods reduced the deficit to five shots with a 14-13 win against Phil Watson’s Kirby triple. After the break Andrew Jackson, Nigel Willard & Rob Howlett struck a blow for Carter by beating Gerald Chilvers’ triple 18-11 but the remaining pairs game decided the match. Kirby’s Shirley & Joe Brown led Jamie Forster & Jason Woods 12-9 going into the last end with Kirby now 53-52 up on overall shots. When Jason Woods stepped up to play the night’s last bowl there appeared no way in for the Carter skip and he elected to fire in the hope of getting a result. To the relief of his team he scattered the head leaving his pair holding two shots, a 54-53 shots advantage and a 2-0 win.

Triple success for First Bus at Connaught “B”

First Bus opened strongly at Connaught “B” with wins in both triples games for Lesley Crowe & Rex Cox in this Norwich Cup tie. With both pairs games finishing level First Bus took a 6-2 points lead into the second half. The tie was decided in the next session as both First Bus triples won their games to move 10-2 up. The final session of pairs games were shared leaving First Bus with an impressive 12-4 away win.


Shock in South Norfolk as Hempnall lose at home

There was a shock result in the South Norfolk League as defending champions Hempnall were beaten by 8-2 at home to Diss. Roger Parker was the only home skip to taste success as he won 12-9 but it was Diss all the way in the other games. Terry Newby’s 19-7 win against Rob Cranston was followed by a 15-9 win for Graham Mobbs against Neil Davidson and a 16-10 win for Karl Newby against Richard Harrowing as Diss caused the biggest upset in the South Norfolk League for years. Diss followed on from this great result by winning 9-1 at Connaught but all the games were close with Karl Newby’s five shot win against Sheila Bragg the biggest winning margin.

Jarrolds top of City League

Jarrolds 12-2 win at home to Windows keeps them top of the City of Norwich League. It was a mixed week for Framingham Earl who powered their way to a 12-2 win at County Council but crashed to a 14-0 defeat at British Rail. Thorpe Marriott began their campaign with a 14-0 home maximum against British Rail.

Bob Carter  off and running

Bob Carter moved to the top of the Tens League with a 3-0 win at Hevingham. A tight first half saw George Clarke, Steve Bridge & Melvin Woods beat Pat Williamson’s triple 16-13 but Rex Cox & David Sharpe hit back for Hevingham beating Jamie Forster & Jason Woods 11-10. Another tight pairs game after the break saw Jason Woods & John Turner win 14-12 against Young & Kemp but the real damage was done as Carter’s Sue Hunt, Nigel Willard & Robert Howlett won 22-9. Halvergate began their campaign with a maximum 4-0 home win against Coltishall. A 17-6 win for Robbie Lamb’s triple and a 14-7 win for David Knights & Keith Cooke gave the home side a big first half lead and there was no way back for the visitors although Margaret Reynolds, Malcolm Reynolds & Les Harman scored a consolation 17-11 win against England player Simon Warnes.  

They are all Heroes as Horsford lead Bure

Despite a narrow 6-4 home defeat for Horsford Heroes against Thorpe Marriott they still remain leaders of the Bure League. Mark “The Marvel” Tuttle grabbed a one shot win against Kath Frost while Chris Woodhouse’s triple won by a comfortable 20-7 margin against George Clarke. Thorpe Marriott earned the match points though as Sylvia Turner beat Vic Webster 13-9 and Tony Turner beat Richard Dix 14-10. Another close match saw Woodbastwick win 6-4 at Horsford BC with a 20-10 win for Woodbastwick’s Lianne Mills the match decider. Coltishall won 6-4 at home to Thorpe Marriott with home skips Margaret Harman & Terry Fletcher both winning.

Halvergate in Bure Cup Semi-Finals

Taking a huge 22-2 lead into their Bure Cup second leg match against Hevingham there was never much of a chance of Hevingham stopping Halvergate’s cup run despite home advantage. This match was more competitive than the first leg but Halvergate won again, this time by 14-10, to claim a semi-final place against either Woodbastwick or Kirby Bedon.

Norwich Cup 2nd round action

Harling Rec, playing in the Norwich Cup for the first time, tasted early success defeating visitors Framingham Earl by 12-4. Wins for triples skipped by Edward Jones & Colin Hayman gave them a perfect start and Maureen & Mike Tarrent added a 12-3 win in the pairs. A 12-2 win for a Framingham pair skipped by  Debbie Bunn reduced the deficit to 6-2 at the break but another three wins for Harling in the second half decided the issue. A great match at Sprowston, where Connaught “A” were the visitors, ended in an 8-8 draw but with 62 shots against Connaught’s 54 the home side are through to the quarter-finals. Terry Fletcher’s triple won both their games for Sprowston beating Sylvia Parsons 13-5 and Steve Hall by 11-3.  Chris Musk & Sheila Bragg were Connaught’s best performers winning their pairs games by 11-5 against Margaret & John Poynter and 10-5 against Linda Chadwick & Peter Smart. Halvergate proved too hot to handle for Horsford BC as the visitors won by 12-4. Simon Warnes won both his triples games while Robbie & David Lamb and David Knights & Keith Cooke took all the points in the pairs games. Horsford Heroes looked on their way to victory at home to Kirby Bedon leading 8-4 going into the final session but then it all went wrong as Kirby Bedon’s Carol & John Aggas won 10-5 and Jimmy Dye & Gerald Chilvers won 8-5 to level the tie at 8-8 and with 59 shots against the home sides 49 it was Kirby Bedon who went through. It could have been so different though after a miscalculation by the Kirby captain led to them offering to concede the match before the last session but it was turned down by the home side who wanted to play on.

Wymondham avenge last season’s defeat

Wymondham hung on to win 6-4 at Carleton Rode to avenge last season’s Breckland League defeat at this venue. A good first half for the visitors saw Chris Mann beat Karl Newby 16-12 and Jon Sparham beat Terry Newby 22-9. The home side hit back after the break with Neil Davidson beating Jack Pye 21-20 while Graham Mobbs won by 22-9 against Debbie Sparham but the Rode were still three shots adrift of Wymondham over-all. Other games saw Carleton Rode beat Connaught “B” 8-2 and Carleton Rode also winning 10-0 at Watton.

                                                                                                Posted 10-11-15

Norfolk Premier complete a double against West Mids

Norfolk Premier completed a double against a strong West Mids side as they repeated their 21-19 away win with an identical score-line on their own mats at Hingham Sports & Social Club. Norfolk made a great start with three wins from four games in the opening singles & pairs games. Wymondham’s Chris Mann hit form against Craig Strong and led 14-5 after ten ends, the West Mids star reduced the deficit to 16-10 but Mann always looked comfortable. Norfolk’s Singles Champion Neil Davidson of Hempnall found himself 6-1 down after five ends but then won eight of the last ten ends to record an excellent 17-12 win. Halvergate’s David Lamb & Wymondham’s Jack Pye added a 15-11 win in the pairs to give Norfolk an early advantage. The next session was drawn with Morgan Warnes, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods coming from behind to win 13-12 while Lewis Cranston, Rob Cranston, Phil Watson & Terry Newby won 16-11 in the rinks. Norfolk increased their lead when the singles & pairs returned to the mats. Chris Mann led throughout to win his singles game 14-9 while Simon Warnes & Jon Sparham had a much better second game winning 18-6 against Jack Shepherd & Chris Willies. David Lamb & Jack Pye finished the day unbeaten after drawing their match 11-11. West Mids needed to win all four games in the last session if they were to snatch victory and despite finishing strongly they just fell short with three wins. It was left to Kerry Greenacre, Debbie Sparham & Keith Cooke to see Norfolk Premier over the finishing line with a 15-11 win.   

Norfolk “A” beat Suffolk in local derby

Norfolk “A” were determined to avenge last season’s home defeat against local rivals Suffolk and will be delighted with a 23-17 home win. The first session was shared as Robin Amos of Deaf Sports romped to a 22-6 win and Laura Hawksworth of Deaf Sports & Lesley Crowe of First Bus won 18-9 in the pairs. Norfolk edged in front on the next session as the fours delivered three points. Maureen Munford, Elaine Oatway, Gerald Chilvers & Colin Coman won 18-6 while Jenny Walker, Andrew Jackson, Roger Steele & Peter Walker drew 9-9. Joan Costello, Graham Tweed & John Jarvis added a 10-8 win in the triples after taking two shots on the last end. The third session saw Norfolk increase their lead. Both singles won, Robin Amos by 15-10 and Mike Boswell of Windows by 18-7. Jean Woods & George Clarke hit form to produce a 17-6 win in the pairs to put Norfolk in the driving seat. The final session saw Suffolk claw back points but a 14-8 win for Joan Costello, Graham Tweed & John Jarvis secured the win.

                                                                                                              Posted 8-11-15  

ESMBA Clarify rule

The ESMBA Management Committee has clarified its new I.C.C Rules after confusion regarding the roll-up before matches. The following has been issued;


1. The half hour roll up before matches has been scrapped and instead each team will have two up and two down before each session. There will be no practice on the day of the game by either team.


2. Counties proposing to play a newly registered member, or one who has been registered with them for less than two years, must confirm residency. The ESMBA define proof of residency as being on the electoral roll or confirming council tax payment. 

Hingham singles shine against Deaf Sports

Wendy Tweed and Will Townsend collected seven out of the eight points on offer in the singles as their performances gave Hingham a 13-7 lead going into the second leg at Deaf Sports in the Challenge Cup. Wendy Tweed drew her first match 9-9 against John Jefferey while Will Townsend beat the experienced Robin Amos by a big 13-3 scoreline. It looked to get even better for Hingham as C. Powell, T. Curry-Smith, G. Tweed and K. Thomas collected a 10-7 win against R. Hall, J. Robertson, C. Mohamed and R. Sutton but a big 15-1 win for G. Amos, D. Kemble, R. Thomas and L. Hawksworth meant Deaf Sports snatched the shots by 33-34 which drew the first session 5-5. The singles came out for the second session as Hingham again dominated with Wendy Tweed beating Robin Amos 7-6 and Will Townsend beating John Jefferey 10-8. C. Short, K. Buller, J. Hunter and M. Hunter tasted defeat again this time against R. Sutton's block with a 6-9 scoreline. K. Thomas' four however made sure Hingham went into the second league defending a lead as they beat L. Hawksworth's four by a heavy 15-3 result. John Jeffery and Robin Amos' performances will have been disappointing but know they can produce better displays especially at their home venue that could be the key to see them progress!

                                                                                 Amended 03/11/2015

Singles Specialist Davidson reigns supreme again

Neil Davidson of Hempnall collected his fourth Norfolk County Singles Championship title in just six years at Hingham Sports & Social Club to continue his domination of this format in Norfolk short mat bowls. He met fellow Norfolk Premier player Simon Warnes of Horsford BC & England who had reached the final for the first time. Davidson opened with a nice forehand draw just short of the jack while Warnes first wood was long. Neil Davidson switched to the backhand to draw a toucher with his second wood while Simon Warnes was slightly long again. Davidson was short with his third bowl and Warnes replied with a nice toucher on the backhand to take shot. An excellent backhand shot by Davidson with his final wood fell away from the jack leaving Warnes holding one shot which how the opening end finished. Warnes opened the second end with a forehand toucher while Davidson lost his bowl in the ditch. Warnes drew in a second and Davidson elected to fire but missed to lose another wood in the ditch. After Warnes drew in a third bowl Neil Davidson fired again and this time took the jack off the mat to force a replay of the end. Both bowlers were long with their opening woods before Davidson drew shot and despite a good attempt to remove it by Warnes the Hempnall star held on to level the game at 1-1. On the third end Davidson held two shots after Warnes played his first into the ditch and his second into the block. By the time Simon Warnes stepped on the mat to play his final bowl of the end Neil Davidson was holding four shots but Warnes responded magnificently to draw shot and take a 2-1 lead. Both bowlers found line and length on the fourth end and produced a great exchange of bowls but in attempting to drive the jack back Warnes left Davidson holding three shots and he gleefully took full advantage by drawing in a fourth for a full house and a 5-2 lead. With his first bowl on the fifth end Davidson drew in behind the jack and with his second he drew just beside the jack while Warnes played a couple of loose woods. Davidson continued to pressure the Horsford BC bowler and held another full house with Warnes still to play his final bowl of the end which was a real pressure shot. Warnes decided to draw in on his forehand but only managed to take one of Davidson’s woods out of the count and the score moved to 8-2 in Davidson’s favour. Warnes fought back on the sixth end drawing in two good bowls but Davidson, now looking supremely confident, used weight to hold two shots. Warnes replied with weight and was somewhat fortunate to get a wick and finish up in the ditch with the jack about eighteen inches away. Davidson used a bit of pace with his next bowl leaving himself with a wood just a little way from the ditch line. Warnes then drove a wood down the forehand side missing everything and a measure was needed to determine shot which went in Warnes favour to reduce the deficit to 8-3 after six ends. Warnes began the seventh end with a perfect forehand toucher before Davidson immediately opened up the jack with his first wood. Simon Warnes then produced two touchers in a row to ditch the jack and hold two shots which was still the position when the end was finished leaving Davidson now only three shots ahead with three ends remaining. A highly competitive end followed which saw both bowlers displaying great form. The jack finished up near the edge of the mat about a foot from the ditch lane and there was then a delay while a line decision was made regarding a Warnes bowl close to the ditch line. After it was finally declared live Neil Davidson conjured up a glorious attacking bowl to take out two of Warnes’ bowls and move 10-5 ahead. After Warnes drew two shots on the penultimate end Davidson removed one of them with a firing shot. With his last bowl of the end Warnes attempted to draw in a badly needed second wood but after a measure was called for to decide shots Warnes had to settle for just a single. Needing a full house to force an extra end Warnes drew in well with his first two woods on the final scheduled end but played his third bowl too heavy and lost it in the ditch. Needing to kill the end he fired with his last wood but hit the block leaving Neil Davidson to celebrate winning his fourth Norfolk County Singles Championship title. In the play-off for third place Jamie Forster of Bob Carter beat Wymondham’s Jon Sparham 11-10. Davidson had reached the final with a 10-7 win against Forster in the semi-finals while Warnes beat Jon Sparham 9-4 in the other semi-final. The County Singles had its normal share of upsets with Chris Mann of Wymondham losing to Jamie Forster on an extra end in the Last 16 stage while Wymondham’s Billie Barker defeated four time champion John Turner of East Tuddenham 9-5 in the previous round. Former England bowler Melvin Woods was tipped by some but he was also eliminated in that round losing 10-9 to David Blundell of Wortwell. Halvergate & England bowler David Lamb’s search for his first County Singles title continues after he failed to make it through the group stages the previous day. Three bowlers who will have been delighted to have made it as far as the quarter-finals were Rob Cranston of County Council, David Blundell of Wortwell and Graham Tweed of Hingham while a former Norfolk Singles champion Selwyn Goldsmith of Kirby Bedon won all his games to reach the quarter final stage before losing to Jon Sparham.  

                                                                                                     Posted 1-11-15

                            Neil Davidson - Norfolk County Singles Champion for the fourth time in six years


                               Simon Warnes - Runner up in Norfolk County Singles 2015

Jack Pye reaches European Masters Quarter-Finals

Wymondham’s Jack Pye gave a good account of himself reaching the European Masters Quarter-Finals in Belgium before losing 14-4 to Northern Ireland’s Gary Moore. In the group stages Jack beat Jan Reinders of Sweden 20-5, Bengt Johansson of Sweden 17-4 and Dick Almen also of Sweden by 14-11. Jack drew with fellow Englishman Robin Armstrong 10-10 but lost 14-11 to Somerset ace Lee Toleman. In the knock-outs he beat Suzanne Finlay of Northern Ireland 12-7 and then won 14-4 against Antonio Rinaldi of Italy before finally exiting the competition at the hands of Gary Moore who went on to reach the final where he was beaten 14-5 by Sweden’s Joel Hager who won his first ever SMPT Singles title.

                                                                                                    Posted 1-11-15

Big win for Norfolk Over 60s in Cambs

Norfolk Over 60s opened their Eastern England Over 60's League campaign with an excellent 35-15 away win against Cambridgeshire Over 60s. Norfolk has a poor away record against Cambs so the result came as a bit of surprise but was well deserved. Two Norfolk triples won all their three games, Jenny Walker, Sue Fox & Mike Boswell won by 11-7, 10-3 & 13-5 while Margaret Reynolds, Malcolm Reynolds & Colin Coman won 11-9, 7-6 & 9-5. Billie Barker, John Jarvis & Selwyn Goldsmith were also unbeaten with wins of 9-4, 8-6 and a 5-5 draw. Wendy Tweed, Graham Tweed & Keith Thomas won two games by 8-4 & 9-4 as did David Blundell, Ted Redwood & Tony Oram with wins of 9-8 & 6-5. The match was played at March IBC to the new Eastern England League format which gives each of the eight triples representing their county three games each of nine ends.

                                                                                                     Posted 30-10-15

                                            Gerry Russell of Cambs & Teresa Goldsmith of Norfolk at the line-up

                                                          Cambs Over 60s ready for the day's play

                                     Some of Norfolk's players contemplating the day ahead

                                               Colin Coman on his way to a 11-9 win against Tony Hart

                       Enjoying the action - Cambs bowlers Mary Fox, Geoff Ward, Sheila Ward & Barry Fox

                                                               Rex Allibone - Rest in Peace

On visiting Cambs this week Norfolk learned that Rex Allibone had passed away in September. In the days when Cambs played in the Premier section of the I.C.C Rex normally played singles for Cambs  and was an excellent bowler and a gentleman on the mat. He will be fondly remembered by the Norfolk bowlers who played against him. Rest in Peace Rex.

Kirby Bedon safely through

In the Bure Cup Kirby Bedon were firm favourites to progress through into the second round to play Woodbastwick as they took a 14-10 lead into the second leg of their tie against Windows at their Kirby Bedon Church Hall venue. And so it proved to be as the home side made a brisk start to proceedings with Teresa Goldsmith, Jan Hewitt & Selwyn Goldsmith beating David Walker’s triple 13-1 and Jill Watson, Melvyn Barker & Phil Watson beating Mally Woodhouse 6-1 to make it 18-10 on points. Windows had a better second session with Maurice Curchin, Di Boswell & Mike Boswell beating Gerald Chilvers 4-2 while Keith Halford’s triple held Keith Thomas to a 6-6 draw. Windows lost ground again though on the third session with Goldsmith & Watson again skipping their triples to victory and the tie was decided in session four as a 6-5 win for Wendy Tweed, Graham Tweed & Keith Thomas settled the issue in Kirby’s favour. Goldsmith & Watson’s triples made it three wins apiece with the final score 17-7 to Kirby Bedon on the night, 31-17 on aggregate.

                                                                                                                                        Posted  28-10-15

                              Baker wins 30-2 as Hempnall open with a win

South Norfolk League champions Hempnall begin the new season as firm favourites yet again and their campaign started well with a 10-0 home win against Wreningham. Paul Baker’s triple led the way with a 30-2 win against Karl Bunn but at least the visitors know that they have got their hardest fixture of the season out of the way. Graham Tweed’s Hingham triple were in good form winning 21-7 against Peter Cook’s Saxlingham Nethergate triple to secure an 8-2 away win.

