Lismore Heights bowler Trevor Clarke defended the NRDBA senior singles title with a 31-29 win against Terry McFadden.
Lismore Heights bowler Trevor Clarke defended the NRDBA senior singles title with a 31-29 win against Terry McFadden. Debrah Novak

Ballina and Southies bowlers continue their pennant rivalry

ARCH rivals South Lismore and Ballina No 1s started the new pennant season in the way they finished last year’s – neck-and-neck.

Both scored 10 points in the opening round – Ballina with a margin of 34 shots over Alstonville, the Southies with a 32-shot margin over Casino RSM.

The two leaders will meet at South Lismore this Saturday in round two.

In the other first round top grade match, East Lismore had a nine points to one victory over Lennox Head. The margin was a skinny one shot.

Evans Head leads the No 2s with 10 points; Lismore Heights has nine.

In No 3s, it’s Kyogle in front on 10 points, closely followed by Ballina and Lismore City, both on nine.

Casino RSM and Alstonville share the lead on nine points in No 4s, as do Ballina RSL and Lismore Heights in No 5s.

In No 6s, South Lismore and Lismore Workers Sports each have 10 points, while Lennox Head and South Lismore share 10 points in No 7s.

The No 1 draw for this Saturday (home side first) is: Alstonville v East Lismore, Lennox Head v Casino RSM, and South Lismore v Ballina.

MIXED MESSAGES

WHEN Bowls NSW announced that No 1 pennants would not be contested by 16 zones this season but by five “conferences”, it said the Northern Conference comprised Northern Rives and Tweed-Byron districts.

But currently on its website, dated March 9, a report on the start of the season says play was already under way “in the Hunter Conference (Hunter, Newcastle, Central Coast) and the Northern Conference (Manning and Mid/Lower North Coast)”. The Metropolitan, Southern and Western conferences “all start on Saturday, March 12”.

“The Tweed-Byron section of the Northern Conference kicks off April 2,” the website says.

Confused? I am.

RINK RULES

DIFFERING views exist over the use of rinks for roll-ups before a pennant game starts.

Bowls NSW conditions of play state bowlers may practise 30 minutes before the scheduled starting time, providing rink space is available and the controlling body agrees.

Once the rink draw is made, bowlers may not practise on the rink on which they are to play.

HOUDINI ESCAPE

IN what was described as the “Houdini escape of the year”, Trevor Clarke (Lismore Heights) came from 14-26 behind to get to the 31 mark first and take the Northern Rivers District Bowls Association’s senior singles title 31-29 against Lennox Head’s Terry McFadden. Clarke won 10 of the last 13 ends.

Despite being interrupted twice by rain, it was a high standard final that lasted 44 ends, 27 of which were decided by a single shot.

Clarke, who won this championship last year, was defending his title.

BOWLERS WANTED

AGED over 60 and looking for a good bowls day out?

Then the Northern Rivers Veterans’ regular visits to clubs around the district are for you. There’s one at Kyogle on Tuesday.

To be in it, phone Barrie Enright on 6628 2143. He wants names as soon as possible for catering.

COUGAR CREW

KEEPING a cool head while playing will be no trouble for three of a women’s four at Coolum on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast.

Calling themselves the Crew Cut Cougars, they’re getting their heads shaved to raise money in the World’s Greatest Shave.

The fourth member of the team is keeping her locks but will submit to having them coloured.

The women hope to raise $5000.

MARKING MAYHEM

THE marker in a singles game at one time just had to keep the score and stay awake. Nowadays, the list of responsibilities is as long as your arm.

According to one bowls journal that devotes an entire page to the job, the marker also must carry a swag of gear – chalk/spray chalk, a box string measure, pen/pencil, scorecard, coin, shot indicators if required by the controlling body.

Seems all the bowler has to carry is the good wishes of mates.

BOWLS IDEALS

AN old-time piece on what bowls is all about says: “Bowls is a science in which you might exhaust yourself but never your subject. It is a contest calling for skill, strategy and self-control. It is a test of temper, a trial of honour, a revealer of character. It affords the chance to play the man and act the gentleman. It is a cure for care, an antidote to worry. It includes companionship, social intercourse, opportunities for courtesy, kindliness and generosity to an opponent. It promotes not only physical health but moral force.”

That was written 60 years ago. How does it stack up against the modern game?

COMING UP: South Lismore’s Country Classic Open Pairs on Friday and Saturday, March 25-26.

See tomorrow’s The Northern Star for more bowls news and views from Jim Brigginshaw.



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