Tweedbank’s Scottish hopes lie with Miller Snr

WITH the end of the indoor bowling season edging closer, Saturday past saw the last of the Scottish playdowns take place.

This time it was the fours category for both ladies and gents and in the case of the ladies, Tweedbank Bowling Club was represented by Sheena White, Rita Jefferson, Margaret Aitken and Sue Davis. For them, it was an early start, travelling to the East Fife stadium in Methil to face a four from East Lothian.

This was a close match, and with one end left to play, the Borders ladies were one shot behind. Unfortunately, they were unable to secure that all-important single and their opponents proceeded.

For the Tweedbank men there was a bye into the first round for Ben McGregor, Ross Nichol, Malcolm Thin and Kenny Johnstone. They travelled to the Abbeyview stadium in Dunfermline where, as suspected, they faced a four from West Lothian. This was expected to be a tough match for the men, who had already faced two of their four opponents in the triples playdown in January.

Neither team was playing to their full potential and although West Lothian appeared to be the stronger team, an early gap built up by them was reduced to a single.

With the match still finely balanced, the Tweedbank four were lying well until a firing shot forced the end to be replayed. At this point disaster struck as all four Borders players produced their worst bowls, allowing West Lothian to pick up a count of seven. Despite their best efforts they could not recover the situation in the remaining ends and West Lothian progressed to the next round.

This defeat completes a disappointing season in Scottish competitions ... with the one exception. On Saturday, David Miller Snr will travel to Glasgow to contest the semi-final of the seniors singles and, if successful, he returns on Sunday for the final.

At club level, lists are on the noticeboards for two-bowl pairs for ladies and gents also the under-25 singles. In addition, there is the Nan Wintrup pairs competition in respect of which more names from the ladies are required.

Early notice is also given of the annual general meeting which will take place on Sunday, March 31. In the meantime, the minutes of last year’s meeting will be displayed on each of the noticeboards from next week. z Tweedbank Indoor Bowling Club, in partnership with Borders Sport and Leisure and the Scottish Association for Blind Bowlers, will host an open day for the visually impaired on March 17.

The free session will run from 2-6pm and is the first step towards offering visually impaired Borderers the opportunity to regularly participate in para-bowls.

Alan Oliver, Borders Sport and Leisure’s disability development officer, said: “The Borders hosted the first para-bowling coaching workshop in Scotland last November and it is brilliant to see Tweedbank Bowling Club embrace the sport and set up this session to try and attract potential players.

“Bowling for the visually impaired is a really enjoyable, sociable activity and it is suitable for people of many different ages and fitness levels.

“The bowling coaches who attended the workshop have been inspired by it and Tweedbank Bowling Club is committed to being a community inclusive club, giving blind Borderers the chance to get involved.”

Anyone interested in attending should register by contacting Tweedbank Bowling Club on 01896 756396 or by email.