                                                                                                       Posted 27-10-15

 League, Cup & Championship news


Reigning Bure Pairs champions Simon Warnes & David Lamb of Halvergate and England were the major casualties of this week’s Bure Pairs Championship heats. After collecting two wins and a draw in the Woodbastwick heat they were level on points with Hevingham’s David Sharpe & Rex Cox with one session remaining. The last game though proved to be fatal for the England internationals as fellow Halvergate pairing Ray & Robbie Lamb beat them 10-2 to win the heat and consign their opponents to a third place finish. David Sharpe & Rex Cox finished in second place with five points and a +6 shot difference which did not prove enough to earn them a best runners-up place. Last season’s runner-ups Sylvia & Tony Turner of Thorpe Marriott are safely through after a tight heat at Hevingham. They finished level with Kirby Bedon’s Shirley & Joe Brown on just five points apiece but a superior shot difference earned them a Final’s Night place. The Brown’s total was insufficient to earn them a qualifying place. East Tuddenham’s new look pairing of Laura Hawksworth & Chris Mann scored seven points at Thorpe Marriott with Hawksworth showing the form that has earned her a Norfolk County call-up. There was no stopping them as they reeled off three wins of 12-0, 11-2 & 11-5 but had to come from behind to draw 6-6 with Sue & Peter Fox of Heroes in their final match. Jan Hewitt & Selwyn Goldsmith of Kirby Bedon, semi-finalists for the last two years, secured a Final’s Night place with six points. Halvergate’s Morgan Warnes & Keith Cooke picked up seven points to win the heat at Horsford BC where Thorpe Marriott’s Kath Frost & Richard Perkins also made it through with six points. At the Kirby Bedon heat Woodbastwick’s Norma & Peter Jablonowski scored six points with +22 shots to win while Mally Kemp & Mark Tuttle of Heroes also finished on six points with just +3 shots but it was enough to earn them a place in the last eight.



Protecting a 17-7 lead from their Bure Cup first leg win at Thorpe Marriott the second leg proved to be stress free for Coltishall. A 13-4 win for John Aggas and a 4-3 win for Les Harman increased their lead to fourteen points after the first session and after collecting ten points from the first eight games they were uncatchable and Thorpe Marriott conceded. Windows entertained Kirby Bedon for their first leg Bure Cup clash which finished with the visitors taking a 14-10 lead into the second leg. Teresa Goldsmith, Joan Costello & Selwyn Goldsmith took maximum points with wins of 6-3, 7-3 & 11-1 for Kirby Bedon while Maurice Curchin, Diane Boswell & Mike Boswell did likewise for Windows winning their games 5-4, 5-3 & 9-4. 



In the Bure League Woodbastwick suffered two 8-2 away defeats. At Heroes there was only six shots between the teams at the end after Woodbastwick’s Peter Jablonowski beat Mick Dale 19-10 but a 16-8 win for Chris Woodhouse was decisive. In their next game at Halvergate Elaine Cole’s triple scored a 16-14 win against Simon Warnes in the opening session but that was as good as it got as Steven Lamb, Robbie Lamb & David Lamb all won for the home side. 



The City of Norwich League has reduced to thirteen teams this season after both Old Bonds & Felthorpe left the league. There were fears that Sprowston SSC would also withdraw but following a special meeting, chaired by NCSMBA Chairman Selwyn Goldsmith and attended by Association President Brian Saunders and Records Officer Teresa Goldsmith, a new club committee has been elected and the club’s future now looks assured. Defending champions Horsford BC have started the season well with a 10-4 home win against Horsford Heroes and a 13-1 away win against Costessey who finished third last season. Jarrolds, the first ever City of Norwich League champions, displayed good home form beating County Council 10-4 and Sprowston SSC by the same scoreline but away from home their early season form has been patchy. Jarrolds went down 12-2 at First Bus and by 11-3 at Deaf Sports but a two shot win at British Rail translated into an 11-3 away win. First Bus are the early season table toppers with three wins and one defeat. They stormed to 14-0 maximum wins at home to Sprowston SSC and Deaf Sports to add to the win over Jarrolds but they went down 10-4 away to County Council. Windows went down 12-2 at both Costessey and Framingham Earl but pulled off a 12-2 win at Horsford Heroes. Other results saw Framingham Earl beaten 12-2 at Sprowston SSC while Taverham & County Council drew 7-7 on points and 37-37 on shots. 



The eight triples who have qualified in the City League triples include two from Thorpe Marriott who are Jenny Walker, Peter Walker & John Jarvis and Janet Pinchen, Trevor Pinchen & George Clarke. Other qualifiers are Andy Drummie, Carol Kemp & Mark Tuttle of Horsford Heroes, Shirley Brown, Beryl Ottaway & Joe Brown of Costessey, Avril Walker, David Walker & Mike Boswell of Windows, Morgan Warnes, David Knights & Simon Warnes of Horsford BC, Betty Cox, Joan Costello & Colin Coman of First Bus and Maureen Munford, George Munford & David Dewing of Sprowston SSC.



Tens League action saw Bob Carter win 3-0 at Connaught with the night’s best performance a 17-8 win for Sue Hunt, Steve Bridge & Melvin Woods. Both Carter pairs won, Jean Woods & John Turner by 20-18 and Jamie Forster & Jason Woods by 12-7, while Connaught’s Diane Quadling, David Quadling & Elaine Oatway won 14-10 to deny Carter maximum points.



Wymondham could be on course for a record breaking season in a Breckland League where they now look untouchable. Their 10-0 away win at Banham was their fourth maximum points 10-0 win in a row, a brilliant start to the campaign. Jon Sparham’s triple won 24-6, Debbie Sparham won 15-12 Chris Mann won 26-13 and Jack Pye won 19-14. Shropham enter the league for the first time and began their season with a home game against Watton which the visitors won 8-2.



Woodbastwick Eagles flew high winning 14-4 at Martham but were brought down to earth with a 12-6 defeat at Hemsby Beachcombers. The Beachcombers had less luck at home to South Walsham where they slipped to a 12-6 defeat. A local derby saw Bradwell Dynamos beat Bradwell Beacons 13-5.



Norwich Cup holders Wymondham are through to the quarter-finals after winning 13-3 at home to Hempnall. Despite fielding a strong team the visitors found themselves swept aside as the home side won five of the opening six games while the other was drawn. Billie Barker, Andrew Jackson & Jack Pye returned impressive figures for Wymondham winning their games 7-3 & 14-2 while Roger Steele & Chris Mann won 14-5 & 7-6 in the pairs. Kerry Greenacre & Neil Davidson picked up Hempnall’s only win of the night beating Mikey George & Jon Sparham 10-4 in the last session but by then it was all over for the visitors.

                                                                                                    Posted 24-10-15

Two places have become available in the county singles championships on Saturday 31st October at Hingham please contact Chris Mann via Email - or contact 07902609165. Please note if you qualify you will be required to attend on Sunday 1st November as well. 

Norfolk County Singles championship draw now available to view, please click on link below - 

Davidson delivers blow to last season's runners up

Neil Davidson again produced two strong singles performances this time in the first leg of Challenge Cup at last season's runners up Halvergate to put Hempnall favourites going into the second leg at home. The "specialist" produced a terrific first session win against England's David Lamb with a crushing 12-2 victory while Roger Parker made it a dream start for the visitors as he also picked up an 11-8 win against Steven Lamb. The first fours session saw Hempnall build on their 4-0 lead as Lewis Cranston, Owen Cranston, Rob Cranston and Paul Baker beat Micheal Savage, Keith Baker, Ray Lamb and Robbie Lamb 7-4. They completed an unbeaten first session as Colin Stevenson, Mike Pearce, Joan Cann and Richard Harrowing produced a 7-7 draw against Jackie Smith, Mike Tate, Roy Walker and Keith Cook to take the two bonus points for shots to see them lead 9-1 at the break. The second session singles saw Neil Davidson in fine form as he again produced another comfortable win of 12-3 against Steven Lamb but Halvergate got their first win of the night as David Lamb beat Roger Parker 11-4. Things looked to be getting even worse for Halvergate as Paul Baker's four picked up their second win of the night against Keith Cooke's rink winning 8-5 but Robbie Lamb's four produced a 9-4 win against Richard Harrowing's block as Halvergate salvaged a 28-28 draw on shots for the second session and therefore leveling it at 5-5. The 14-6 result however leaves Halvergate with a lot of work to do if they are to progress!

                                                        Posted 20-10-15

Too close for comfort at Hingham

A double header at Hingham saw Norfolk Premier entertaining Northants while Norfolk “A” welcomed Cambridgeshire. After their 21-19 win at West Mids in their opening game Norfolk hoped to carry their good form into the match against old rivals Northants but after their narrow home defeat to them last season Norfolk knew it would likely be quite a battle. So it proved to be as a hard fought match finished in a 20-20 draw. Neil Davidson was once again in superb form as he stamped his authority on his games in the singles against Leigh Hall & Edward Sawbridge. Davidson opened with a 15-10 win against Sawbridge although the Northants player brought respectability to the scoreline after trailing 15-3 with four ends remaining. In his second game against Hall the Norfolk singles specialist roared into an 8-1 lead after five ends eventually winning 17-9. In the first session Leigh Hall looked in terrific form early on against Chris Mann but the Wymondham player fought back well. It was 11-11 going in to the final end and it was Mann who delivered the goods to win 12-11. The Bob Carter triple of Nigel Willard, Jason Woods & Melly Woods were again in impressive form winning their games by 21-7 & 16-9. Both Norfolk pairs won a game apiece but the rinks were disappointing for Norfolk as Northants collected maximum points. Norfolk “A” also found themselves with a tense battle on their hands against Cambs but the Norfolk rinks were in great form collecting maximum points helping Norfolk to a 22-18 home win. Jenny Walker, Roger Steele, Melvyn Barker & Peter Walker won by 9-6 & 14-8 while Elaine Oatway, Colin Coman, debut making Graham Mobbs & Karl Newby won by 14-9 & 17-6. Another player making her debut was young Deaf Sports star Laura Hawksworth who played lead for Lesley Crowe who was making a comeback for the county team after several years out. The ladies had a great day winning both their games by a 13-12 margin. In the triples Joan Costello, Graham Tweed & John Jarvis have established themselves as a successful triple and once again returned two wins of 19-6 & 16-10.    

Carter crash out at Halvergate

Halvergate were in great form as they cruised into the next round of the Norwich Cup beating Bob Carter 13-3. The match began with Mike Tate, Steven Lamb & Simon Warnes storming to a 13-2 win against a strong Carter triple comprising of Sue Hunt, Nigel Willard & Robert Howlett while Michael Savage, Ray Lamb & Robin Amos beat Melly Woods’ triple 8-5. Halvergate then completed a perfect first half as Robbie & David Lamb beat Jean Woods & John Turner 7-6 and Roy Walker & Keith Cooke beat Jamie Forster & Jason Woods 8-3. This left Halvergate needing just one point for outright victory and Simon Warnes’ triple secured the win beating Frank Edy, Steve Bridge & Melly Woods by 7-4 immediately after the break. Robert Howlett’s triple scored what proved to be Carters only win of the night beating Robin Amos 9-4. In the last session, which was now meaningless in terms of the result, Roy Walker & Keith Cooke beat Jean Woods & John Turner 12-5 while Robbie & David Lamb drew with Jamie Forster & Jason Woods. There was some confusion at Horsford BC in their home tie against Bradwell with neither side in possession of a result sheet. This resulted in Bradwell’s triples changing mats in the second half when they should have remained on the mats they played in the first half. Horsford made a good start winning both triples games with Dot Loftus, Tim Flack & David Downing beating Mike Harvey’s triple 5-3 and Barbara Russell, Cathy Fiddy & Paul Isgate beating Jackie Collins’ triple 7-4. Bradwell narrowed the deficit to just two points at the interval as Anne Baker & John Sargent beat Malcolm Makins & Pauline Strivens 7-5 while the other pairs game was drawn. Horsford BC clinched victory immediately after the break as they won both triples games with D Downing’s triple beating Jackie Collins’ triple 11-7 and Paul Isgate’s triple beat Mike Harvey 8-3 with the final score finishing 10-6 in Horsford’s favour. In the Tens League Hempnall collected a maximum 4-0 win at Coltishall after a fantastic first half. Colin Stevenson, Richard Harrowing & Jon Sparham gave them a great shots advantage beating Terry Fletcher’s triple 22-4 while Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye beat Carol & John Aggas 18-8. More damage followed as Bernie Cudden, Joan Cann & Paul Baker beat George Munford’s triple 16-5. Les & Margaret Harman collected a consolation win of 16-13 against Neil Davidson & Chris Mann but it was too little, too late. Connaught opened their Tens campaign with a home win beating Hevingham 3-0. With two ends to go Tyrone Musk & Steve Hall looked to be on their way to a win for Connaught leading Rex Cox & David Sharpe 12-8 but the visiting pair took four shots to snatch a 12-12 draw. The home side were put in a comfortable position though as Diana Adcock, Bill Adcock & Joe LiRocchi beat Betty Cox’s triple 20-6. A massive 22-3 win for Chris Musk & captain Bob Oatway in the second half should have been enough to take maximum points but a terrific performance by Hevingham’s Gill Bunn, Pat Williamson & Alan Bunn, who beat Di Quadling, Dave Quadling & Elaine Oatway 22-4, left Connaught having to settle for three points instead. There were three tight games in the Bure League this week. Kirby Bedon won 6-4 at home to Coltishall with Billie Barker, Shirley Brown & Joe Brown winning 23-4 and Peter Johnson, Graham Tweed & Keith Thomas winning 15-10 for Kirby Bedon while Carol Aggas, Jean Barnett & John Aggas won 10-9 and Margaret Reynolds, Malcolm Reynolds & Les Harman won 15-6 for Coltishall. East Tuddenham won 6-4 at Windows with Linda Chadwick, Les Chadwick & John Jeffery winning 19-13 and Gillian Amos, Laura Hawksworth & Robin Amos winning 11-8 for the visitors. Home wins were earned by Val Harris, Di Boswell & Avril Walker who won 13-11 and Maurice Curchin, Mick Harris & Mike Boswell who won by 11-10. Windows got the better of Hevingham though winning 6-4 with Mick Harris, Mally Woodhouse & David Walker winning 19-7 and Ken Dease, Maureen Dease & Avril Walker winning 16-11. Hevingham hit back with Betty Richardson, John Vincent & Maurice Kemp winning 14-10 and David Young, Eddie Hayward & David Sharpe winning 14-8.

                                                                                                                       Posted 18-10-15

ESMBA expects all Counties to act in the spirit of the game

Prior to this weekend’s Inter-County Championship programme the ESMBA has issued the following statement on their website. “It appears the amendment to the roll-up for I.C.C games requires further clarification to ensure all counties are doing the same. Until it is formally discussed and the revised wording agreed at our next committee meeting, on 25 October, the E.S.M.B.A expects all Home Counties to act in the spirit of the game and to limit their roll-up to the 2 ends before each session.” The statement follows Norfolk’s request for urgent clarification following the opening Group 2 match played at Solihull I.B.C between West Mids Premier and Norfolk Premier.   

                                                                                                                           Posted 16-10-15     

Norfolk Premier at West Mids

Carleton Rode win Keith Banks Memorial Triples

Gill Coleman, Karl Newby & Graham Mobbs of Carleton Rode won the Keith Banks Memorial Triples at Hingham. After two of the scheduled three group sessions had been played the four leading triples were Will Townsend, Trevor Curry-Smith & Mike White of Hingham, Chris Musk, Stephen Hall & Sheila Bragg of Connaught “A”, Elaine Oatway, Ty Musk & Lee Fallows of Connaught “A” and Gill Coleman, Karl Newby & Graham Mobbs of Carleton Rode. They all won their last games to remain top of their groups to qualify for the semi-finals. In the semi-finals, which were drawn by Hazel Banks, Graham Mobbs triple beat M White’s triple and Lee Fallows’ triple beat Sheila Bragg’s triple. In the final Carleton Rode took the lead winning the first three ends to lead 4-0 but Lee Fallows’ triple hit back on the fourth end scoring four shots to level the game. The fifth end was a no-scoring end but Connaught took two shots on the sixth end to take the lead. Carleton Rode then took three ends in a row to lead 8-6 before Connaught took a single to reduce the deficit to one shot with two ends to go. The penultimate end proved to be vital as Graham Mobbs’ Carleton Rode triple scored five shots to take a commanding lead into the final end. Another two shots on that end saw Carleton Rode crowned worthy champions. The trophy was presented by Hazel Banks, Jenny & Roy Potton were thanked for the catering and Hingham was thanked for hosting the event.

                                                                                                                             Posted 12-10-15

Incredibly-Crazy Conundrum ( I.C.C. )

Well, the Inter-County Championships are up and running for another season and if anyone thought that the odd three team groups would equate to producing a pretty bland competition they obviously failed to take into consideration the new I.C.C rules issued by the ESMBA prior to the season’s start. Cheshire was first off the mark with a long e-mail to all County Associations with a veritable shopping list of queries & complaints about the I.C.C rules. Then of course the West Mids home match against Norfolk Premier set off a list of postings on Facebook with the ESMBA, probably unwisely, getting involved on social media by making their own postings following the disagreement over the new roll-up rule. Even Simon Pridham got involved by backing Norfolk’s view of the incident. When is a rule not a rule? Answers on a postcard please but don’t send them to us……….


A Warm Wayland welcome assured!

Wayland Short Mat Bowls Club will be holding two Open Mornings for non members to try out their friendly club. A warm welcome awaits beginners or experienced players on Wednesday 28th October and 25th November between 9.30am and 12.30pm. Refreshments will also be served. Wayland’s venue is The Youth Centre, Harvey Street, Watton, Norfolk, IP25 6EB and there is plenty of free parking. Just turn up on the day or phone 01953-889504 or 01953-881092 for further details.

                                                                                                                              Posted 10-10-15

The Youth Centre, Watton

Bure Champs kick off season with 7-3 win

Reigning Bure League champions Halvergate began their campaign with a 7-3 home win against Windows but had to fight their way back from behind. Russell Daynes, Mally Woodhouse & Avril Walker beat Steven Lamb’s triple 15-14 while David Walker’s triple held England international David Lamb and his triple to a 12-12 draw to give Windows a 3-1 points lead at halftime. Halvergate hit back after the break with Keith Cooke’s triple winning 22-6 and Robbie Lamb’s triple winning 23-8 to win the match. Windows have got off to abrisk start also playing Horsford Heroes at home and away. Windows were beaten 7-3 at Horsford where Chris Woodhouse won 21-4 and Roger Frank won 13-6. Mike Boswell scored Windows only win beating Jane James 24-6. Horsford Heroes completed the double over Windows with a 6-4 away win in which Vic Webster won 15-9 and Mick Dale won 16-9. Mike Boswell & Keith Halford won their games for Windows. Bure Cup action saw Coltishall pull off a 17-7 first leg win at Thorpe Marriott which should set them up to finish the job on their own mats in the second leg. Carol Aggas, Jean Barnett & John Aggas were in good form for the visitors winning their games by 8-5, 6-3 & 8-2. Halvergate built up an enormous 22-2 lead in the first leg of their cup-tie at home to Hevingham. David Lamb’s triple won 9-4, 16-4 & 10-4, Robbie Lamb’s triple won 7-4, 6-5 & 6-3 and Simon Warnes’ triple won by 9-2, 6-1 & 12-5. Keith Cooke’s triple won 9-1 & 9-5 but lost their final game 5-4 against former county bowler David Sharpe. Breckland League champions Wymondham have made a brilliant start with maximum points wins in their first two games. At Forncett Chris Mann won 22-16, Jon Sparham won 22-13, Jack Pye won 22-9 and Melvyn Barker won 24-12. In their next match at home to Hingham Chris mann won 17-12, Jon Sparham won 25-12, Jack Pye won 20-11 and Melvyn Barker won 23-12. Other games saw Carleton Rode win 10-0 at Watton and by 8-2 at home to Connaught”.  


