After a very successful tour to East London last year, a follow up tour was planned and took place between the 5th and 9th October 2016. It was hoped to take 3 teams this year, the two boy’s teams who participated last year, and a girls team, but that did not materialise due to lack of funds. Had it not been for the generous sponsorships from Bill Bowen, John Ledger and Chris Rodgers, we would probably only have taken 1 team.
Also, thanks must go to the parents who all raised R 500.00 per person, in the form of raffle ticket sales which helped to cover costs. Rose Wookey very kindly donated 3 printers which will be raffled at a date yet to be decided.
Ten boys, and two ‘supervisors’ left at 05h00 from the Randburg Bowls Club on Wednesday 5th October and arrived in King Williamstown just before 16h00 that afternoon. We were all staying in the Dale School Hostel and after unpacking we made our way to the King Williamstown Bowling Club for a practice and a braai.
Thursday 6th October was the start of the tournament. 10 sides had entered the competition, with the two extra boys from Johannesburg forming part of the Invitation side which had been entered to replace our third side which we had withdrawn. The format was that there were 3 games on day 1, 3 games on day 2, and 2 games on day 3. We had two teams, as did Dale and Cambridge so the organizers decided that the teams from the same club/school/etc., would not play against one another and that, should it be necessary, shot difference would decide the winner. Tea was provided after the first game and lunch after the second game.
The first day’s play was at King Williamstown Bowling Club, the second day was at Typos Bowling Club in East London, and the third at Comrades Bowling Club also in East London. The East London trip necessitated travelling as we stayed in King Williamstown. Breakfast was provided in the hostel each morning at 08h00 and we travelled to the venues at 08h30. Play started each day at 09h30 and each game was played over 10 ends.
Our A Team, comprising Christian Kerr, Rhett Austin, Tyler Boonzaier and Charl Potgieter lost only one game, to the Dale A side and eventually finished second overall.
Our B Team, comprising Josh Wookey, Liam Armstrong, Donald Fowler and Kyle Smith went through unbeaten and won the tournament – for the second year in a row. The Invitation Team in which Lethabo Mathibela and Xavian Kramer played every game,
eventually came fourth, beating the Dale A team in the last game on a measure.
One of the new teams in the tournament, Alphendale, only played on the Thursday.
There were apparently transport problems for the youngsters – whether this was because it was a working day, I am not sure, but a decision had to be taken regarding their continued participation. It was decided that, due to the uncertainty of whether they would make it later, or not at all, to withdraw them and expunge all results from matches already played. Other than that, the tournament was well organized and the standard of play was certainly at a higher level that experienced in 2015. In the speeches at the end of the tournament, the Dale manager thanked the Border Bowling Association for the sponsorship for the local bowlers which covered green fees, lunch, teas, and travelling costs. I embarrassingly couldn’t do the same – JBA contributed nothing.
We have committed to going back next year and hopefully three teams will be able to go.
We left early on the morning of 9th October and arrived at Randburg Bowls Club just before 16h00 that afternoon.
Once again, thanks to all who made the trip possible:
- Bill Bowen
- John Ledger
- Chris Rodgers
- All parents
The winning team of Donald Fowler, Liam Armstrong, Josh Wookey and Kyle Smith
The players who eventually finished the tournament – Alphendale unfortunately had to withdraw.
The two Joburg sides – Josh, Charl, Liam, Christian, Rhett, Donald, Tyler and Kyle in front. Next year no hats in the photo’s and we might see faces.
The Dale ‘A’ side who played against our winning ‘B’ side.
All the players before the start of Day 1.