- Linea Directa will be sponsoring the tournament for the fifth occasion
The 12th Valencian Lawn Bowls Championships, sponsored once again by Linea Directa, gets underway at both Greenlands and La Marina Bowls Clubs on Wednesday.
For many competitors this will be the first meaningful bowls they have played since lockdown was introduced across Spain in March. At that time all bowling was brought to a halt and it is only very recently that it has resumed with club internal events and competitions.
According to National Director, Bob Donnelly, entries are slightly down on previous years, with many bowlers still reluctant to take part in the competition whilst there is so much uncertainty, but every precaution to ensure the safety of the competitors is being taken and with everybody acting sensibly it should be an enjoyable competition.
Tournament Director John O’Brien said that it is sure to be a learning curve for all competitors, with the need to ‘socially distance’ whilst sharing a rink with others, but if everyone abides by the COVID-19 Protocol, which has been issued to all clubs and bowlers, and which has the approval of local town halls, it will surely be just as successful and enjoyable as always.
The tournament get underway at 10am on Wednesday morning with the Mixed Triples competition at both venues and rather appropriately it will the holders John and Caroline Smyth and Peta Rhodes of the Emerald Isle who get the tournament underway with their preliminary round match in which the National Director, Bob Donnelly, is in the opposing team. Together with Eddie Cowan and Iris Cutting of San Miguel, the threesome should provide stiff opposition for the holders.
A mouth-watering quarter final awaits between the holders and perhaps the champions in waiting, Ann-Marie Stevenson, Drew Gerrard and Colin Lindgren, should both triples progress to that stage.
On Friday both venues will host the Mixed Pairs competition before switching to the Ladies and Gents Pairs competitions on Tuesday 22nd.
The two blue ribbon events, the Gents and the Ladies Singles, currently held by Peter Morgan and Jacqui Johnston, both of Quesada, will get underway two days later. While Jacqui chose not to defend her title Peter will have a bye in the preliminary, before meeting the winner of the Taffe/Donnelly match in round one.
Tie of the preliminary round, two former champions, Martin Foulcer of Vistabella and Colin Lindgren of the Emerald Isle, will meet at Greenlands on 22nd starting at 10am.
Matches throughout the tournament are played on a daily basis at both venues with morning sessions getting underway at 10am and afternoon matches at 2pm.
However the semi final and final stages will be played at Greenlands only from Saturday 26th through to Tuesday 29th with the presentation ceremony taking place on that final afternoon.
Entry to both venues is absolutely free throughout the entire fortnight.