                                                                                                                                         Posted 7-10-15

Davidson stars as Norfolk win at West Mids

Neil Davidson of Hempnall was man of the match as Norfolk Premier opened their Inter-County Championship campaign with an away win against West Mids Premier in Solihull. Bob Carter’s Nigel Willard, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods produced a typically gritty and stubborn display winning their games by 17-9 & 13-10 with their second win securing Norfolk victory on a dramatic last end in the final session. A tight first session saw West Mids take an early 6-2 points lead with only Davidson securing a win for the visitors beating Mitchell Harvey 20-6. Chris Mann fought back to lead Craig Strong 11-10 after twelve ends of the other singles game before going down by just one shot. Norfolk cut the deficit to 9-7 in the second session in which Melvin Woods’ triple won 17-9, Lewis Cranston, Robbie Lamb, Phil Watson & Simon Warnes won 8-5 in the fours and Owen Cranston, Rob Cranston, Sheila Bragg & Bob Oatway drew 10-10. Norfolk moved into the lead in the penultimate session as Neil Davidson won by 12-4 against Craig Strong and Wymondham’s Chris Mann won the last two ends against Mitchell Harvey to win 13-12. David Lamb of Halvergate & Wymondham’s Jack Pye led Phil Warr & Malcolm Follis by just one shot with three ends to go but then took six shots without reply to win 15-8. Norfolk’s triples saw their team over the finishing line in the final session. Ollie Allen, Morgan Warnes & Keith Cooke scored five shots on the last end of their game to win 15-9 and raise Norfolk hopes of winning. Nigel Willard, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods were still in action in their final game with their result set to decide the match. They led 12-10 going in to the last end and held shot with only the West Mids skip left to play his final wood. There was an understandable long delay while the home triple discussed what shot to play. With three home woods on the left side of the mat good contact on the side of the jack would have given them victory. To Norfolk’s relief the home skip was slightly on the wide side with his last bowl leaving the Norfolk triple with a 13-10 win and Norfolk Premier winners by 21-19 on points. The match was the first under the new I.C.C rules limiting teams to a two-up and two-down roll-up prior to each game, which has replaced the old half an hour roll per side, and before the match West Mids County Contact Chris Willies and Norfolk Manager Selwyn Goldsmith were involved in discussion over their different interpretation of the new rule. It is understood that Norfolk will seek urgent clarification of the rule at the earliest opportunity by the ESMBA.

                                                                                                                                        Posted 5-10-15

                                                 Norfolk Singles heroes Neil Davidson & Chris Mann


Potters Cup glory for Keith Cooke

Keith Cooke of Halvergate skipped his triple to Potters Cup glory with an immaculate display in Potters International Arena where Eddie Costello of First Bus, Roger Steele of Wymondham & England international Cooke defeated defending champions Debbie Pye, Jack Pye & Chris Mann in the final. Good opening bowls by Eddie Costello & Roger Steele put Mann’s triple in trouble on the first end forcing Jack Pye to attack but he missed his intended target. Chris Mann succeeded in ditching the jack with his first bowl but it failed to stay with the jack leaving Cooke to pick up a single with a toucher already in the ditch. Costello again won the battle of the leads on the second end but an attacking shot by Mann opened up the head although Cooke’s triple still held. With his final bowl Chris Mann grazed the jack but his wood ran away leaving Cooke to pick up three shots after a measure and a 4-0 lead. A good bowl by Debbie Pye put Mann’s triple in control of the third end and Jack Pye consolidated with a fine forehand. Cooke attacked with his first bowl but to no avail and Chris Mann drew in another wood. Keith Cooke then played a superb weighted wood to take shot and when Mann went wide with his last wood Cooke’s triple had a 5-0 lead. With Costello, Steele & Cooke all playing well Chris Mann’s triple were struggling to get a foothold in the game. Things were looking better for them in the early stages of the fourth end though until Keith Cooke produced another superb bowl to take shot. Jack Pye & Chris Mann took some time studying the head before Mann stepped up to play a forcing shot but he failed to get past a short bowl and the score moved to 7-0 in Cooke’s favour. Debbie Pye played two good woods on the fifth end but Roger Steele continued to make life difficult for the defending champions by also producing two class bowls. Cooke looked disappointed when he gave the shot away with his second bowl and Mann used weight in an effort to score more shots but failed and had to be content with picking up just one shot to reduce the deficit to 7-1. With time running out for Mann’s triple they enjoyed a great sixth end scoring three shots and with the score at 7-4 they now at least had realistic hopes of winning the game. Mann’s triple got the better of a somewhat messy start to the seventh end and Mann drew a perfect bowl to the jack with his first wood. Cooke played what looked initially a good bowl but it left Mann still holding three shots. Cooke had more luck with his last wood of the end cutting the count down to just one and with two ends to go the lead was now down to 7-5. Mann’s triple were now visibly playing with more confidence than they had displayed earlier in the game and mother & son Debbie & Jack Pye drew good woods into the head. All their good work was cancelled out though by a fabulous final bowl by Keith Cooke that took shot and increased their lead to 9-5 going into the last end. Two superb bowls by Jack Pye gave his triple hope on the final end but it was Eddie Costello, Roger Steele & Keith Cooke who emerged with another single to win the final by 10-5. In the semi-finals Cooke’s triple played Pam Pearce, Mary Fox & Barry Fox of Cambridgeshire and kept just ahead of their opponents throughout a tight game that they won 7-3 after winning the last two ends. The other semi-final was a keenly contested local derby as John Pye, Debbie Sparham & Jon Sparham went down by just one shot to Chris Mann’s triple. Sparham led 4-3 but a dropped three on the next end turned the game in Mann’s favour.

Hempnall take home Potters Shield

 Joan Cann, Bernie Cudden & Paul Baker of Hempnall lifted the Potters Shield after beating Hayley Stratton of Wymondham and Margaret & Derek Barley of Suffolk’s Carlton Colville 8-4 in the final. Baker’s triple started well and led 5-1 after three ends and despite Barley’s best efforts the Hempnall triple kept in front. In the semi-finals Paul Baker’s triple came from behind to beat Barbara Hadler, Colin Hadler & Terry Smith of Kent by 7-6. Terry Smith’s triple led by two shots with two ends remaining but Baker pulled one back on the penultimate end and scored two shots on the last to win. In the other semi-final Derek Barley’s triple were awarded a walkover against Thelma Price, John Price & Alan McCallum when the skip misread the start time of the semi-finals and left the arena. Despite a desperate search for him he could not be located in time to play the match and his playing partners made the decision to forfeit the game. The coveted Most Relaxed Triple prize went to Barry Barsby, Pauline Barsby & Brian Knappett of Harling Rec.

We’re in the money!

The Potters Cash Pairs was won by Wymondham’s Jack Pye & Debbie Sparham who collected the £100 first prize winning all their games with a +48 shot difference. Going into the final session three pairs were in the race for the first prize but Jack Pye & Debbie Sparham turned up the heat as they raced to a terrific 18-0 win. In second place were East Tuddenham’s Geraldine Potter & Wymondham’s Jon Sparham who won all their games but with  +35 shots Jon had to settle for second place behind his high scoring wife. Hayley Stratton & Chris Mann of Wymondham finished one point behind the top two on points with a +42 shots that earned them third place. Barbara & Colin Hadler of Kent went into the last session on maximum points but a 6-6 draw left them in fourth place with a +26 shot difference.

                                                                                                   Posted 30-9-15 

                                                       POTTERS WEEKEND WINNERS

Potters Cup Winners Keith Cooke, Eddie Costello & Roger Steele with Mark Brewer

Potters Shield Winners Paul Baker, Bernie Cudden & Joan Cann with Mark Brewer

Potters £100 Cash Pairs winners Jack Pye & Debbie Sparham with Mark Brewer

Late change in team for West Mids clash

Norfolk Team Manager Selwyn Goldsmith has been forced into yet another team change for Norfolk Premier’s opening Inter-County Championship match away to the West Mids. Jamie Forster, a regular in the Premier team last season in an all Bob Carter triple skipped by former England international Melly Woods, has decided to withdraw from the Norfolk Squad for work related reasons. Phil Watson of Kirby Bedon has been added to the team for Sunday’s match at Solihull having agreed to travel straight to the West Mids from his holiday. The Norfolk Manager has decided to delay naming his actual team formation until the morning of the match.

                                                                                                                                         Posted 28-9-15

Belgian star triumphs in Belfast

Most would have expected more glory for Ireland in the Ramada Plaza Irish Open at Belfast IBC but it was not to be as Dimitri Payne of Belgium beat Ireland’s Andrew Morrison in the final. Payne had already inflicted an 8-5 defeat on another top Irish bowler, Cecil Dillon, in the group stages and his victory moves him to number five in the SMPT World Rankings. In the Plate Final Aidan Corrigan beat Adrian Tanner 11-6 and in the Shield Final Frank Cunningham beat Stephen Mulholland 12-6. Three Irish bowlers head the rankings with Mark Beattie top, Andrew Morrison second and Jal Richardson third. Then comes two Belgians with Jonathan Payne fourth and Dimitri Payne fifth. Ireland’s Joseph Beattie and Pauline Beattie are sixth and seventh respectively while Joel Hager is eighth and fellow Swede Dick Almen ninth. Gary McNabb of Ireland completes the Top 10. The top ranked English player is Dom Reed of Essex in eleventh position. Wymondham & Norfolk stars Chris Mann & Jack Pye are twelfth & sixteenth respectively while Hempnall’s Neil Davidison is thirty-first.  

                                                                                                                                                Posted 21-9-15

Second half sinks Marriott's hopes

Thorpe Marriott B's hopes of denying Wymondham a second straight Summer Cup victory were boosted in the first half when David Knights, Morgan Warnes and Simon Warnes produced a 15-14 victory over Roger Steele, Debbie Sparham and Jack Pye with Simon producing a great attacking last wood of the match to give his triple victory. While Wymondham's Andrew Jackson, Chris Mann and Jon Sparham had to come from behind to beat Dorothy Muttitt, John Jarvis and Richard Perkins 13-11 to level the scores at half time with just a one shot advantage to the defending champions. Hopes of Marriott's good form continuing in the second half were soon quashed when Roger Steele, Debbie Sparham and Jack Pye hit top form to beat Margaret McPherson, Bob McPherson and Richard Perkins by 23-7. With the result becoming apparent on the other mat a late spurge by Andrew Jackson, Chris Mann and Jon Sparham saw them beat David Knights, Morgan Warnes and Simon Warnes 21-7 to give Wymondham an emphatic second half victory.

Presentations were also made out to winner's and runner's up of divisions one and two on the night with ESMBA President George Clarke and NCSMBA Summer Chairman Will Hoggan making the presentations to Bob Carter, Wymondham, First Bus and Horsford Heroes respectively. 


Wymondham celebrating cup success again     

Summer cup finalists Thorpe Marriott B

Division one champions again Bob Carter

Summer Cup showdown set for St Faiths

This Monday (14-9-15) sees Summer Cup holders Wymondham face surprise cup finalists Thorpe Marriott “B” at St Faiths. Thorpe Marriott produced the surprise result of the season knocking out Bob Carter in the quarter-finals. The match is scheduled to begin at 7.30pm and all are welcome to attend. 

 Heroes grab last promotion spot

With only one league match still to be played the relegation & promotion issues have all been decided in the NCSMBA Summer League. In Division One Bob Carter had already been confirmed as champions again with Wymondham runners-up twelve points behind them followed by Kirby Bedon in third place and Halvergate fourth. The relegation spots are filled by Deaf Sports & Hingham Yellow who both finished on 33 points a piece at the foot of the table. As previously reported First Bus are Division Two champions. The runners-up position has been snatched by Horsford Heroes, despite winning one game less than third placed Thorpe Marriott “A” they have finished four points clear of Marriott and claimed the second promotion place.

County Squad Pre-Season Day at Hingham this Sunday

This coming Sunday Norfolk’s County Squad Pre-Season Day takes place at Hingham Sports & Social Club in preparation for the Inter-County Championship season. The strange decision of the ESMBA to cut the number of teams in each group to just three for the 2015/16 season will restrict the number of games for players but it has already been indicated that the competition will revert back to groups of four for the 2016/17 season. The new I.C.C Rinks Competition launched by the ESMBA has met with limited interest by County Associations with arguably the five top Premier County Teams, Cheshire, Hampshire, Norfolk, West Mids & Oxfordshire not entering. In the “A” section twelve of the County Associations have also decided not to enter the event.

McNabb hoping for more success

The Ramada Plaza Irish Open takes place at Belfast IBC this weekend with Ireland’s Gary McNabb hoping to add this title to the UK Open he won at Bromsgrove IBC in August. 131 of the 162 entries are from Ireland among them SMPT World Ranked Number One Mark Beattie. Other top Irish players taking part are Andrew Morrison, Jal Richardson, Pauline Beattie, Cecil Dillon & William Morrison. Likely contenders from England are Dom Reed, Lee Toleman, James Trott & Bronagh Toleman. Swedish World Cup winners Dick Almen & Joel Hager are also taking part as are Jonathan & Dimitri Payne of Belgium, both ranked in the Top 10.     

                                                                                                                                                Posted 13-9-15

                                         Halvergate win at Deaf Sports

In the Summer League a 15-13 win for Gillian Amos, Richard Sutton & Robin Amos was all Deaf Shorts had to savour as visitors Halvergate eased to a 6-2 win. Mike Tate, Ray Lamb & Steven Lamb beat Laura Hawksworth’s triple 15-11 before adding a 13-7 win against Robin Amos. Robbie Lamb’s triple won their second half game by 19-11 against Laura Hawksworth. In Division Two champions First Bus took maximum points at Harling with Bob Oatway’s triple winning 13-8 & 16-9 while Colin Coman’s triple won by 22-4 & 15-13. 

                                                                                                              Posted 6-9-15 

Norfolk Over 60s win in Essex

Norfolk Over 60s produced a good 52-44 points win against Friends of Essex at the impressive Marconi Social Club in Chelmsford on Sunday. The teams consisted of twelve triples per side playing four games each over eight sessions on six mats. Norfolk Over 60s took an early lead winning four games of the opening six games and it was to be a lead Norfolk held on to throughout. Morris Taylor, Sue Fox & Terry Newbybegan with a 12-8 win that was to be the first of four straight wins for them, the only triple to gain maximum points on the day.  Alice Payne, Malcolm Reynolds & Geoff Payne won 11-4, Gill Coleman, Avril Walker & Mike Boswell won 12-3 and Di Quadling, David Quadling & Trish Taylor weighed in with a 15-7 win. Things got even better in the second session as Norfolk moved 18-6 ahead on points after adding five wins from six games. Wendy Tweed, Graham Tweed & Keith Buck won by 11-5, Geraldine Potter, John Jarvis & Ray Lamb won 10-8, Sheila Redwood, Colin Coman & Neil Davidson won 9-7, Will Townsend, Malcolm Southgate & Keith Thomas won 6-5 and David Blundell, Tony Oram & another Graham Mobbs won 9-8. The lead increased yet again in a third session that saw four more wins take Norfolk 26-10 ahead on points. Terry Newby’s triple won heavily by 16-3 while Geoff Payne & Trish Taylor’s triples also both won again. Mick Harris, Alison Rush & Sheila Bragg bounced back from their first session defeat with a 9-7 win. The fourth session was drawn with Norfolk’s wins coming from triples skipped by Neil Davidson, Graham Mobbs & Ray Lamb. Friends of Essex finally found the comeback trail on the fifth session taking four wins to Norfolk’s two. The only Norfolk triples to win were Mike Boswell’s triple with a great 16-2 result and Terry Newby’s triple who won their third game by 14-7. Essex took their new found form into the sixth session to cut Norfolk’s lead to 40-32 as only Neil Davidson & Ray Lamb’s triples won for the visitors. The ship was steadied though on the remaining two sessions which were both drawn 6-6 on points to see Norfolk Over 60’s safely over the finishing line in first place. Winning Norfolk skips on the seventh session were Terry Newby, Trish Taylor & Geoff Payne and on the final session were Keith Buck, Peter Fox & Graham Mobbs.   The match marked the last game in charge of the Friends of Essex team for Tony Hayes who is handing over the reins to Tony Ealham.


                                                                                                                                                         Posted 1-9-15

                                                         Tony Hayes contemplating the result in Chelmsford

Carter are Summer Champions again

Bob Carter has retained the Summer League title after completing their league programme having won thirteen matches and losing just one. Bob Carter beat Halvergate away taking maximum points with Jean Woods, John Turner & David Lamb winning by 16-11 & 23-14 while Jamie Forster, Jason Woods & Melvyn Woods won by 14-12 & 22-7. The return match at Drayton saw Carter win 6-2 with George Clarke, Jason Woods & Melvyn Woods winning 15-9 & 21-5. Carter finished their season with an 8-0 win away to Hingham where John Turner’s triple won 22-10 & 21-7 and Jason Woods’ triple won 18-7 & 21-4. Wymondham finish as runners-up again after winning 6-2 at Diss where Jon Sparham’s triple won 21-8 & 19-9. Kirby Bedon’s 6-2 win at Thorpe Marriott “B” ensured they finished in third place after John Aggas skipped his triple to two wins against Richard Perkins & Simon Warnes.

                                                                                                    Posted 30-8-15

Thorpe Marriott "B" reach Summer Cup Final

Thorpe Marriott “B” have earned a shot at revenge for last season’s 7-1 Summer Cup semi-final defeat against cup holders Wymondham. An excellent 6-2 home win against fellow Division One side Kirby Bedon in this week’s semi-final tie means that Marriott now face Wymondham in the final at St Faiths on 14-9-15. David Knights, Morgan Warnes & Simon Warnes made home advantage count as they opened with a 16-11 win against Carol Aggas, Phil Watson & John Aggas while Dorothy Muttitt, John Jarvis & Richard Perkins beat Shirley Brown, Gerald Chilvers & Joe Brown 11-9 to give Thorpe Marriott “B” a 4-0 interval lead. John Aggas’s Kirby triple beat Richard Perkins 16-15 after the break but Simon Warnes clinched victory beating Joe Brown 16-6.

                                                                                                        Posted 27-8-15

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          David Knights - lead in Simon Warnes' triple that won twice


All change in the Inter-County Championships

Norfolk Premier’s I.C.C match away to Northants Premier has been put back one week to Sunday 29th November as the Northants county venue is unavailable for the original date of the 22nd November. Keith Hawkins, the ESMBA Administrator, has agreed to the date change. West Mids have announced a change of county venue. The I.C.C fixture against Norfolk Premier will now be played at Solihull I.B.C, Brick Kiln Lane, Solihull, B91 3LE.  

                                                                                           Posted 26-8-15

                                                                       Solihull Indoor Bowls Club

Neil Davidson reaches last 16 in UK Open

After the last group games had been played on Sunday morning Norfolk’s Chris Mann, Jack Pye & Neil Davidson were all safely through to the knock-out stages of the UK Open in Bromsgrove. Chris Mann completed his fifth straight win with a comprehensive 21-4 result against Paula Geens of Belgium while Neil Davidson also made it five wins in a row by beating Cheshire’s James Neal 12-8. Jack Pye’s four wins on Saturday proved to be sufficient to see him through despite surprisingly losing his last group game by 13-9 against Sweden’s Ulf Hallstrand. Defending champion Robert Martin of Dorset failed to qualify for the main competition after losing his opening two games. There were few surprise exits this year but Dimitri Payne of Belgium could only finish third in Chris Mann’s group and Devon star Bronagh Toleman was edged out in Group 15 by Irishmen Ryan Abraham & Jal Richardson. 2012 champion Mark Beattie qualified from Group 7 despite only winning three games while 2013 champion Joseph Beattie qualified as the runner-up behind Peter Rees of Wales in Group 21. Wymondham’s Chris Mann could now take a break as he earned a bye into the last 32 but there was no rest for his Wymondham colleague Jack Pye & Neil Davidson of Hempnall. Neil Davidson faced Andy Thompson of Devon and a 14-8 win earned Davidson a place in the last 32.  Jack Pye was up against Dan Blackman of West Sussex and joined his two Norfolk Premier team mates in the last 32 with a 16-11 win. Other contenders through were Joseph Beattie who beat James Trott 10-5, and Mark Beattie who beat Aled Humphries of Wales 16-6. Group 11 winner Pauline Beattie was also still there after a 17-8 win against Alex King. Another big Irish name, Jal Richardson, also came through beating Chris Page of West Sussex 15-8. Top Welsh player Stephen Williams was also still in the hunt beating Ireland’s Lisa Douglas 16-3. Jack Pye was drawn against Stephen Gale of the Isle of Man and on the day Gale proved just too good for Pye who was beaten 16-3 by the Douglas Bay Pirates ace. Few would argue that Chris Mann had a tough task against Northern Ireland’s Jal Richardson of St Marks Portadown. Richardson is ranked number three in the SMPT World Rankings and was English Masters runner-up in 2013 and Irish Open runner-up in 2014. Just like his Wymondham team-mate Jack Pye he found an opponent in blistering form and followed Pye out of the competition losing by 17-5 to the Northern Ireland star. This left three times Norfolk Singles Champion Neil Davidson as Norfolk’s last hope for glory and his opponent was  three times Dutch Indoor Bowls Champion Saskia Schaft who was the last Netherlands player left standing. It proved to be Davidson’s toughest game yet but he scraped home 12-10 on a mat he found difficult and was through to the last 16. Joseph Beattie knocked out Italy’s Antonio Rinaldi 13-11 and Mark Beattie beat fellow Irishman Ryan Abraham 16-5 but Pauline Beattie’s run came to an end losing 13-8 to Andrew Jones of Wales. Jonathan Payne, always a contender in SMPT events, knocked out England’s Michael Ivings 10-5 to keep Belgium’s hopes alive. Scotland’s number one Lawrence Moffat was narrowly beaten 11-8 by Sam Harvey of Wales while an all England clash finished with Paul Pomeroy beating Daniel Winmill 11-4. Two all Welsh battles took place with Philip Ladd beating Martin Harries 9-7 and Stephen Williams beating Peter Rees by one shot. ESMBA 2001 Singles Champion John Manley beat Richard Palmer of Wales 15-8 but two other English players were knocked out by Swedes as Rosa Albrektsson beat West Mids star Chris Willies 10-9 and World Cup hero Dick Almen beat Ken Sleat 15-5.    

