Aussie Rules on Norwich Lawn Bowling Club Greens


Linda Hawken, VP Norwich Lawnbowling Club

Preston Cycles of Norwich once more sponsored a tournament at Norwich Lawn Bowling Club, this time an Australian Pairs one on July 12th. (For an explanation of this game, see the final large paragraph of this article.) Despite forecasts to the contrary, thunderstorms did not appear, for which the players were thankful, however a few showers dampened them but certainly didn’t deter from play.

Fourteen teams from across southwestern Ontario – namely Thamesford, Woodstock, Stratford, Port Dalhouse, Ancaster, Hagersville, St George and of course Norwich – took part. They were served the usual goodies from the kitchen thanks to Kay and Henk Couwenberg. Drawmaster duties were shared between Kathleen Welch, Tony Hawken and Candace Teetzel.

When three games had been played and all the scores had been tallied, the winners were Peter and Lesley Kurn of Stratford with a total of 52+6 points and 3 wins. In second place, also with 3 wins, was the team of Dave Bell (Port Dalhousie) and Katherine Smith (Ancaster) who had 44+3 points. Jim and Sue Roth of Thamesford took third place, winning 2 games and having 50+5 points. Fourth place went to Carman and Clare Morris of Hagersville who also won 2 games and had a total of 45+1 points. In fifth place was the team of Gary Moore (Woodstock) and Deanna Palmer (Thamesford) who had 2 wins and 39 points. The final place, with 1 win and the highest number of aggregate points (32+2) went to Graham and Brenda Darmon of Norwich.

There aren’t many different formats of games to play in lawn bowling apart from singles, pairs, triples and fours, all of which are self-explanatory. But the game of Australian Pairs is one of those differences. In this formant, teams play as pairs. In a normal pairs game, the Lead (first player) would bowl all four of their bowls, alternating with the Lead on the other team. They would then change ends with their Skips (‘captain’ of the team) who would then bowl all four of their bowls, again playing alternately. However, in Australian Pairs (sometimes known as 2-4-2) Leads alternately deliver two bowls, then change ends with their Skips who bowl all four of their bowls, the players again change ends and the Leads deliver their final two bowls. This order remains the same throughout the game but on every other end, the team players exchange positions whereby Skips would deliver the first two bowls, Leads would deliver four and then the Skips deliver the final two bowls. In other words, there is no real ‘Skip’ in the team as the order in which they bowl changes every other end. It sounds complicated but once a few ends have been played, the confusion is usually sorted. There is more walking involved in this format and that makes for a bit more exercise over the course of the tournament too.

Photo: L to R, back row: Lesley & Peter Kurn (1), Dave Bell & Katherine Smith (2), Sue & Jim Roth (3); front row: Gary Moore & Deanna Palmer (5), Brenda & Graham Darmon (6). Missing: Carman & Clare Morris (4)

Photo credit: Linda Hawken