Dutch Open 2016
Manx bowlers recently returned from the World Bowls event having competed in the 3rd International Dutch Open staged at the Haarlem Bowls Club just a few miles outside Amsterdam. They resume their domestic leagues this week having recorded a much improved performance at this event compared with their first outing back in 2014. The ladies pairing of Pam Makin and Bernice McGreal representing the Island were in sparkling form from the outset as they notched up impressive victories against Argentina and a very strong duo from Ireland. The Manx ladies also led England for much of the match in a very closely contested affair which eventually ended in a draw unfortunately leaving both sides in joint fifth position just outside the playoff places.
In the men’s section the father and son pairing of Clive and Michael McGreal found the playing conditions much to their liking on the fast synthetic outdoor surface with the sun shining as they recorded good wins against 2 fine Argentina pairs before an outstanding result against the Irish pairing of Stephen Kirkwood and Robert Maher who suffered their only defeat of the competition against the Manx duo as they went on to become the eventual winners of the Men’s Pairs event. As the Manx pair entered the match against the hosts Netherlands knowing a win would secure a place in the playoffs they started strongly and built a useful lead going into the last end only to drop a count and lose by a single shot which put an end to their competition hopes as they also finished just outside the knock out places.
In the mixed fours event the Manx team played some good composed bowls and displayed some fine performances in the glorious weather and splendid surroundings alongside the picturesque canals and traditional windmills associated with the venue. The Manx rink managed some notable wins over an experienced Jersey side, who went on to become overall winners at the event, and also an outstanding win against the hosts Netherlands playing on their home green.
Overall the Manx team enjoyed some relative success and posted a respectable position for a nation of its size amongst it's much stronger world neighbours. This marks a step forward in the development of the sport on the Island and represents another rung up the ladder in its performance at a world class event. It is worth noting that the Island will now also be represented at the forthcoming World Championships in New Zealand later this year as the Ladies Triples qualified for this prestigious event for the first time ever in the Association’s history.
The Club would like to record its thanks and note the continuing support of local advocates Dougherty Quinn (DQ) who are pleased to include the sport of lawn bowls within their community sponsorship programme. The club is always looking for new members with anyone interested invited to come along and try a session. Please contact the Secretary Win Kewley on 07624 499714 or email firstname.lastname@example.org