Now it was Gary McNabb of Northern Ireland, who had beaten Sibe Laureys of Belgium 11-5, who stood between Neil Davidson and a quarter-final place. But Davidson’s hopes of lifting the UK Masters were shattered as McNabb produced what can only be described as a wonder bowl to win the match 9-8 after planting a toucher into the ditch that was literally half off the mat. Norfolk’s interest in the UK Masters was now at an end but Davidson, Mann & Pye produced some wonderful bowls along the way and did Nelson’s County proud. Joseph Beattie went through to the quarter-finals with a 14-8 win against Andrew Jones but Mark Beattie went out by one shot to Sweden’s Joel Hager. Jal Richardson did not survive long after beating Chris Mann when he lost 12-9 to Sam Harvey while Stephen Williams defeated John Manley 12-6. An all Swedish battle was won by Dick Alman by 9-7 against Rosa Albrektsson. Steven Gale followed up his win against Jack Pye by beating Jonathan Payne 12-10. Paul Pomeroy was left as the sole surviving English player when he beat Philip Ladd of the Isle of Man 12-11. In the quarter-finals Joseph Beattie & Stephen Williams looked the likely lads but both crashed out. Stephen Williams was well beaten by 13-3 against Sweden’s Dick Almen while Joseph Beattie went down 10-7 to Gary McNabb in an all Northern Ireland showdown. Another Swede, Joel Hager, joined Dick Almen in the semi-finals by beating Stephen Gale 13-5. England’s Paul Pomeroy went through beating Sam Harvey 11-5. Gary McNabb of Northern Ireland would now face Joel Hager of Sweden in the semi-finals and Dick Almen of Sweden would play England’s Paul Pomeroy. With Hager and Almen having been part of the Swedish team that caused a sensational on Friday by beating both Ireland and England to win the World Cup many must have wondered if they were to complete a fantastic three days for Sweden by reaching the UK Open final. It was not to be though as Ireland’s Gary McNabb beat Hager 11-9 and England’s Paul Pomeroy beat Almen 12-9. In the final the trophy returned to Ireland after a one year absence as Gary McNabb triumphed. That brought to a close another highly successful SMP weekend of short mat bowls. 


                                                 Hempnall's Neil Davidson pictured with Dutch star Saskia Schaft

Remarkable first day for Norfolk bowlers in UK Open

Wymondham’s Chris Mann & Jack Pye and Hempnall’s Neil Davidson enjoyed a remarkable first day at the SMPT UK Open in Bromsgrove where 144 short mat bowlers from 16 nations took to the mats. The Norfolk bowlers won every single one of the twelve games they played and are all three points clear in their respective groups with just one group game to play on Sunday morning before the knock-out stage commences. Drawn in Group One Neil Davidson opened with games against the two Irish players and after beating David Arthurs 16-12 followed that up with a 14-8 win against Glenn Harvey. In his third game he faced Nigel Reed of Essex and produced an eleven shot win beating Reed 16-5. His final game was against Haken Herne of Sweden and he saved the best till last racing to a huge 23-1 victory. Davidson leads his group three points clear of James Neal. In Group Five Jack Pye opened with a 15-11 win against a former World Champion James Smith of Wonford SMBC in Devon. Pye followed up this excellent result with a 13-6 win against George Tanner of Ireland. He then completed a hat-trick of wins beating Julian Ellsmore 16-11. His fourth victim was Devon’s Paul Pomeroy who he defeated by 12-8 to lead his group three points ahead of Pomeroy. Chris Mann, who the previous day had captained England to the runner-up spot in the SMPT World Cup, also opened with successive wins beating Bill Burns of England 11-7 and Steven Durcan of the Isle of Man 9-8. Mann then beat the highly rated Dimitri Payne of Belgium by 10-9 before finishing the day with an 11-8 win against Aled Humphreys of Wales. Mann leads his group three points clear of Payne. Defending champion Robert Martin of Wool SMBC in Dorset suffered the worst possible start to the defence of his title when he lost his first two games. A 12-10 defeat against Cornwall’s Dennis Shorthouse was quickly followed by an 8-7 loss to Sweden’s Rosa Albrektsson but he finally got a win on the board in his third game beating Louis Helsen of Belgium 14-8. World number one Mark Beattie of Ireland was also slow off the mark losing 10-8 to Craig Evans of Wales but hit back with a vengeance beating England’s Chris Blackman 17-2 and then beat Christopher Hillier of Wales 10-9. Scotland’s Lawrence Moffat made a good start beating Norway’s Ann-Katrin Kristiansen 19-6 and Ireland’s Angus Barnes 21-3 while Ireland’s PJ Gallagher romped to a 25-1 win against England’s Karl Hudson and also beat Sweden’s Eva Nelson 21-8. Another top Irish bowler Jal Richardson beat Devon’s Bronagh Toleman 13-5 and added a 13-9 win against Sweden’s Bente Dahlgren. Italy’s Antonio Rinaldi was the early pacesetter in Group 12 beating English players Matt Chapman & John Parnell while Ireland’s Pauline Beattie did likewise in Group 11 beating Norway’s Rune Klovtveit 14-5 and Ireland’s Don McNamara 12-10. Former England Singles Champion Lee Toleman of Devon opened with three wins in Group 8 as did Dave Summers and in Group 6 Jonathan Payne of Belgium won his first three games by 12-11, 9-8 & 14-7. A massive battle was on in Group 4 with Stephen Williams of Wales and England’s James Trott producing three wins apiece while Dom Reed of Essex looked in control of Group 3 with three straight wins. There were mixed fortunes for Sweden’s World Cup heroes from the previous day. Joel Hager started well with wins of 14-9 & 20-5 while Dick Almen also won his first two games. Jorgen Karlsson though was suffering a World Cup hangover as he lost his opening two games while Tommy Dahlgren lost two of his first three games.

England lose SMPT World Cup Final to Sweden

There was bitter disappointment for an England team captained by Wymondham’s Chris Mann as they were beaten in the final of the SMPT Bond Bowls World Cup held at Bromsgrove IBC. There were shocks galore in the inaugural World Cup as rank outsiders Sweden produced remarkable performances against hot favourites Ireland in the semi-finals and yet again against England in the final to become the first winners of the SMPT World Cup. In the group stages England swept to victory in Group “B” winning both their matches by a maximum 6-0 on points. In their opening match against the Netherlands Wymondham’s Jack Pye beat Esther De Groot 12-5, Chris Mann beat Frans Roberts 18-10, Essex star Dom Reed beat Saskia Schaft 16-3 and Devon’s James Trott stormed to a 20-2 win against Jan Reinders. Norway were England’s next opponents and also found themselves blown out of the water. Jack Pye swept majestically to a 26-1 win against Rune Klovtveit, Chris Mann won 17-11 against Lars-Rune Lauritzen, Dom Reed beat Ann-Katrin Kristiansen 22-3 and James Trott completed the rout beating Esben Lund 21-9. Norway beat the Netherlands 5-1 in the remaining match to finish second in the group. In Group “A” the Irish team comprising of Mark Beattie, Andrew Morrison, Jal Richardson & Joseph Beattie began with a potentially tricky match against a Welsh team containing multi champion Stephen Williams in their line-up. The match went according to the form book though as Ireland emerged as winners with three wins and a draw. Andrew Morrison edged out Stephen Williams by 10-9 while Jal Richardson & Joseph Beattie both won. Mark Beattie was held to a 10-10 draw by Sam Harvey in the remaining game. Ireland secured top spot in the group with maximum points against the Isle of Man with Andrew Morrison top scoring with a 17-5 win against Jayne Smith. Isle of Man sprang a surprise beating Wales in the remaining match. Welsh wizard Stephen Williams beat Jayne Smith 12-6 but that proved to be their only win as Isle of Man secured the runner-up position in the group. In Group “C” Belgium opened with a maximum 6-0 points win against the Rest of the World team with Jonathan Payne top scorer beating Italy’s Antonio Rinaldi 15-4. They then made sure of top spot with a solid 5-1 win against Sweden with Louis Helsen beating Tommy Dahlgren 17-13, Sibe Laureys beating Jorgen Karlsson 10-5 and Jonathan Payne beating Joel Hager 11-9. Sweden’s only win was produced by Dick Almen who beat Dimitri Payne 13-8. Sweden fared somewhat better against the Rest of the World with overall shots earning them a 4-2 points win after both sides collected two wins apiece, just enough to earn them a place in the semi-finals. With England facing Belgium in the semi-finals, and favourites Ireland facing rank outsiders Sweden, it looked odds on for an England v Ireland final but obviously Sweden had other ideas. The Irish were shocked as Sweden, who had shown little sign of being genuine contenders in the group stage, produced a giant killing performance to dump Ireland out of the World Cup. Joel Hager overcame Mark Beattie by 15-5 while Dick Almen joined in the fun beating Andrew Morrison 11-5. The other two games went Ireland’s way with Jal Richardson beating Jurgen Karlsson 11-7 and Joseph Beattie beating Tommy Dahlgren 12-5 but with 38 shots to 33 Sweden had done the impossible by beating the mighty Irish and making it through to the World Final. In the other semi-final England made no mistakes as they disposed of Belgium 6-0 on points. Captain Chris Mann enjoyed a 14-5 win against Jonathan Payne, Jack Pye beat Sibe Laureys 16-6, Dom Reed beat Dimitri Payne 14-7 and James Trott beat Louis Helsen by two shots. The stage was now set for an England v Sweden final, something that few would have predicted. England had a great start with Chris Mann leading 6-0 after four ends against Joel Hager. At the midway stage England led in three of the four games with only Jorgen Karlsson winning for the Swedes against Jack Pye and hopes were high of an England victory. But just as they did against Ireland the Swedes launched a determined comeback to put spectators on to the edge of their seats. When Dick Almen took three shots against Dom Reed, Tommy Dahlgren took three shots against James Trott and Joel Hager scored a full house against Chris Mann the tide turned in Sweden’s favour. In an incredible finish Dick Almen took two shots on the last end to earn a 9-9 draw against Dom Reed but Chris Mann hung on to beat Joel Hager 10-9. The third game came to an end with Jorgen Karlsson beating Jack Pye 10-8 leaving James Trott needing three shots on his last end against Tommy Dahlgren if England were to avoid a shock defeat. Despite Trott’s best efforts he could only take two shots leaving him and Dahlgren level on 11-11 as Sweden celebrated a World Cup victory that no-one in the sport would have predicted.   


First Bus Div Two champions

First Bus are now confirmed as Div Two champions and have secured a return to the top flight after Horsford Heroes were held to a 4-4 draw by visitors Thorpe Marriott “A”. The performance of the night was by Horsford’s Nicky James, Sue Fox & Jane James who won 22-8 but Marriott did enough to share the points and keep their hopes of promotion alive while wrecking any hopes Horsford had of finishing top. Thorpe Marriott “A” also won 6-2 at Harling where Jenny Walker, Ted Redwood & Tony Turner won their games by 23-10 & 17-8. Iris Smith, Angela Bond & Gerald Palframan scored a consolation win of 23-4 to earn the home side two points. Windows won 6-2 at home to Harling with Pam Daynes, Diane Boswell & David Walker winning 24-9. Watton Green took all eight points at home to Forncett with skips Don Paffey & Richard Adams winning two games each. In Div One Carter moved effortlessly towards retaining their title with an 8-0 win at Deaf Sports. John Turner’s triple won their games by 15-9 & 15-8 while Melvin Woods won his games by 16-9 & 15-10. Halvergate won 6-2 at home to Hingham Yellow with Robbie Lamb’s triple top scoring with a 25-5 first half win although they lost their second game 15-13 to Gordon Wilcox. Hingham also went down 6-2 at home to Kirby Bedon with John Aggas winning twice by 11-10 & 14-9 while Joe Brown drew both his games. Thorpe Marriott “B” triple David Knights, Morgan Warnes & Simon Warnes won 15-8 & 12-10 as their side drew 4-4 away to Kirby Bedon. Another tight match at Kirby saw the home side edge home 5-3 against Diss. Terry Newby’s Diss triple were unbeaten beating Phil Watson 14-12 and drawing 15-15 against Joe Brown.

                                                                                                                                                 Posted 22-8-15

Worlds place beckons for Open Pairs winners

With many top line players in action at the SMPT Bond Bowls World Championships and the UK Open at Bromsgrove IBC this weekend the ESMBA Pairs Event at Church Gresley IBC has been somewhat overshadowed. An event billed as the Open Pairs will be played on Saturday with the winners qualifying to represent England in the other version of the World Championships hosted by the ESMBA in March next year. Chris Mann, Jack Pye & Neil Davidson are all in action at Bromsgrove but there is still no shortage of Norfolk bowlers playing in Derbyshire. The Norfolk pair who look to have the best chance are Melvin Woods of Bob Carter & Simon Warnes of Horsford BC, both regulars in the Norfolk Premier side. Jamie Forster & Jason Woods of Bob Carter are also in action as are Halvergate’s Ray & Robbie Lamb. Thorpe Marriott veteran George Clarke teams up with junior bowler Ryan Fox of Halvergate to complete the list of all Norfolk pairings. Halvergate’s David Lamb is confident of doing well and he is partnered by Staffordshire’s Alan Jones while Bob Carter’s Jean Woods is playing with former World Pairs Champion Babs Morokutti of Essex and young Horsford BC & England international Morgan Warnes is playing with Somerset’s James Corns. Other pairs likely to be among the leading contenders include Ben Render of North Yorks & Gareth Stanway of Cheshire, Gareth Davies & Dave Wiggins of Oxfordshire, Jason McLean of Hampshire & Grant Soller of Cheshire and Barry Hedges & Adam Sultana of Essex.

                                                                                                                                Posted 20-8-15

                                         England & Halvergate bowler David Lamb looking to earn himself a World Pairs place

Marriott lose as Carter display championship form

Summer League Division One action saw defending champions Bob Carter collect another eight point maximum away to Thorpe Marriott “B”. George Clarke, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods won their games by 14-12 & 20-6 while Jean Woods, Nigel Willard & David Lamb won by 12-9 & 18-16. Halvergate enjoyed a great start in their away match at Thorpe Marriott with Mike Tate, Ray Lamb & Robbie Lamb winning 18-6 against David Knights, Morgan Warnes & Simon Warnes and Robbie Lamb’s triple adding a 14-12 win against Richard Perkins. The home side dusted themselves down though and hit back in the second half with Warnes beating Steven Lamb 15-7 while Margaret McPherson, Bob McPherson & John Jarvis entered the fray beating Robbie Lamb’s triple 17-12 to force a 4-4 draw. Kirby Bedon proved too strong for Hingham as they swept to an 8-0 home win. Carol Aggas, John Aggas & Phil Watson won their games 22-5 & 29-4 while Shirley Brown, Jimmy Dye & Joe Brown won by 20-4 & 13-10. Morris Taylor, Trish Taylor & Terry Newby of Diss were in good form at Deaf Sports where they beat John Jeffery’s triple 12-8 before romping to a 17-6 win against Caroline Mohamed, Laura Hawksworth & Robin Amos. The home side’s wins came from Robin Amos against Bill Francis and John Jeffery against Keith Buck in a match that saw the sides draw 4-4 on points and 49-49 on shots. In Division Two First Bus moved into top gear in their drive for promotion. Bob Oatway’s triple won 16-10 & 13-11 in a 6-2 home win against Forncett with Colin Coman’s triple adding a 21-12 win. In their next match First Bus swept to an 8-0 home win against Harling with Bob Oatway winning 20-9 & 19-6 while Colin Coman won by 21-4 & 12-8. Pacemakers Horsford Heroes suffered a shock 6-2 home defeat at the hands of Forncett. Mike Smail, Bryan Preece & Peter Lock did the damage with wins of 16-9 & 13-12. Forncett also won 6-2 at Watton Yellow where Linda Preece beat Roger Braham 16-12 and then beat Daphne Braham 14-9 while Martin Humphreys added an 18-8 win against Roger Braham. In the Summer Cup quarter-finals Halvergate won 8-0 at home to Hingham Yellow with Keith Cooke winning 21-10 & 18-7 while Robbie Lamb won by 20-6 & 18-9.

                                                                                                                                         Posted 15-8-15

Chris Mann to captain England in “The Battle of Bromsgrove”

Next week sees the first SMPT Bond Bowls World Cup take place at Bromsgrove IBC with Wymondham & Norfolk stars Chris Mann & Jack Pye key members of the England team. Mann will captain the England side that also includes Dom Reed of Essex & James Trott of Devon. Ireland will undoubtedly start as firm favourites with a team comprising of Mark Beattie, Joseph Beattie, Jal Richardson & Andrew Morrison. England will be pleased with the draw that puts them in Group “B” with Norway and the Netherlands and it would be a major shock if Chris Mann’s team failed to win this group with ease. Ireland are drawn in Group “A” and will face Wales and the Isle Of Man. Wales, with the brilliant Stephen Williams in their team, are sure to be gunning for the favourites. Group “C” comprises of Belgium, Sweden and the Rest of the World team. Belgium’s Jonathan & Dimitri Payne should ensure that their side progress from this group. In a hectic few days of short mat bowls at Bromsgrove IBC the World Cup is followed by the SMPT UK Open. Norfolk has three players taking part with Chris Mann & Jack Pye joined by Norfolk Singles Champion Neil Davidson of Hempnall. Davidson’s Group 1 includes Nigel Reed of Essex, James Neal of Cheshire, Sweden’s Hakas Herne and Ireland’s David Arthurs & Glenn Harvey. If Davidson replicates the form that has seen him dominate the Norfolk Singles in recent years he has every chance of winning this group although 2013 England Triples Champion James Neal may have other ideas. In Jack Pye’s Group 5 James Smith & Paul Pomeroy will provide stiff opposition while Sweden’s Ulf Hallstrand & Ireland’s George Tanner also stand in his way. Chris Mann has tasted success at this level before and will be the man to beat in Group 18 that includes Dimitri Payne & Paula Geens of Belgium and Steven Durcan of the Isle of Man. The draw has been kind to defending champion Robert Martin in Group 2 and he should progress through. Dom Reed is favourite to win Group 3 while Stephen Williams versus James Trott looks a tasty game in Group 4. Belgium’s Jonathan Payne stands out in Group 6 while in Group 7 Ireland’s Mark Beattie, winner in 2012, will have Chris Page & Chris Blackman on his case. Former England Singles Champion Lee Toleman is the big name in Group 8 but Groups 9 & 10 look wide open. Ireland’s Pauline Beattie starts as firm favourite in Group 11 while John Lax of England will fancy his chances in Group 12 although Ireland’s Lisa Douglas & Italy’s Antonio Rinaldi could feature. Group 13 looks interesting with three Irishman, Vincent Dornan, Nigel Charles & Andrew Cockcroft joined by Paul Walker of New Zealand, Jan Reiders of Netherlands & Stephen Gale of the Isle of Man. Michael Ivings is one of three English bowlers in Group 14 which also includes Ireland’s Gary Moore and two Swedish players Lars Hansen & Bengt Johansson. Two big guns clash in Group 15 where Ireland’s Jal Richardson will face current England Pairs Champion Bronagh Toleman while Group 16 is a real mixed bag. Mark “Bomber” Lancaster of West Sussex should make it into the knockouts from Group 17 but will have to face the vastly experienced Lawrence Moffat of Scotland. This is another interesting group which sees Lancaster also playing Kevin Males of Cyprus, Ann-Katrin Kristiansen of Norway, Angus Barnes of Ireland & Maggie Smith of England. The draw has produced a Group 19 made up of three Welsh and three English players with no out and out favourite. England’s Dan Winmill of Somerset should feature strongly in Group 20 while 2013 champion Joseph Beattie is the man to beat in Group 21. John Manley is always hard to beat and should win Group 22 in which Andreas Hahn flies the flag for Germany. West Mid’s Chris Willies should win Group 23 while Group 24’s winner should be Andrew Morrison of Ireland. Dick Almen of Sweden & Roger Hammond of France also feature in this group.                                                                                                                                          Posted 14-8-15

Wymondham claim first name on Challenge Cup

Trailing 14-6 from the first leg back in May, Wymondham were going to have a make a great start to their second leg at home if they were going to put Halvergate under pressure and they did just that with Jack Pye and Chris Mann producing solid wins in the singles against Keith Cooke and David Lamb with wins of 20-5 & 10-4. The fours session saw Halvergate register their first win of the night as David Knights, Steven Lamb, Simon Warnes and Morgan Warnes beat Hayley Stratton, Mikey George, Andy Jackson and Jon Sparham 10-6 but Roger Steele, Billie Barker, Melvyn Barker and Debbie Sparham made sure of an 8-2 first session win as they beat Donna Lamb, Ray Lamb, Roy Walker and Robert Lamb 9-3. Having made the start they needed Wymondham's Jack Pye was again in fine form in the singles as he completed his second win of the night beating David Lamb 11-6 but Keith Cooke looked to be edging Halvergate towards the six points they needed to force a tie-breaker as he lead 9-5 with one end remaining in his match against Chris Mann but the SMPT highest ranked English player from last season was not to be denied and his positive play earned him four shots for a crucial 9-9 draw which saw the two teams tied at 17-17 with six points still to play for going into the final rinks session. Morgan Warnes' four was the only positive for Halvergate winning both match's on the night, this time by 8-5 against Debbie Sparham's block but a big 20-6 win for Jon Sparham's four against Robbie Lamb's block sealed the bonus shots and a 7-3 session win which gave Wymondham a tight 21-19 win overall. Both ties produced pivotal moments and made for a great two legged final. 


Wymondham team with the Challenge Cup    


Cup organiser Chris Mann presenting Wymondham Captain Melvyn Barker with the trophy

                                                                   Posted 11-8-15

Thorpe Marriott "B" knock Carter out of cup

There was a major shock in the Norfolk Summer Cup as Thorpe Marriott “B” defeated Bob Carter 6-2. Marriott made home advantage count in the first half as Dorothy Muttitt, John Jarvis & Richard Perkins beat George Clarke, Jamie Forster & Melvin Woods 12-10 while David Knights, Bob McPherson & Simon Warnes beat Nigel Willard, David Lamb & John Turner 13-12. Margaret McPherson, John Jarvis & Richard Perkins sealed victory after the break with a 15-12 win against John Turner’s triple while Melvin Woods’ triple picked up Carter’s only win against Simon Warnes. Thorpe Marriott have been drawn at home to Kirby Bedon in the semi-finals. Halvergate won their quarter-final tie at home to Hingham Yellow and have been rewarded with a home tie in the semi-finals against holders Wymondham. In Division One struggling Deaf Sports entertained title chasing Wymondham but severely damaged the visitors chances as they held them to a 4-4 draw. It was a bad night for all County triple Roger Steele, Melvin Barker & Jon Sparham as they lost their opening game by 22-10 to N Tonnington, Richard Sutton & John Jeffery after the Deaf Sports triple had built a 15-4 lead after ten ends. In their second game Sparham’s triple went down by 20-10 to Dennis Kemble, Laura Hawksworth & Robin Amos. Wymondham’s Jack Pye & Chris Mann, with Mary Fisher leading for them in the first half and Billie Barker in the second, won their games by 12-6 & 21-7 to earn their side the draw. Hingham Yellow beat Deaf Sports 6-2 in a vital relegation battle with Gordon Wilcox skipping his triple to wins of 12-8 & 13-10. Windows had a good week in Division Two. They won 5-3 at Forncett where Mike Boswell collected two wins and won 6-2 at home to Thorpe Marriott “A.” There were two defeats for Watton Yellow who lost 6-2 at Harling and the following night suffered a 5-3 home defeat against Thorpe Marriott “A.”
                                                                                                                                     Posted 9-8-15

Teresa’s Troops visit Yorkshire’s White Rose League

Norfolk Over 60’s hit the road again for yet another of the social bowling weekends organized by Teresa Goldsmith. Bowlers met early on Friday morning at Notcutts Garden Centre in Norwich where the coach, with Roger at the wheel, picked us up to begin the journey to Yorkshire where two days of bowling had been arranged with North Yorkshire’s White Rose League. A short stop at the Farm Shop Café in Lincolnshire gave everyone the chance of a cuppa, and a bite to eat if desired, before the next stage of the journey to the lovely town of Knaresborough for lunch and a look around. Several members of the group found their way to Wetherspoon’s Crown Inn to take advantage of their Fish Friday deal while others found various tea shops and cafes etc. Some of the group made their way down to the trail by the River Nidd while others took advantage of the fantastic views over the River Nidd from the area by Knaresborough Castle. Another attraction was the three Knaresborough Rooks being displayed by their female keeper in medieval clothing. The “olde-worlde” feel of Knaresborough was appreciated by all on our visit to the town and the sunny weather made it all the better. Mid afternoon we made our way back to the car park to board the coach for the last leg of the journey to our hotel in Huby. Teresa phoned ahead to advise the hotel of our arrival time and when we reached the hotel staff were on hand to help with luggage while other staff had prepared teas and coffees to greet us in reception, a lovely touch. This was a service level that the hotel maintained throughout the weekend with the staff always helpful, jovial and on hand to help with any problems or requests. After enjoying our cuppa we made our way to our rooms to unpack and make ourselves at home. For the dinner we were joined by Arthur Jackson of NYSMBA who had organized the weekend’s bowling, Arthur is well known to Norfolk bowlers for his visits to see us at both Hingham and Potter’s Resort in Hopton-on-Sea. The meal was excellent as were all meals throughout the weekend and the service was quick and with a smile from all their catering staff who seemed to delight in their work. This was where we all met Leonardo from Columbia. Leonardo is an absolute gem in the restaurant, always smiling & joking and intent on being the heart and soul of the hotel. Every restaurant should have a Leonardo and I hope that the hotel owners realize what an asset they have!  

After breakfast on Saturday morning it was back on the coach for the short journey to the excellent Galtres Centre in Easingwold for the match between the White Rose League and Norfolk Over 60’s. Before we boarded the coach a group photo was taken outside the hotel reception, just like it was a few years back when staying here before. It also gave some of us the chance to remember the bowlers and friends who were with us then and are now sadly departed.

The Galtres Centre is a very large Community Centre near the Market Square in the centre of Easingwold and the people of that town are fortunate indeed to have such a place. The venue offers concerts & shows, it has a purpose built fitness suite, a large sports hall, a rifle range, all weather floodlit pitches and a bar. Every town should have a community centre like this but unfortunately few do. The match was played on eight mats with the teams comprising of sixteen triples each, playing four games of seven ends duration. The first session was drawn 8-8 on points with Norfolk’s Pauline Barsby, Ted Redwood & John Poynter leading the way winning 14-2 while triples skipped by Peter Walker, Trevor Pinchen & Graham Tweed also won. The stalemate continued in the second session with Norfolk’s wins provided by Trish Taylor, Graham Tweed, Tony Oram & Mike Greenacre. Maybe the long day on Friday began to take a toll on the Norfolk players but the next three sessions saw the White Rose League take control and move way ahead on points. The home side won the third session 11-5, the fourth session 13-3 and the fifth session by a resounding 14-2 margin. The sixth session saw a revival in Norfolk’s fortunes with a solid 12-4 win to reduce the deficit to 58-38 on points. The seventh & eighth sessions were close with White Rose League winning the first of those sessions 9-7 and Norfolk winning the final session 9-7. The final score was 74-54 to the White Rose League on points, 419-393 on shots. Then it was back on the coach for the hotel and another super meal in the restaurant.

After a hearty breakfast on Sunday we returned to the Galtry Centre for a day of social bowling arranged by Arthur Jackson. With bowlers having to draw a playing number out prior to play, and having to study the notice for mats, session times & playing positions the 10am start quickly went out the window. With only one set of playing order notices on display bowlers crowded round to see where they were playing causing further delays. There also seemed to be confusion over one unexpected extra bowler being there from the White Rose League leaving one Norfolk bowler without a game but the days play finally got under way after Norfolk organiser Teresa Goldsmith elected to be left out to solve the problem. The format had players changing triples each game, and playing in different playing positions. This did result in occasionally the wrong player turning up on a mat, and on one occasion actually starting a game, but it eventually settled down as bowlers got to grips with the format. The system certainly provided an alternative to the norm but I did feel that some bowlers, only used to playing lead, were uncomfortable playing in number two or skip positions and were quite relieved when those particular games came to an end. This also applied to players with medical problems who had trouble coping with the demands of skipping. After individual players “shots for” were added up at the end of play a bowler from each side was awarded with a bottle of wine as the day’s winners. They were Dennis Jarvis of the White Rose League and Carolina Lirocchi of the Norfolk Over 60’s. We then departed the Galtry Centre and returned to the hotel for another excellent meal on Sunday evening. Then it was time to relax with some players enjoying a quiet drink or two and some playing cards etc and Arthur returned to the hotel for a drink with some of us.

Our last breakfast on Monday morning was followed by the task of loading all the suitcases etc onto the coach and Teresa checking that everyone had returned their keys to reception and hadn’t forgotten anything. Leonardo and various staff members came out to the front of the hotel to see us off and in his usual Basil Fawlty way Leonardo waved us away from the hotel with a “Go away – clear off” gesture! We then headed to Harrogate for a two and a half hour visit where Teresa had the famous Betty’s Tea Room firmly in her sights, as did several other of our ladies. That visit left several of our gentlemen bemoaning that it was the most expensive cuppa and a cake they had ever purchased while the ladies were more than happy and saying they would love to return next time we visit the area. (Start saving up now lads!) After a look around the shops we took a seat in the sunshine near the superb flower beds of Harrogate and awaited the arrival of Roger and the coach. It was then time to get Norfolk firmly in our sights with a planned stop in Lincolnshire at the Farm Shop Café again. The journey back was not an easy one, with heavy traffic encountered and on a hot day the air-con failed as well. We finally made it to the Farm Shop for the driver’s rest break while we had lunch. Amazing how quickly this café can turn out a meal! After leaving the Farm Shop we made good time until just past Kings Lynn where a minor traffic accident on the A47 had caused a long tailback and once again we were reduced to a start-stop crawl. Finally past the emergency vehicles, and the cars involved, we were back to normal driving conditions and Roger soon had us back to Notcutts Garden Centre to unload the coach and collect the cars after another enjoyable long weekend away!

                                                                                                                                     Posted 5-8-15

The Norfolk Over 60's team outside the Burn Hall Hotel

Warm welcome at the Burn Hall Hotel

Teresa Goldsmith, David Chadwick & Val Vardy in Knaresborough

Arthur Jackson, White Rose League organiser

Action at the impressive Easingwold venue

Burn Hall Hotel's Leonardo with Teresa Goldsmith

Alison Rush with Diane & David Quadling

Norfolk's Sunday winner Carolina Lirocchi

White Rose League's Sunday winner Dennis Jarvis

Rest in Peace Rita Secker

The NCSMBA is saddened to learn of the death of Rita Secker of Connaught BC. The funeral will take place at St Faith’s Crematorium on Tuesday 4th August at 11am, family flowers only please. Donations can be made to Cancer Research UK and sent to The Funeral Director, R J Bartram, Russell House, 17 Theatre Street, Dereham, NR19 2EW or can be given on the day. Rita’s request is could everyone wear a little something red. Members of the Association will be thinking of Owen and their family at this sad time.


West Mids announces the death of Charlie Newman

The West Mids SMBA has announced that Charlie Newman has passed away. Charlie, who was in his 90’s, played for Marston Green and was still playing bowls until the beginning of the year. He was a member of the first West Midlands SMBA Committee when it was founded in 1985, along with the late Roy Stokes and Bob Weafer.

                                                                                                                                              Posted 31-7-15

Wymondham & Kirby Bedon through to semi-finals

Norfolk Summer Cup holders Wymondham are safely through to this year’s semi-finals after producing a great second half showing at Forncett. Any ideas of an easy ride for the favourites were swiftly forgotten as Peter Lock’s Forncett triple led for most of the opening game against Jon Sparham’s triple. A late surge by Mary Fisher, Chris Mann & Jon Sparham put pressure on home skip Peter Lock but he produced the winning bowl on the last end to see his triple home by 15-13. Roger Steele, Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye were also involved a tough game against Tony Ottewell, Keith Humphreys & Linda Preece but emerged with a 15-13 to level the match on points and shots at half-time. After the interval it was a totally different story though as the visitors destroyed Forncett’s cup dreams with Jack Pye winning 27-4 and Jon Sparham’s triple, with Hayley Stratton subbing for Mary Fisher, winning 24-5. Kirby Bedon also found themselves under first half pressure at home to First Bus.  Julie Cummins, Lesley Crowe & Colin Coman took an early lead against Shirley Brown, Jimmy Dye & Joe Brown and looked on their way to a win but a comeback from the home triple  earned them a 14-13 win. On the other mat Teresa Goldsmith, Gerald Chilvers & Selwyn Goldsmith led for most of the game against Muriel Murdock, Linda Tooes & Bob Oatway but Oatway’s triple clawed their way back to level the game at 13-13 with an end to play. After playing his final bowl Bob Oatway held two shots but Goldsmith produced a backhand winner with his last wood for a 14-13 win. After the break Bob Oatway’s triple, with Eddie Costello subbing for Muriel Murdock, beat Joe Brown’s triple 18-15 but the tie was decided by Jill Watson, Gerald Chilvers & Phil Watson who stormed to a 21-6 win against Elaine Oatway, Lesley Crowe & Colin Coman for a 6-2 points win. Summer League Division One action saw title contenders Wymondham take maximum points at home to Diss Green. Mikey George, Chris Mann and Jon Sparham beat Terry Newby’s triple 14-5 after leading throughout their first half game. Roger Steele, Debbie Sparham and Jack Pye beat Graham Mobbs’ triple 23-8 after making a great start to lead 10-0 after just three ends and Wymondham led 4-0 at the interval. Jack Pye’s triple won their second game 19-11 against Terry Newby’s triple but only after a very competitive battle against determined opponents. The night’s biggest win was achieved by Hayley Stratton, Andrew Jackson & Chris Mann who all hit top form in a 30-9 win against Graham Mobbs’ triple as Wymondham kept the pressure on defending champions Bob Carter.

                                                                                                                                   Posted 29-7-15

Diss dream start ends in defeat

Bob Carter recovered from a difficult start to win 6-2 at Diss Green to keep their bid to retain the Summer League Championship title on course. Diss enjoyed a dream start to the match as Bill Francis, Keith Buck & Graham Mobbs opened with a 20-11 win against Nigel Willard, David Lamb & John Turner but Carter’s George Clarke, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods ensured that Carter went in level at halftime by beating Terry Newby’s triple 19-12. After the interval Carter moved up a gear to take both games with John Turner’s triple returning to winning ways with a 14-8 win against Newby while Woods’ triple beat Mobbs 20-4. Halvergate had a successful week picking up two 6-2 wins. At home to Kirby Bedon Robbie Lamb’s triple beat Joe Brown 25-11 and John Aggas 15-14 while Keith Cooke’s triple added a 22-18 win against Joe Brown. Carol Aggas, Phil Watson & John Aggas scored the visitors only win beating Donna Lamb, Roy Walker & Keith Cooke 15-8. Away to Diss it was Keith Cooke’s triple who won both their games beating Terry Newby 17-9 & Graham Mobbs 20-10 while Robbie Lamb’s triple beat Mobbs 11-9. Morris Taylor, Trish Taylor & Terry Newby collected the only Diss win beating Lamb 17-12. Deaf Sports suffered a 5-3 home defeat against Thorpe Marriott “B” with only John Jeffery winning for them courtesy of a 12-8 second half victory against Margaret McPherson, Bob McPherson and John Jarvis. David Knights, Morgan Warnes & Simon Warnes did the damage for the visitors beating John Jeffery 15-9 and drawing their second game 14-14. Dorothy Muttitt, Bob McPherson & John Jarvis scored Marriott’s other win beating Laura Hawksworth 21-12. In the return match a few days later Marriott “B” were held to a 4-4 draw by Deaf Sports who this time had key player Robin Amos available. Gillian Amos, Dennis Kemble & Robin Amos beat David Knights, Bob McPherson & England international Simon Warnes 13-12 in the first half while John Jeffery skipped his triple to a 20-7 win to give Deaf a 4-0 interval lead. Marriott snatched a draw though with a good second half in which Richard Perkins won 20-10 and Simon Warnes won 15-10. In Division Two Windows won 6-2 at Harling where Avril Walker’s triple won 16-7, Keith Halford’s triple won 17-8 and Mike Boswell’s triple won 14-13. Harling also suffered an 8-0 away defeat against Thorpe Marriott “A” with the home side scoring 89 shots to 28. In the first half Marjorie Hall won 25-5 and Sylvia Turner won 20-8 and after the break Ted Redwood added a 22-5 win and Tony Turner won 22-10.      

                                                                                                                               Posted 25-7-15

“Pride of the East” event announced

Following discussions between the County Team Management of Norfolk, Suffolk & Cambridgeshire a “Pride of the East” challenge match will take place at Hingham on Sunday 15th November. It will be a four team event involving Norfolk Premier, Norfolk “A”, Cambridgeshire & Suffolk with teams comprising of twenty players each made up of four triples and four pairs. Discussions are on-going regarding whether this event will be extended or made a regular event on the short mat bowls calendar in East Anglia. Bowlers selected for the British Isles Championships being played the same weekend in Scotland will not be available for selection but with a large squad of players available to the Norfolk Team Manager there should be no problem fielding two teams that day. Four Norfolk players have been named in the England Senior Squad for the 2015/16 season. They are David Lamb & Keith Cooke of Halvergate and Morgan & Simon Warnes of Horsford BC. 52 players have been named in the England Senior Squad from fifteen different counties. Cornwall have the largest number of players in the squad with nine players selected followed by Essex & Somerset with five players each.

Tasty ties in Norwich Cup draw

The Norwich Cup draw for 2015/16, made at the Tens League AGM, served up some tasty ties to whet the appetite for the new season. Last season Wymondham & Hempnall met in the final but South Norfolk League giants Hempnall have been given an early chance of revenge for the defeat that they suffered. Wymondham’s home record though is formidable in the Breckland League so Hempnall’s task will not be an easy one.  Another potential “match of the day” will be played at Halvergate where the Bure League champions entertain the mighty Bob Carter. City of Norwich League champions Horsford BC are drawn at home to Waveney League side Bradwell who will need to come to terms with the difficult home mats early on if they are to progress beyond the first round. Another City League side with a home tie is Sprowston SSC who face the talented Connaught “A” side from Attleborough. East Harling have entered the Norwich Cup for the first time this season and they have been drawn at home to Framingham Earl. In the remaining ties Hevingham are at home to Thorpe Marriott, Forncett entertain Hingham, Kirby Bedon are away to Horsford Heroes and Connaught “B” are at home to First Bus. Tens League delegates heard that Bradwell, who finished bottom of the table last season, have decided to leave the league and will compete in the Waveney League. The Bob Carter delegate, Frank Edy, was presented with the runners-up plaque and cheque for their achievements last season but the presentations to league champions Halvergate could not take place as no delegate attended from the club. 

Andy Thomson MBE at Ely Triples Comp

Cambridgeshire’s Robert Elmore has announced a Triples Competition that will be played at the City of Ely BC on Tuesday 13th October. Competitors will have the chance to meet bowls star Andy Thomson MBE who will be there with the Bowls Bi-Us – Taylor Bowls Roadshow. The competition has a 9am booking on time for a 9-30am start and an entry fee of £15 per triple. An entry form can be found by clicking on the Open Competitions tab for the Ely Comp or clicking here. Ely Triples Comp

                                                                                                                                                    Posted 21-7-15


Carter & Wymondham title race continues

The Summer League Championship race has turned into a two horse race between defending champions Bob Carter and Wymondham. Bob Carter won two more home matches but seem to have caught their rival’s habit of dropping points in the process. Against Kirby Bedon George Clarke, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods were rock solid producing a 20-10 win against John Aggas and a 25-5 win against Joe Brown. Nigel Willard, David Lamb & John Turner beat Joe Brown 22-10 but lost their second half game by 12-10 against Carol Aggas, Jimmy Dye & John Aggas. Another two points slipped away as Carter won 6-2 at home to Thorpe Marriott “B” as Margaret McPherson, Bob McPherson & John Jarvis beat Melvin Woods’ triple 16-15. Carter’s Clarke, Lamb & Turner triple collected two wins while Melvin Woods’ triple beat Simon Warnes’ triple heavily in the second half. Wymondham continued their run of 6-2 home wins with Hingham Yellow their latest victims. Jack Pye skipped his home triple to wins of 14-11 & 14-8 while Mary Fisher, Andrew Jackson & Jon Sparham added an 18-5 win. Hingham’s two points were picked up by Margaret Hunter, Graham Tweed & Keith Thomas who beat Jon Sparham 16-13. Wymondham finally collected a maximum 8-0 home win with the visit of bottom of the table Deaf Sports. Jack Pye’s triple won by 19-8 & 20-10 while Jon Sparham’s triple added wins of 19-6 & 20-9 against a side facing relegation. Deaf Sports also suffered a 6-2 home defeat against Kirby Bedon as Carol Aggas, Phil Watson & John Aggas won by 17-10 & 16-7 while Shirley Brown, Gerald Chilvers & Joe Brown beat John Jeffery’s triple 11-9. Hingham drew 4-4 at home to Diss but suffered an 8-0 home defeat against Halvergate as Keith Cooke hit top form with wins of 29-5 & 21-8. The top of the table clash in Division Two saw Horsford Heroes win 6-2 at home to First Bus. Peter Fox’s triple won by 16-10 & 13-9 for the home side with Chris Woodhouse’s triple adding a 15-12 win. J Cummins, Lesley Crowe & Colin Coman earned the away team two points with a 24-13 win against Jane James. Forncett were held to a 4-4 draw by visitors Watton Yellow as Daphne Braham won twice for Watton. Forncett were involved in another 4-4 draw in their next game away to Windows where home star Mike Boswell won twice.

                                                                                                                       Posted 19-7-15


John Richardson – Rest in Peace

The Norfolk Short Mat Bowls Association is sad to learn of the death of John Richardson who passed away earlier today. John, of Hevingham SMBC, served as Chairman of the NCSMBA from 1990 until 1996 and then served as President of the Association until he retired from the position in 2007. John was a man of integrity and epitomized what a short mat bowler should be. He was proud to wear the green blazer of Norfolk and was a member of the Norfolk team in the early days of the sport. He served the county with distinction and was always on hand when needed to support short mat bowls in the county. He will be greatly missed by all his many friends in the sport. Members of the Association will be thinking of Betty and the rest of the family at this sad, sad time.The Funeral Service will take place at St Faiths Crematorium on Friday 31st of July, 11.45am. Family flowers only please. Donations may be given if desired to either Friends of St Faiths Surgery or Big C and can be sent to Ivan Fisher Independent Funeral Home, The Old Bank, 2-4 Norwich Road, Aylsham, Norfolk, NR11 6BN. 

                                                                                                                                                          Posted 14-7-15


John Richardson

Bob Carter lose to Gloster Knights

The National Club Championships took place at Daventry IBC where the twelve teams who entered played in four groups of three. Bob Carter were drawn in Group 3 that included 2013 winners Kingscliffe of Somerset. Bob Carter, winners in 2011, fielded a strong line-up and made it through to the final. Gloster Knights were their opponents, they had progressed through Group 2 in which Hazelbury Brian finished second and Norfolk’s Halvergate finished third. Unfortunately Bob Carter could not regain the trophy going down 9-0 on points to their opponents. The Bob Carter team comprised of David Lamb, John Turner, Melvin Woods, Nigel Willard, Jamie Forster, George Clarke & Jason Woods.

                                                                                                                        Posted 14-7-15


Many questions on Treasurer’s Report at AGM

Daventry IBC was the venue for this year’s ESMBA Annual General Meeting where questions concerning the finances of the Association came under close scrutiny. A new Treasurer, Cheshire’s Barbara Mills, has been in place since last year’s AGM and nobody will have envied her job of putting a new system in place. It was interesting to note that former Chairman Chris Hopkins of Northants, who had come into conflict over the last few months with the Committee that he had chaired for years, was not in attendance. Neither was his Northants colleague Brian Nelson who had become deeply embroiled in the controversy and had e-mailed counties calling for an EGM. The SMPT, who have had their own difficulties with the ESMBA, were represented with Craig Burgess and Simon Pridham who founded the organisation. The SMPT has mushroomed since its inception providing popular short mat bowls events across Europe but the ESMBA’s attempts to licence their events, and avoid clashes with the ESMBA diary, has not helped the relationship between the two bodies.  But first of all the minutes, and matters arising, from 2014 had to be agreed. This gave Roger Green of North Yorks the opportunity to point out that in the new rulebook a paragraph, Foot Faulting 9 (c), had been left in that should have been deleted. This was accepted by the meeting and next time a reprint is needed this should be removed. In his Chairman’s Report Barry Hedges of Essex said that one year on from when he was elected the progress initially anticipated had not been made. He said that this was not through the lack of motivation on the part of the Management Committee but because of delays caused by others intent on being disruptive and causing trouble, for what is fundamentally personal differences with those who are trying to take the Association forward. Following the Chairman’s Report Hedges spoke of the legal issue involving Chris Hopkins and the ESMBA. He said that the mediation had been resolved but that the joint statement from Chris Hopkins and the ESMBA that was expected to follow had not been issued. He said that Chris Hopkins had disagreed with some of the wording and no mutual agreement on the wording had been made. Barry Hedges also said that the business is now behind us.

In her report the Treasurer Barbara Mills said that her role had been a difficult one after taking over from John Jackson as she had tried to bring the ESMBA accounts into the 21st Century using a computerised system. Excess expenditure over income was £19,302 as compared to excess income over expenditure last year of £2,837. In her report she said that the loss had mainly come about due to several one off items of expenditure. Following the report the Treasurer was asked an array of questions regarding items in the accounts. Norfolk raised the question of why the ESMBA website had cost £1,537 in 2015 and compared this to the £145 that the Norfolk website had cost. Chris Willies of West Mids also expressed his surprise at the cost of the ESMBA website as the West Mids site also cost a lot less. One reason for the high cost appears to be that the ESMBA have entered into a Package of Service agreement to sort out any problems they have with the site, Chris Willies pointed out that he gets this kind of service free for the West Mids site. Keith Hawkins said that the costs also included setting up the new dedicated e-mail addresses for each county that the ESMBA now send out minutes etc to. Another question raised was the cost of the National Club Championships which showed an income of just £250 and expenditure of £2,158. Barry Hedges confirmed that this competition does lose money. It was queried why so few clubs entered this competition and what could be done to raise the entry numbers but it remains a fact that nearly £2,000 of money is lost on an event that attracts only a tiny proportion of short mat bowls clubs. Another item raised by a delegate was the expenditure by the ESMBA of £5,872 on hosting the new European Championships. Peter Winter of West Sussex raised a question about Committee mileage expenses. In 2014 the sum claimed by ESMBA Committee members was £2,658, this went up to £7,122 in 2015. Roger Green of North Yorks then raised a question about the I.C.C entry fees, he said that the figure given appears short of what the figure should be when you look at the entry numbers. The questions raised about the ESMBA Treasurer’s Report took up an enormous amount of time but the losses involved were such that it made this inevitable. Barbara Mills again said that next years figures will provide a clearer view of the Association’s finances.

In his Administration Report by Keith Hawkins said that he believes that the ESMBA took the right step in appointing an Administration Officer. He said that by bringing all the records, for membership and insurance, under one umbrella the ESMBA can for the first time compile comprehensive data enabling them to identify where improvements can be made. On insurance he said that the scheme is “so encompassing that it provides full cover to our members so there is no requirement to boost it with supplementary cover from other sources.” This was a statement that the Norfolk delegate questioned due to the on-going discussions between the NCSMBA and the Administration Officer. Derbyshire, West Sussex & North Yorks delegates also raised questions on this issue and the outcome was that Keith Hawkins would have further discussions with Sutton Winson regarding the possibility of adding personal injury cover to the insurance and what the cost would be. 

Using Church Gresley IBC as a venue was again questioned and Keith said that some I.C.C knock-out games would take place at Daventry for the coming season. There was much discussion on bringing the National Championships further south again, as well as some delegates favouring a hard floor venue like Kettering Leisure Centre. Barry Hedges pointed out the huge cost of hiring such a venue and pointed out that Indoor Bowls Clubs are much cheaper. Chris Willies of West Mids criticized Church Gresley IBC as a National venue. Roger Green of North Yorks said that as the Nationals had lost £2,000 would the Committee look at raising National entry fees. One delegate even suggested that on top of the entry fee for Nationals the qualifiers should pay a green fee for Finals Days.

This brought us to the Proposals stage of the meeting which can take up a lot of time. Thankfully this time it didn’t as the ESMBA Constitutional proposals were voted through with just two abstentions. The West Sussex Constitutional proposals were next with the Norfolk amendments to those being voted on first. The Norfolk amendments were passed with all in favour except for one abstention. The West Sussex proposal, with the Norfolk amendments in place, were then voted upon and sailed through. The changes bring greater clarity to the Constitution in setting out a strict timetable on matters relating to the AGM.

The final proposal was the application for County status from Greater Manchester. This of course follows on from unsuccessful applications a few years ago under the name Stockport Metro, both of which failed. Veterans of those AGMs were fully aware that we would now face a long debate over just what constitutes a county. There was no way around this as delegates from various counties offered their views on Greater Manchester and whether it was a proper county. Lancashire had e-mailed their opposition to Greater Manchester’s application for County status. Their view was that Greater Manchester only exists as a ceremonial county and that recognising them would have an adverse effect on other counties. It is of course a fact that registered short mat bowlers playing the sport in the Greater Manchester area are members of present counties such as Lancashire so in recognising Greater Manchester the surrounding counties could all see membership drop. Listening to the views offered up by delegates and committee members it became clear that Lancashire’s failure to send a delegate to the meeting severely weakened their argument as well as their failure to compete in the I.C.C. Under the Constitution, with 47 voting delegates and committee members present, Greater Manchester’s application needed to have 32 votes in support if it was to be successful. When the vote was taken it was obviously going to be a close thing but to Greater Manchester’s relief they attracted 34 votes in favour, with 5 against and 8 abstentions, so that Greater Manchester are now a recognised County of the Association. The next item on the agenda was the appointment of auditors. Murray Smith LLP Chartered Acconntants of Northwich were again appointed.

This was followed by the election of Officers. With only one person standing for each of seven positions the meeting was asked if they would be happy to vote en bloc but Roger Green of North Yorks asked for a separate vote on the Umpires Director post which the Chairman agreed to do. The following posts were then elected en bloc. President – George Clarke (Norfolk), Chairman – Barry Hedges (Essex), Treasurer – Barbara Mills (Cheshire), Committee Secretary – Carol Hawkins, Competition Organiser – Brandon Whittaker (Cheshire), Committee Member – Roy Duke (Hertfordshire). The position of Umpires Director was then voted on with the only nomination Martin Davies of Oxfordshire. He was elected with 8 abstentions. Keith Hawkins was then elected as Administration Officer with one abstention. This left the post of Coaching Director. The nomination from the floor was for David Millington-Jones of Herefordshire, he was elected with four abstentions. Two more Committee Member positions were still to be filled and three members expressed interest, Chris Willies of West Mids, Becky Cox of Herefordshire and Karl Hudson of Somerset. Chris Willies spoke at length but said he would offer himself for a committee post only on his own terms. He spoke of what he would like to help the ESMBA take forward including the web site. His name did not go forward to the vote which was a great pity as he appeared to be someone that could really bring something to the table. Becky Cox & Karl Hudson were then elected to fill the two remaining committee positions.

Following the closure of the AGM the Open Forum then took place. After the Chairman opened the meeting Countdown Discounts cards was first on the agenda. It was announced that the ESMBA will discontinue the scheme in September. It has proved to be a costly venture that did not prove popular with members. The Chairman then spoke on Development. The ESMBA will be at the 50+ Show at Olympia, the cost will be half what it was the last time the ESMBA were there. He said that small sub-committees would be set up for the Worlds and the British Isles etc. It was also announced that the ESMBA will be going live with a new Skype number shortly. Plans of closer links between the England Squad, the England Under 21s and the England Ladies team were announced. The ESMBA see these teams as feeder teams into the main England Squad. Hedges also spoke of two new pilot competitions, a Fours and a Pairs, where members of any county can join together to play with the winners qualifying to represent England in the World Championships. He spoke of using both Church Gresley IBC and Daventry IBC as regular venues with the ESMBA storing sixteen mats at each venue. He said that the ESMBA are at an early stage of talking about sharing a venue with office space etc available for the ESMBA but spoke of the legal implications involved. They would possibly have to form a limited company to do this. He spoke of short mat bowls being a pyramid structure with England/Elite players at the top, County players in the middle and the grassroot/club players at the bottom and asked what can we do for the grassroot bowlers as that’s what most of the membership is. There was also talk of setting up a dropbox for counties to access information from on PDF files. There was also a suggestion of younger umpires being introduced, perhaps to umpire England Under 21 games. Cornwall complained they have a lot of umpires that are not being used enough, The Chairman explained that expenses were high for bringing umpires in from Cornwall. There was also much discussion on Umpires wearing burgundy shirts with an ESMBA logo on instead of blazers.

The I.C.C was discussed, with much criticism of the new three team groups with more than one county saying it affected their revenue. The question was asked as to why the system had been implemented prior to feedback being received from County Associations. Peter Winter said the new format was not welcomed in West Sussex. Norfolk also made it plain they were against it. It was stated that the ESMBA Committee would shortly be discussing the I.C.C and the counties views were wanted. Several leading players again suggested that a competition for the more serious bowlers was set up on a regional basis as a sort of in between England Squad and I.C.C. Barry Hedges liked Craig Burgess’s idea of regional competitions. It was questioned where the dates could be found for this. Eventually the discussion got back to the I.C.C and it became obvious that most county delegates wanted the format to return to groups of 4 or 5 teams. Other ideas that could be taken forward are 2 up 2 down roll ups for all group games, no roll-ups for knock-out games at neutral venues, a 10am start time or a mutually agreed start time between 10am and 11am with 10.30am start if teams failed to agree. The discussion on the I.C.C then came to a halt so we will wait for what comes out of the ESMBA following their discussions. We then moved on to the item requested by East Sussex on the number of ends for I.C.C Triples & Fours games. Delegates favoured an increase in the number of ends for these two disciplines.

The next item was to discuss the wearing of black trousers. More than one delegates was of the opinion that as the matter had been voted upon at the five yearly RRM last season it could not be voted upon again until the next RRM. This was supported by Peter Winter of West Sussex who also said the Constitution must be adhered to. Some delegates loudly disagreed with this and a newly elected ESMBA Committee member, now sitting with the ESMBA Committee, also urged the Chairman to allow a vote on the issue and ignore the Constitution. The Chairman though chose to make the correct decision that any rule change could only be voted upon at an RRM. It was pointed out though that under the current rules the ESMBA could allow a “local rule” to be used to allow teams with black trousers to compete in the National Club Championships.

The Information Pack re-issue was then discussed with Keith Hawkins saying that it will be put in PDF form on the website to print off.

The final discussion was on the question of ESMBA Licences. The SMPT raised the matter asking why they were the only ones who were being charged for a licence and why TLH, among others, had not had to obtain licences. This was denied but the SMPT spokesman pointed out that in the Treasurers Report under Competition Licences only one sum of £75 appeared, the sum they had paid for a licence in 2014. Simon Pridham of the SMPT also said that the licence should allow the SMPT to run as many events in a year as they want but the ESMBA were not giving their members the opportunity of playing in certain events which clashed with a couple of I.C.C games, even if those players were not playing that weekend. This generated much discussion on this issue. One view expressed to the Chair was that the licence was not fit for purpose. The Chairman said that they would discuss the situation regarding licences at Committee level. The meeting then finally came to an end and delegates hit the road to travel back to their home counties.

                                                                                                                              Posted 13-7-15


                                             Summer League latest
In Division One of the Summer League Wymondham continued their pursuit of Bob Carter with a 6-2 away win at Kirby Bedon where Roger Steele, Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye won their games by 17-5 & 16-11 while Mary Fisher, Chris Mann & Jon Sparham won their opening game by 12-7. Carol Aggas, John Aggas & Phil Watson collected Kirby’s only win beating Mary Fisher, Chris Mann & Jon Sparham 15-8 after the break. There was plenty of action in Division Two where Horsford Heroes continued their good form beating East Harling 6-2 with Peter Fox skipping his triple to wins of 20-6 & 30-8. Thorpe Marriott “A” are also on a good run. They won 6-2 at Forncett with Jenny Walker, Peter Walker & Ted Redwood winning twice. At home to First Bus another six points were secured by Thorpe Marriott with Kath Frost, Tony Turner & Marjorie Hall winning a game apiece. Despite a large shot difference Marriott had to be content with a 4-4 draw at home to Watton Yellow. In the first half Tony Turner’s triple won 28-5 and Marjorie Hall’s triple won 22-10. Watton secured a draw though with Roger Braham winning 18-13 and Daphne Braham winning 13-12 in the second half. Forncett beat East Harling 8-0 with Peter Lock’s triple storming to a 36-3 win in their first game. 
                                                                                                                                                         Posted 10-7-15


Super day at Hingham as Friends of Essex visit

Norfolk Over 60’s entertained Friends of Essex at Hingham with eighty players enjoying a great day of bowls with lunch prepared and provided by Norfolk Over 60s members. Teresa Goldsmith welcomed Tony Hayes and his Essex team to the venue while Tony’s team presented all the Norfolk players with a Friends of Essex badge and a pen. The match was played over six sessions with each team comprising of eight triples and eight pairs playing on eight mats. The first session of triples saw Norfolk edge ahead 9-7 on points with Alice Payne, Malcolm Reynolds & Geoff Payne starting with a 13-6 win. Colin Harris, Malcolm Southgate & Tony Oram provided Norfolk’s biggest win of the first session winning 12-4. Other Norfolk wins were delivered by Morris Taylor, Billie Barker & Graham Mobbs and Thelma Oliver, David Quadling & Gerald Chilvers while Gill Coleman, Mick Harris & Ray Lamb drew 11-11.

On came the pairs for the second session which saw Friends of Essex win 9-7 on points to level the match at 16 points apiece. Margaret Reynolds & Margaret Hunter won their opening game 12-8 and theirs was to be a formidable pairing all day for Norfolk. Other pair’s wins were provided by Jean & Melvin Woods who won 13-11 and Di Quadling & John Hunter who won 13-7 while Trish Taylor & Terry Newby drew 11-11.  

Back out came the triples to give Norfolk a clear lead as they won five of the eight games played. Geoff Payne’s triple earned their second win of the day with an 11-10 score-line as did Graham Mobbs’ triple who won by an impressive 14-6. Two other Norfolk triples won their second game in a row with Gerald Chilvers’ triple winning 11-10 and Tony Oram’s triple again scoring heavily with a 14-6 result. Jill Watson, Sue Fox & Phil Watson this time delivered the session’s biggest win of 14-5 as Norfolk Over 60s moved 26-22 up on points.

The second session of pairs saw Norfolk increase their lead to 35-29. Margaret Reynolds & Margaret Hunter again notched up a great win by 17-9 while Di Quadling & John Hunter also won again, this time by 15-10. David Knights & Neil Davidson put their first points on the board winning 10-7 as did Chris Musk & Peter Fox who won 10-7. Trish Taylor & Terry Newby added another point in a 10-10 draw, their second draw of the day.

The final triples session finished with another narrow 9-7 points win for Norfolk to give them a 44-36 lead. Geoff Payne’s triple had to be content with a 9-9 draw this time but it still left them as Norfolk’s top triple of the day with five out of six points. Phil Watson’s triple won by a resounding 13-3 while Doug Oliver, John Jarvis & Tyrone Musk won by 13-4. Ray Lamb’s triple finished well winning by 9-4 and Carolina Lirocchi, Alison Rush & Joe Lirocchi collected a win with a 9-5 result.

In the day’s final session Norfolk’s pairs produced the home side’s best session of the day winning 12-4 on points leaving Norfolk Over 60s on 56 points, 486 shots, against Friends of Essex total of 40 points and 430 shots. Margaret Reynolds & Margaret Hunter reeled off their third win of the day by 9-7 leaving the two Margarets as the only Norfolk players to finish the match with maximum points. Other last session winners for Norfolk were Trish Taylor & Terry Newby by 15-9, David Knights & Neil Davidson by 12-7, Roger Steele & Mel Barker by 11-9, Eric & Jane Frary by 10-6 & Jean & Melvin Woods by 9-5.    

Hingham triple lift David Durrant Memorial Trophy

Hingham’s Will Townsend, Graham Tweed & Keith Thomas are this season’s winners of the annual David Durrant Memorial Trophy held at Thorpe Marriott. After beating Sprowston SSC in the semi-finals by 12-6 they met Elaine Oatway, Lesley Crowe & Bob Oatway of First Bus in the final. Bob Oatway’s triple had defeated Haddiscoe 10-7 in the semi-finals but found their opposition in excellent form as the Hingham triple raced to a well deserved 11-3 win. The raffle held in aid of the Quidenham Hospice raised £100.  

                                                                                                                                              Posted 7-7-15

Will Townsend, Graham Tweed & Keith Thomas

England Under 21’s Manager resigns

England Under 21’s Manager Brian Claessen has resigned with immediate effect. In a statement announcing Claessen’s decision the ESMBA revealed that they had asked him to reconsider but Claessen declined saying that it was time to move on. Steve Bailey of the West Mids SMBA has been appointed as Caretaker Manager for a period of twelve months. The position will then be re-advertised. Brian Claessen’s first match in charge of England Under 21’s was played against a Norfolk Over 60’s Select team under the management of Teresa Goldsmith in October 2013. The match, played in Lyng at the now sadly defunct Lakeside Indoor Bowls Club, saw Norfolk Over 60’s Select produce a 34-18 win.

                                                                                                                                               Posted 4-7-15

               Brian Claessen (far right) pictured in his first match as Manager with Teresa Goldsmith & George Clarke at Lakeside.

Wymondham deny Deaf Sport once again

Last season’s Summer Cup ended with Wymondham beating Deaf Sports in the final, and for both clubs their latest Summer Cup campaign began the same way as they met once again in the First Round at Deaf Sport’s venue. Just like the last time Deaf Sports fought hard to contain a Wymondham side bursting with talent but even home advantage could not disguise the gulf between the two sides. Mary Fisher, Jack Pye & Chris Mann opened for the visitors with a 15-7 win against Laura Hawksworth’s triple and in their second game, with Billie Barker subbing for Fisher, romped to a 22-7 win against Robin Amos. Roger Steele, Melvyn Barker & Jon Sparham wrapped it up for Wymondham beating Hawksworth 16-10 while Gillian Amos, Dennis Kemble & Robin Amos earned a consolation 15-9 win against Roger Steele, Debbie Sparham & Jon Sparham. In the next round Wymondham visit Forncett, Bob Carter visit Thorpe Marriott “B”, Halvergate entertain Hingham Yellow and Kirby Bedon are at home to First Bus. The Summer League Division One title race has turned out to be, as expected, a straight battle between defending champions Bob Carter & Wymondham. Hingham struggled to hold Wymondham despite having home advantage and eventually went down 8-0. Roger Steele, Debbie Sparham & Jon Sparham won by 20-8 & 16-5 while Mary Fisher, Andrew Jackson & Chris Mann won their games 12-8 & 16-12. Despite winning all their home games so far Wymondham continued their unfortunate habit of dropping two points in every one, not a good idea as Carter continue to grind out maximum 8-0 wins. Kirby Bedon were the fourth team in a row to lose 6-2 at Wymondham with Carol Aggas,  Joe Brown & John Aggas coming back from 5-1 down to beat Chris Mann’s triple 11-10. Other than that one damaging blow Wymondham were in the comfort zone as Roger Steele, Debbie Sparham & Jon Sparham beat John Aggas 18-7 and Gerald Chilvers 15-7 with Chris Mann’s triple adding a 25-7 win against Gerald Chilvers. Four nights later Wymondham completed a double over Kirby Bedon beating them 6-2 away from home. Bob Carter turned up the heat in the title race reeling off another 8-0 win, this time at the expense of visitors Hingham. Jean Woods, David Lamb & John Turner won by 35-8 & 15-13 while George Clarke, Jamie Forster & Jason Woods won by 21-11 & 18-6. Deaf Sports won 6-2 at Diss where Gillian Amos, C Mohammid & Robin Amos won their games by 13-11 & 14-13 with Laura Hawksworth’s triple adding a 17-10 win. The only Diss win of the night actually produced the biggest score as Morris Taylor, Trish Taylor & Terry Newby beat John Jeffery’s triple 27-6. In Division Two First Bus are going very well with a 6-2 away win at Windows keeping them in a good position. Bob Oatway’s triple won by 21-9 & 19-10 while Colin Coman added a 22-6 win. Windows performed better at Watton Yellow where they earned themselves a 4-4 draw. Mike Boswell skipped his Windows’ triple to wins of 17-6 & 20-6 but Daphne Braham & Roger Braham hot back with a win apiece. Two great results for Horsford Heroes kept them on course for promotion. Peter Fox was in fine form winning his games by 24-9 & 21-9 as Horsford beat Watton Yellow 8-0. Jane James added a 21-8 win and Chris Woodhouse won by 13-12. Four nights earlier Hortsford had won 7-1 at Harling with Peter Fox winning his games by 20-10 & 18-3.

AGM delegates vote to end County Cup

The Norfolk CSMBA Annual General Meeting was held at North Wymondham where the future of the Norfolk County Cup was finally decided. Last year’s AGM awarded the competition a year’s reprieve in an effort to encourage more teams to enter but, after entry numbers fell to just thirteen, delegates voted to end the competition once and for all. All existing Officers were re-elected to their posts except for the Competition Secretary and Assistant Competition Secretary who did not stand for re-election. Peter Smart had served as Competition Secretary for the last nine years and Bob Oatway as Assistant Competition Secretary for the last eight years. In his report the Chairman, Selwyn Goldsmith of Kirby Bedon SMBC, highlighted the valuable work carried out by both over that time. Peter Smart remains on the Management Committee as Umpires Officer while Bob Oatway remains as Vice-President. Chris Mann was elected as the new Competition Secretary and Jon Sparham as Assistant Competition Secretary, both are members of Wymondham SMBC. In the Press & Web Secretary’s Report details of a new on-line 10% off deal with Potters Bowls Shop were revealed, details of the offer for short mat bowlers had been published on the Norfolk CSMBA website a few days earlier. In his President’s Closing Speech, Brian Saunders of Wymondham SMBC, spoke of the very special contribution made by Bob Oatway over the years when he announced that Bob was to be the third recipient of the President’s Distinguished Service Award. The President then asked the Chairman to present the award to Bob before the meeting closed.

                                                                                                                                          Posted 4-7-15

Bure League champions Halvergate made home advantage count in the first leg of the new Challenge Cup Final as they beat Breckland champions Wymondham by 14-6 taking a healthy eight point lead into the second leg. The first session of singles matches saw Halvergate make the best start possible as David Lamb held off a fightback from Jack Pye to win 8-7 while Keith Cooke led by 9-0 after just four ends as he beat Chris Mann 10-6. In the fours Donna Lamb, Jackie Smith, Robbie Lamb and Robin Amos beat Pat Saunders, Billie Barker, Melvyn Barker and Debbie Sparham in a tight match 7-4. Wymondham's only win in the session came from Mary Fisher, Brian Saunders, Andy Jackson and Jon Sparham who beat Kevin Watson, David Knights, Steven Lamb and Morgan Warnes 9-3. The win was not enough to overturn the shots deficit which Halvergate took by two shots at 28-26 to give them an 8-2 halftime lead. The second session singles again went mostly Halvergate's way as David Lamb secured his second win of the night beating Chris Mann with a comfortable 14-9 win while Keith Cooke battled back from dropping a four on the first end to claim an 11-11 draw with Jack Pye. The second session of fours saw Jon Sparham in good form with his rink as they picked up another solid win by 9-3. More frustration was had for Debbie Sparham's rink as they again went down this time to Morgan Warnes' four by 6-8 but a great take out shot by Debbie Sparham to gain four shots on the last end was some consolation as they tied overall shots in the second session 35-35 to lose the second session by 6-4. Halvergate will be quietly confident they can do enough at Wymondham to at least force a tie breaker while Wymondham likewise will feel they still have every chance as they will hold home advantage in the second leg!


Jon Sparham kept Wymondham in the tie skipping his four to two big wins!

Here comes Summer!

The NCSMBA Summer League season has begun with the four teams finishing in the top four positions in Div One last year all in action against each other. Defending champions Bob Carter, who won the league without losing a match in 2014, opened their campaign away to last year’s runner-ups Wymondham. The home side had a good start winning both opening games but not without a fight. Mikey George, Jon Sparham & Chris Mann trailed 9-4 after eight ends against Carter’s Jamie Forster, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods but fought back to win 15-10 while Andrew Jackson, Jack Pye & Debbie Sparham beat Nigel Willard, David Lamb & John Turner 15-7. Mann’s triple added an 11-8 win against Turner’s triple after the break to secure victory but Melvin Woods’ triple picked up two points for Carter beating Debbie Sparham 16-10. Carter visited Kirby Bedon for their second match and despite only nine shots separating the teams Carter collected a valuable 7-1 away win. In an unchanged Carter side Melly Woods’ triple inflicted a 16-13 defeat on home triple Shirley Brown, Joe Brown & Gerald Chilvers while John Turner’s triple drew 13-13 against Carol Aggas, John Aggas & Phil Watson. Both second half games went Carter’s way with Melly Woods beating Phil Watson 17-13 and John Turner beating Joe Brown 13-11. Halvergate’s visit to Kirby Bedon ended with honours shared. In the first half Kirby’s Carol Aggas, John Aggas & Phil Watson beat Robbie Lamb’s triple 20-8 while Halvergate’s  Donna Lamb, Steven Lamb & Keith Cooke beat Joe Brown’s triple 16-12. Cooke’s triple added a 14-9 win against John Aggas after the break but Shirley Brown, Jimmy Dye & Joe Brown earned Kirby Bedon a draw by beating Robbie Lamb’s triple 15-12. In Division Two Watton Green had a busy start with three games in seven days. Their only win though was a 5-3 away win in their local derby against Watton Yellow. Norma Gower, Richard Adams & Pat Groombridge opened with a 22-7 win against Daphne Braham’s triple while Doreen Paffey, Dennis Gower & Don Paffey beat Roger Braham’s triple 15-6. The home side performed better after the break with Doreen Braham’s triple holding Don Paffey to a 14-14 draw while Roger Braham’s triple won 19-11 against Margaret Watts. Watton Yellow got revenge one week later in the return fixture by beating Watton Green 6-2 with Roger Braham’s triple winning twice by 15-10 against Margaret Watts and by 13-11 against Don Paffey. Daphne Braham’s triple added a 23-7 win against Don Paffey but lost 15-10 to Des McQuoid, Rosemary McQuoid & Margaret Watts. Thorpe Marriott “A” began their season by beating Watton Green 6-2. Marriott’s Jenny Walker, Mandy Marshall & Marjorie Hall beat Don Paffey 19-6 and with Sylvia Turner subbing for Marjorie Hall added an 18-5 win against Pat Groombridge’s triple. Sheila Redwood, Ted Redwood & Tony Turner beat Don Paffey’s triple 18-9 while Watton’s only win came courtesy of Norma Gower, Richard Adams & Pat Groombridge who beat Ted Redwood’s triple 19-8. The Norfolk Summer Cup began with First Bus winning 8-0 at home to Harling. It proved to be a heavy win for First Bus as Murial Dugdale, Linda Tooes & Bob Oatway beat Terry Murphy’s triple 23-4 and Elaine Oatway, Lesley Crowe & Colin Coman beat Robert Sands’ triple 14-12 in the first half. After the break Julia Cummins, Trevor Shelley & Bob Oatway won 24-12 against Brian Knappett’s triple and Colin Coman’s unchanged triple beat Stephen Easter 31-3.

                                                                                                                             Posted 16-5-15     


Northern stars shine brightly at Potters Resort

The fourth annual Potter’s East Coast Over 50s Week saw Northern bowlers enjoy a fabulous week winning both the East Coast Triples Cup and the East Coast Pairs. Paula McCallum of Murton Glebe, Durham & the irrepressible North Yorkshire star Arthur Jackson of Easingwold SMBC achieved a fantastic double picking up Potter’s Holiday vouchers worth up to £200 each. Bowlers arrived on site on Bank Holiday Monday and enjoyed a fabulous five course meal in the Garden Restaurant before heading into the Atlas Theatre to experience the popular touring show “A Night of Dirty Dancing.” East Coast Triples Cup action began in earnest on Tuesday morning in the International Arena with the biggest entry to date playing in two groups on a round robin basis scheduled to last three days. To qualify for the semi-finals stage on Thursday afternoon a top two place was required in each group and triples were focused on making a good start on the first day. Defending champions Gill Kent, Gerry Russell & Tony Kent of Sutton St Edmund in Cambridgeshire made a great start winning all their four games on the opening day in Blue Group but Sue Fox of Horsford Heroes with Margaret & Derek Barley of Carlton Colville in Suffolk finished just one point behind them after three wins and a draw. Two other triples in their group remained unbeaten with two wins and two draws apiece. They were Margaret & John Poynter of Sprowston playing with David Knights of Horsford BC and Elaine & Bob Oatway of First Bus who, due to Geraldine Potter being unable to play for medical reasons, had reserves David Chadwick of Norfolk Over 60s & Teresa Goldsmith of Kirby Bedon sharing lead duties as reserves. By the close of play on Wednesday Tony Kent’s triple and Derek Barley’s triple were level on thirteen points after the Camb’s triple had lost their opening game against Hingham’s Graham Tweed and drawn with Brian Holman’s triple. With just one group session left to play on Thursday Tony Kent’s triple led the group one point ahead of Derek Barley and with no other triple in contention they were both assured of a semi-final place. By a twist of fate they were due to play each other so the game became a decider to see who won the group and who came second. Tony Kent’s win of 8-4 decided that issue. In the Red Group Paula McCallum of Durham, Arthur Jackson of North Yorks and Mac McCallum of Durham were expected to feature strongly but they made a poor start going down 14-7 against Alice & Geoff Payne of Saxlingham playing with Thorpe Marriott’s John Jarvis at number two. Morris Taylor, Trish Taylor & Terry Newby of Carleton Rode made a flying start winning all their games on Tuesday to lead the group while Val Vardy of Norfolk Over 60s, Diane Boswell of Windows & Mike Boswell of Windows were one point behind as were Gwen Brown, Richard Brown & Colin Hadler from Kent. Terry Newby’s triple still held the lead after two days play with thirteen points but Mike Boswell’s triple and Mac McCallum’s triple were both just one point behind. With just one group session to play on Thursday four triples were still in contention for the top two places in Red Group and remarkably all four triples were on mats 13 & 14. Mike Boswell’s triple led the group on 16 points and faced third placed Mac McCallum who was two points behind him. The Northern triple came out on top winning 9-4 to finish level with Boswell on points but with a better shot difference. The result of the game between Terry Newby’s second placed triple and Colin Hadler’s fourth placed triple would decide Boswell’s fate as a win for Newby would see the Carleton Rode triple top the group with McCallum second but it did not work out that way as Newby’s triple were beaten 15-5 to see them fall from second to third in the group leaving McCallum and Boswell in the semi-finals. Tony Kent’s triple faced Mike Boswell in the semi-finals and they were level at 2-2 after three ends. The fourth end though proved to be a disaster for the Norfolk triple as they conceded six shots to trail 8-2. They fought back to 8-6 after six ends but Tony Kent’s triple went on to win 13-6 with the game conceded with an end to play. In the other semi-final McCallum’s triple were 8-1 up after three ends against Derek Barley’s triple and went on to win 11-3 with the last end left unplayed. The East Coast Triples Cup Final was played on Friday morning. The first end was quite loose as the players took time to get to grips with a repositioned mat one but Arthur Jackson found a good line and length with his last bowl. Tony Kent then grazed the jack with his first wood and was unlucky to see it run through. Mac McCallum drew in a good wood but moved the jack and it remained just one shot to his triple after Tony Kent went wide with his last wood of the end. A tentative second end saw the Cambs triple holding one shot when it was the skips turn to play. Tony Kent made it two with his first bowl but they had to settle for just one after Mac’s final wood had taken one shot out. Both leads and number twos struggled on the third end and the jack remained in the open when the skips went up to the delivery end. The last bowl by Mac McCallum was a significant one as he played a perfect forehand shot to give his triple a 2-1 lead. A great battle between Gerry Russell & Arthur Jackson on the fourth end left the Cambs triple holding two shots. Tony Kent drew in a third to put McCallum under pressure and to his dismay he drew short with his last bowl and Tony Kent drew in a superb fourth wood to move 5-2 up. A great wood by Paula McCallum put Gerry Russell in trouble but he responded with a great backhand to take shot. He was less pleased with his next bowl that went into the ditch but Jackson also lost his wood off the side of the mat. Solid bowling by Mac McCallum though earned his triple three shots and levelled the game 5-5. Two more good woods by Paula McCallum, one on the jack and one behind, was added to by Arthur Jackson with a third before Gerry Russell drew in second wood. A brilliant backhand by Tony Kent drew applause but Mac McCallum responded immediately with a super bowl to ultimately earn two shots and a 7-5 lead after six ends. Superb bowling by both Paula McCallum and Gill Kent on the seventh end left Kent’s triple holding shot but that only lasted until Arthur Jackson’s first bowl which finished to the side of the jack. Russell’s last wood took shot until Mac’s first bowl sat on the jack. Tony Kent attacked but was too tight and McCallum added a second but pushed the jack in the open near the ditch. Kent’s final wood was an attacking forehand which sent the holding wood into the ditch and the umpire was called for a measure. The result of the measure gave Mac’s triple one shot and anj 8-5 lead to take into the last scheduled end. Paula McCallum played a lovely first wood onto the jack and her second one behind while Gill Kent lost her first bowl and went long with her second. Arthur Jackson added a third and then a fourth after Gerry Russell went long with his first bowl and off the mat with his second. Mac McCallum added a fifth with his first bowl and Tony Kent could not get past the wall of opposition bowls with his first wood. The Durham skip drew in again forcing Tony Kent to fire but the situation was now hopeless and Mac McCallum’s triple had won the final 12-5 against the defending champions. The third placed play-off was won by Sue Fox, Margaret Barley & Derek Barley who beat Val Vardy, Diane Boswell & Mike Boswell 12-7.   

The East Coast Pairs was played over just two nights and provided fast and furious action. In the semi-finals Red Group winners Terry Thorpe of Coronation in Norfolk and Paul Whitcombe of Great Ouseburn, North Yorks lost a close game by just 7-5 against Green Group winners Paula McCallum of Durham & Arthur Jackson of North Yorks. In the other semi-final Black Group winners John Jarvis of Thorpe Marriott and Mike Boswell of Windows beat Blue Group winners David Knights of Horsford BC & John Poynter ofSprowston by 9-5. In the final the game opened with Paula McCallum drawing to the left of the jack and John Jarvis to the right but John Jarvis got the better of the first exchange between the leads with a great last wood. Arthur Jackson’s first bowl left the North Yorks skip holding two shots but Mike Boswell reduced the damage to just one. On the second end John Jarvis again won the battle of the leads leaving his second bowl sitting six inches behind the jack and Boswell drew a second with his last wood to take a 2-1 lead. A superb second bowl by Jarvis was bettered by a cracking wood played by Paula McCallum that took the jack back for two shots. After Jackson drew in a third wood Mike Boswell used weight to cut the damage to just one shot and the game was level at 2-2. Paula McCallum drew a nice wood close to the jack to open the fourth end but an inch perfect draw by John Jarvis took shot. Arthur Jackson promptly took it out with his first wood to hold two which quickly became just one after Mike Boswell attacked. Jackson drew in another for two which is how the end finished after Boswell attacked and missed and Paula McCallum & Arthur Jackson led 4-2. The great battle between the leads continued unabated on the fifth end with Jarvis ditching the jack after Paula McCallum had played two excellent woods. The skips failed to change the situation and Jarvis & Boswell reduced the deficit to 4-3. A super forehand draw by Paula McCallum took shot on the seventh and Jackson drew in a second. Boswell’s last attacking bowl then took shot but Arthur Jackson produced a superb winner to take the jack back for three shots and a 7-3 lead. Paula McCallum kept the heat on with two more nice woods to begin the penultimate end. Boswell was unlucky with his final attacking wood and was unable to stop his opponents taking three shots to lead 10-3 and win the East Coast Pairs. The East Coast Pairs third place play-off was won by David Knights & John Poynter who beat Terry Thorpe & Paul Whitcombe 11-5.

On Friday morning Popular Potters Resort entertainer Richard Beare conducted the Presentation Ceremony with Event Organiser Teresa Goldsmith. Richard Beare presented Potter’s Holiday vouchers to the first four places in both events. On behalf of the bowlers Richard Beare also presented gifts to both Teresa & Selwyn Goldsmith in thanks for their work in running the event which included a Hensalite bowlers jacket to Teresa. Next Year’s Potters East Coast Over 50s Triples & Pairs Week will commence on 2-5-16 and details, fliers & entry forms etc can be obtained by contacting Teresa on 01603-403628.

                                                                                                                             Posted 8-5-15

                                 East Coast Triples Cup winners Arthur Jackson, Paula McCallum & Mac McCallum with Richard Beare

                                                           Runners-up Gerry Russell, Gill Kent & Tony Kent with Richard Beare

                                                                              Third placed Margaret Barley, Sue Fox & Derek Barley

                                        Fourth placed Mike Boswell, Val Vardy & Di Boswell with Potters entertainer Richard Beare

                                                                       East Coast Pairs winners Arthur Jackson & Paula McCallum

                                                                                      Runners-up John Jarvis & Mike Boswell

                                         Third placed David Knights & John Poynter                               

                                                                                   Fourth placed Paul Whitcombe & Terry Thorpe


Potters entertainer Richard Beare 


Carter chase cup glory

Summer League Division Two side Windows entertained Division One giants Bob Carter in the Summer Cup but any hopes they had of a giant killing quickly evaporated as the league leaders powered their way into the next round with ease. Fielding one current and four former England internationals in their six man team Carter took the game by the scruff of its neck and reeled off four straight wins to send out a clear signal that they want the cup back that is currently held by Wymondham.  George Clarke, Jason Woods & Melvyn Woods won their games by 26-5 & 22-9 while Nigel Willard, David Lamb & John Turner won by 20-6 & 13-12. In the other cup match played this week Division One side Thorpe Marriott “B” won by five shots after their Division Two visitors Watton Yellow held them to a 4-4 draw on points. Richard Perkins’ triple earned victory for Thorpe Marriott with a 16-8 win against Daphne Braham’s triple while the other three games were all close on shots. In Division One title contenders Wymondham won 6-2 at home to Thorpe Marriott “B” but will regard this as two points dropped. Wymondham’s Mary Fisher, Chris Mann & Jon Sparham beat Simon Warnes’ triple 16-5 and Morgan Warnes’ triple 17-5 while Jack Pye’s triple added a 23-11 win. The visitors though picked up two points courtesy of a 14-12 win for David Knights, John Jarvis & Simon Warnes against Jack Pye to take the gloss off Wymondham’s win. In a busy period for Thorpe Marriott “B” visits to both Diss & Halvergate proved productive as they collected their first two league wins of the season. Richard Perkins skipped his Marriott triple to a 26-5 win and a 14-14 draw at Diss where they won 5-3. At Halvergate things went even better for Marriott as they picked up a 6-2 away win. Margaret McPherson, Bob McPherson & Simon Warnes beat Robbie Lamb’s triple 21-5 and with John Jarvis & David Knights replacing the McPherson’s in Simon Warnes’ second half triple they beat England’s Keith Cooke 13-6. Morgan Warnes scored Marriott’s other win beating Robbie Lamb 21-13. Division Two looks like producing a tight promotion race this year with no team yet pulling away from the pack. First Bus will be pleased with their 6-2 home win against Horsford Heroes in which Colin Coman’s triple won their games by 20-9 & 18-14 and Bob Oatway added an 18-8 win. First Bus will be less pleased with a 6-2 defeat at Watton where Don Paffey’s triple were on form winning their games by 19-9 & 18-9. Rosemary McQuoid, Dennis Gower & Don Paffey also did the business away to Harling where a win of 19-9 and a 10-10 draw put Watton Green on course for a 5-3 win in a match where Watton’s Pat Groombridge scored the night’s biggest win of 26-13. One shot wins for Terry Murphy’s triple and Stephen Easter’s triple earned Harling a 4-4 home draw against Forncett despite heavy defeats in the other two games to Martin & Rebecca Humpreys’ triples. 

                                                                                          Posted 30-6-15


Potters Bowls Shop’s "10% Off Deal" through the NCSMBA

The Norfolk SMBA website has great pleasure in giving our many readers the opportunity of a fantastic 10% discount on your first on-line order from the new Potters Bowls Shop at the famous Potters Leisure Resort providing you are spending at least £50. All you have to do to take advantage of this attractive deal is to click on the link below and when you make your order quote the special code SHORT10. Champion bowler Greg Harlow has ensured that Potters Bowls Shop has a great range of bowls and bowling accessories to satisfy your every need. If you are thinking of treating yourself to that new set of bowls in one of the great new colours now is the time to do it and save yourself some serious money courtesy of the Norfolk Short Mat Bowls Association website.                         


Potters Short Mat Bowls Breaks at great prices

Don’t forget that Potters Leisure Resort, famous for hosting the televised World Bowls every year, is the venue of choice to enjoy your short mat bowls break in 5 Star surroundings. Norfolk SMBA’s Teresa & Selwyn Goldsmith have for many years helped bowlers enjoy their short mat bowling breaks in the famous International Arena and can currently offer you the choice of a Monday to Friday break every May and a two or three night weekend break in September at a tremendous price courtesy of Potters Leisure Resort. There is nothing to compare to Potters where, as well as bowling in the International Arena, you will enjoy fabulous entertainment in the Atlas Theatre every evening as well as breakfast, lunch, dinner and a midnight feast on top of the other attractions that Potters has to offer. For the very best deals on these breaks just click on the links below. 

                       POTTERS CUP WEEKEND SEPT 2015 click on 

                                               Potters Cup 

           POTTERS EAST COAST OVER 50s WEEK MAY 2016 click on

                                          Potters May Break

Happy bowlers at Potters Resort

Determined Wymondham lose 7-1 at Carter

Despite a determined effort from Wymondham in their top of the table Division One clash at Bob Carter it was the Drayton side who emerged with a 7-1 home win. Carter’s Jamie Forster, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods looked on course for a win against Mikey George, Chris Mann & Jon Sparham when they took five shots on the second end but Wymondham pegged back to trail by just one shot after five ends. Again Carter pulled ahead by 14-6 after seven ends but with Chris Mann switching to skip the visitors made another great comeback to lead 16-15 with one end remaining. Melvin Woods though produced a great drawing wood to level the game at 16-16. The other first half game was also incredibly tight with Wymondham’s Roger Steele, Debbie Sparham & Jack Pye starting well to lead Jean Woods, David Lamb & John Turner 8-4 after seven ends. The Carter triple hit back to lead 10-8 after nine ends but again fell behind as Pye’s triple carved out a 14-11 lead with two ends remaining. The penultimate end though proved costly for Wymondham as Carter took five shots to take a 16-14 lead into the final end. A single on the last end was not much of a consolation for Pye’s triple as they lost a game by 16-15 in which they had won nine of the fifteen ends. After the break substitute Nigel Willard was called into action for John Turner’s triple who faced Chris Mann’s triple. Turner’s triple enjoyed a superb start and after six ends led the Chris Mann by 11-1 before the visitors fought their way back into the game. With one end remaining Wymondham’s great comeback had levelled the game at 13-13 and the visitor’s hopes were high. When Jon Sparham, now skipping, had played his final bowl they held shot but John Turner took the shot wood out with his final bowl for a 14-13 win to finish a fantastic game. The remaining game saw Jamie Forster, J Woods & Melvin Woods produce a 16-7 win against Jack Pye’s triple in a game that was close up to the twelfth with Carter leading by just two shots. Seven shots for Carter over the last three ends made the win look more convincing that it actually was. Wymondham will be pleased that they pushed Carter all the way on the fast Drayton mats but will be bitterly disappointed to have taken just one point from the game. Bob Carter on the other hand will be delighted to have won this vital match by 7-1 despite the closeness of three games and move eleven points clear of second placed Wymondham who have Kirby Bedon close behind in third place. Halvergate are fourth after a 6-2 home win against Diss in which Keith Cooke’s triple beat Terry Newby 14-12 and Bill Francis by 31-4. Terry Newby’s triple scored the visitors only win beating Robbie Lamb 19-16. Two nights later Diss were back in action at home to Hingham and this time tasted victory with a 5-3 win as Morris Taylor, Trish Taylor & Terry Newby drew 13-13 with Keith Thomas and then beat Gordon Wilcox 14-11. The previous night Hingham’s trip to Deaf Sports saw them hold the home side to a 4-4 draw where Wilcox & Thomas won a game apiece while Laura Hawksworth skipped her triple to wins of 32-6 & 16-8. In Division Two leaders Horsford Heroes were held to a 4-4 draw on their own mats by Windows. Ex Cromer & Coltishall player Jane James won 15-12 for Horsford and Chris Woodhouse added a 16-9 win but Mike Boswell & Keith Halford won a game apiece for Windows to share the points. First Bus beat Watton Yellow 6-2 with Julia Cummins, Lesley Crowe & Colin Coman winning 14-12, and with Elaine Oatway subbing for Cummins, won their second game 16-5. Summer Cup action saw Hingham Yellow win 6-2 at Watton Green with B Lister, Jane Frary & Gordon Wilcox winning by 13-11 & 16-9.

                                                                                                                                                Posted 18-6-15  


Carter back on top

Bob Carter moved top of Division One of the Summer League after a pair of maximum 8-0 wins. At home to Deaf Sports Jean Woods, George Clarke & John Turner won by 23-7 & 12-9 while Melvin Woods’ triple won 13-10 & 17-5. The visit of Diss gave Carter another opportunity of displaying their formidable home form as Jamie Forster, Jason Woods & Melvin Woods won 19-5 & 20-9 while John Turner’s triple won 22-6 & 19-5 to leave Carter five points clear of second placed Wymondham. Kirby Bedon are in third place after winning 6-2 away to Diss. The home side enjoyed a great start as Morris Taylor, Trish Taylor & Terry Newby won 29-4 but Kirby hit back with Carol Aggas, Gerald Chilvers & John Aggas winning 16-14 & 16-15 while Joe Brown’s triple added a 17-14 win. Diss fared better at Thorpe Marriott “B” where Morris Taylor, Trish Taylor & Terry Newby won 24-8 against Simon Warnes and 24-7 against Keith Chapman. Graham Mobbs added a second half 19-15 win against Warnes to secure victory. Thorpe Marriott “B” had to settle for a 4-4 draw at home to Hingham where two wins for Simon Warnes’ triple earned Marriott’s points while Keith Thomas & Gordon Wicox skipped their Hingham triples to a win each. In the remaining Division One match Halvergate won 6-2 at home to Deaf Sports with Keith Baker, Ray Lamb & Steven Lamb winning 18-8 & 23-15. Horsford Heroes were busy in Division Two with four games and lead the pack. They won 8-0 at home to Watton Green with Peter Fox winning his games by 24-10 & 14-6 and Chris Woodhouse winning his by 19-11 & 18-12. Horsford travelled to both Windows & Thorpe Marriott “A” and secured valuable 4-4 draws in each with Jane James winning twice at Windows. Horford’s only defeat was at Forncett where they went down 6-2 as Peter Lock won by 17-11 & 11-10 for Forncett. Watton Yellow are second after winning 6-2 at Windows where Roger Braham won twice. Watton Yelloow were held to a 4-4 draw at home to First Bus though despite Daphne Braham’s triple winning 31-2 and 14-10. First Bus enjoyed two excellent home wins beating both Watton Green & Thorpe Marriott “A” 8-0 with Bob Oatway & Colin Coman’s triples in excellent form. Watton Green beat East Harling 8-0 but had to settle for a 4-4 draw at home to Windows. In the remaining match Thorpe Marriott “A” won 6-2 at home to Windows with Tony Turner’s triple winning 11-9 & 23-6.

                                                                                Posted 14-6-15

Wymondham double over Halvergate leaves them clear

A convincing league double against Halvergate has put Wymondham seven points clear at the top of the Summer League Division One table. After their excellent winter season Halvergate would have been hoping to take that same impressive form into the summer but will be disappointed to have been so outplayed at their own venue by a rampant Wymondham side. Roger Steele, Brian Saunders & Jack Pye opened for the visitors with a 17-9 win against England’s Keith Cooke while Mary Fisher, Chris Mann & Jon Sparham added an 18-10 win against Robbie Lamb to give Wymondham a 4-0 points lead at the interval. The second half saw Wymondham raise their game to an even higher level with Jon Sparham’s triple beating Keith Cooke 18-7 and Jack Pye’s triple beating Robbie Lamb 21-5 to earn a stunning 8-0 away win. Halvergate actually did better at Wymondham although they still went down 6-2 on points with Keith Cooke’s triple beating Debbie Sparham’s Wymondham triple by 19-13. Jon Sparham’s triple won both their games beating Keith Cooke 20-14 and Ray Lamb 17-14 while Debbie Sparham’s triple beat Ray Lamb 21-12. Kirby Bedon moved into second place in the table with a maximum 8-0 home win against newly promoted Deaf Sports. Jill Watson, John Aggas & Phil Watson opened with a 23-12 win against Robin Amos while Jimmy Dye, Gerald Chilvers & Joe Brown beat John Jeffery 13-9. Both sides made changes in the second half but the games went Kirby’s way again as Phil Watson’s triple beat John Jeffery 19-9 and Joe Brown’s triple beat Robin Amos 13-7. In Division Two Watton Green suffered their fourth defeat in five games. Visitors Horsford Heroes opened strongly with Nicky James, Mark Tuttle & Jane James beating Pat Groombridge’s triple 15-10 while Richard Hart, Jo Turner & Peter Fox beat Don Paffey’s triple 22-8. Two more wins followed after the break with Jane James beating Don Paffey 17-9 and Peter Fox beating Pat Groombridge 19-4. This 8-0 away win leaves Horsford sitting pretty in third place with games in hand over the top two and looking early season favourites for promotion. Forncett scored a 6-2 away win at Thorpe Marriott “A” where a 12-5 win for Trevor Pinchen, Ted Redwood & Tony Turner against Peter Lock secured the home sides only points. Tony Ottewell, Tim Weal & Linda Preece beat Marjorie Hall’s triple 18-14 and followed that up with a 13-8 win against Tony Turner to finish the evening unbeaten. Forncett’s other win was courtesy of Bryan Preece, Keith Humphreys & Martin Humphreys who beat Sylvia Turner 17-13.

                                                                                                                                                         Posted 31-5-15         

                                                  Roger Steele on form for Wymondham

New Norfolk Squad named

Following the recent Norfolk County Team Trials held in preparation for the 2015/16 season Norfolk Manager Selwyn Goldsmith has named his squad. Ollie Allen of Carleton Rode makes a welcome return to the squad following a period away from county short mat bowls action. Bob Carter’s Nigel Willard, formerly of Norman Centre & Kirby Bedon, also returns to the squad as does Morgan Warnes of Horsford BC. Diss player Graham Mobbs is named for the first time after impressing at the trials. No doubt with an eye to the future Goldsmith has also selected talented young Deaf Sports bowler Laura Hawksworth. Another addition to the squad is the always consistent Lesley Crowe of First Bus. The full 2015/16 Norfolk Squad can be found by clicking on

County Team

                                                                                  Posted 29-5-15     

                                                      Morgan Warnes returns to the County Squad

Kirby & Forncett into next round

Early season Summer Cup action saw Kirby Bedon & Forncett safely through into the second round. Home advantage did not help Horsford as they slipped to a 7-1 defeat against visitors Kirby Bedon where their triples of Carol Aggas, John Aggas & Phil Watson and Shirley Brown, Gerald Chilvers & Joe Brown were both unbeaten. It was a close match at Forncett where their home tie against Thorpe Marriott finished level at 4-4 on points but the home side progressed thanks to a narrow 51-48 shots advantage. Peter Lock’s Forncett triple opened with a 17-11 win against Sylvia Turner but Tony Turner’s Marriott triple replied with a 16-10 win against Linda Preece to leave the sides level on both points and shots at the interval. Tony Turner’s triple won again beating Peter Lock 17-8 but Martin Humphreys’ triple won the match for Forncett beating Sylvia Turner’s triple 16-4. In Division One newly promoted teams Hingham & Thorpe Marriott “B” met to begin their campaigns in the top flight. Home side Hingham made a winning start beating their visitors 6-2 with Mary Potter, Will Townsend & Gordon Wilcox winning their games by 18-7 against Richard Perkins & 12-8 against Morgan Warnes. Wendy Tweed, Graham Tweed & Keith Thomas added a 16-8 win against Perkins while Margaret McPherson, Bob McPherson & Keith Chapman collected Marriott’s two points with a 14-8 win against Keith Thomas. Division Two saw Windows win 6-2 at home to Watton Green. First half action saw Ken Dease, Maureen Dease & Mike Boswell beat Doreen Paffey, Dennis Gower & Don Paffey 17-9 but the visitors hit back with a 14-7 win for Norma Gower, Richard Adams & Pat Groombridge against Avril Walker’s triple. The home side won both second half games as Brenda Sizer, Diane Halford & Keith Halford beat Don Paffey’s triple 14-12 and Di Boswell, Mally Woodhouse & Mike Boswell beat Pat Groombridge’s triple 13-8. In the week’s other game Watton Yellow beat Horsford Heroes 6-2. Daphne Braham’s triple won twice beating Jane James 16-13 and Peter Fox 15-11 while Roger Braham added a 15-11 win against Jane James. Horsford’s only points came from a 14-12 win for Peter Fox’s triple against Roger Braham.

                                                                                                                                                 Posted 29-5-15    

Shirley & Joe Brown of Kirby Bedon's winning cup team

        Halvergate take advantage in first leg of Challenge Cup