BOWLS: Teenager Chloe Watson faces toughest possible start in British Isles singles

Alison Merrien (pictured) will take on Chloe Watson in the preliminary round of the women's singles
Alison Merrien (pictured) will take on Chloe Watson in the preliminary round of the women's singles

Following her unprecedented success in the Irish Women’s Indoor National Championships, Chloe Watson will set her sights on winning her first British Isles title at Llanelli next week.

The Belfast player wrote herself into the Irish record books by becoming the first player to win every title on offer – singles, pairs, triples, fours and junior singles – earlier this season.

But she is eligible to contest only two disciplines at British level. Watson will therefore feature in the singles and junior singles in Wales.

It was a similar scenario for Watson’s club colleague Sandra Bailie, who lifted the pairs, triples and fours.

Bailie has opted to compete in the pairs and triples, with Cliodhna Eadie replacing Watson in the former.

Pat Smyth is drafted in to partner Marie McCord and Bailie in the triples.

It meant that the beaten finalists in the Irish fours got an unexpected call for Llanelli. The Ballybrakes Community Stadium rink, Ann Smith, Barbara Logue, Ann McClelland and Jennifer Dowds will complete the Irish line-up.

Watson has been given the toughest possible in her quest to become the first Irish player to win the women’s singles title since the legendary Margaret Johnston back in 1990.

The teenager faces current title holder and six times champion, Alison Merrien, from the Channel Islands in a preliminary round, with the winner earning a semi final slot against Scottish champ Lesley Doig.

And, in an ironic twist, Watson is due to meet Doig in the Under-25 singles prelim tie.

In fact, of the five players that will compete in the senior singles, four of them will be in action in the junior discipline -- Watson, Doig, Katherine Rednall (Englan) and Amy Williams (Wales).

Eadie and Baille have avoided a preliminary round and go in against England’s Sue Kearsley and Janice Gower in the pairs semi finals.

McCord, Smyth and Bailie have also been handed a semi final berth and await the winners of the Kelly Packwood (Wales) versus Carol Barnard (England) in the triples.

But Dowds’ combination must negotiate a prelim tie against England’s Sian Honnor for the right to meet Hanna Clarke’s Wales in the fours semi.

British Isles singles: Preliminary round: C Watson (Ireland) v A Merrien (Channel Islands). Semi final: Watson. Merrien v L Doig (Scotland); A Williams (Wales) v K Rednall (England).

Under-25 singles: Preliminary round: C Watson (Ireland) v L Doig (Scotland). Semi finals: Watson/Doig v A Williams (Wales); K Rednall (England) v C Greechan (Channel Islands).

Pairs: Preliminary round: Kerry Packwood, Kelly Packwood (Wales) v K McAndrew, C Smith (Scotland). Semi finals: Packwood/Smith v S Petit, A Merrien (Channel Islands); C Eadie, S Bailie (Ireland) v S Kearsley, J Gower (England).

Triples: Preliminary round: M McCulloch, Kerry Packwood, Kelly Packwood (Wales) v C Rednall, A Clark, C Barnard (England). Semi finals: Packwood/Barnard v M McCord, P Smyth, S Bailie (Ireland); J Lawrence, S Petit, C Ingrouille (Channel Islands) v C Walker, M Letham, C Brown (Scotland).

Fours: Preliminary round: A Smith, B Logue, A McClelland, J Dowds (Ireland) v S Godfrey, L Gray, L Kuhler, S Honnor (England). Semi finals: Dowds/Honnor v M Morley, J McCarthy, L Willis, H Clarke (Wales); C McLean, M Bingham, M Shimmons, C Johnston (Scotland) v L Greechan, H Greechan, D Moon, C Greechan (Channel Islands).


Belfast Indoor Bowls Club Men’s Evening Leagues

Monday: J Frazer 10 A Robinson 13, S Hegan 9 M McKeown 14, M Brown 10 J Miller 8, S Kirkwood 8 D Millar 6, S Dalzell 20 S Templeton 10, J Hinds 17 S Vance 11, I McCoy 14 G Watters 9.

Tuesday “A’’: M Leckey 23 M Hedley 7, B Daly 20 J Forsythe 6, K Armstrong 9 M Merritt 9, C Campbell 17 P McVeigh 7, D Hamilton 13 J McGettrick 12.

Tuesday “B’’: B Carroll 13 N Edmonson 10, J Allen 11 A Entwistle 10, B Hunter 15 A O’Rourke 13, B Bell 11 JH Campbell 13, M Irvine 6 A Reid 17, E Thompson 12 S Malcolmson 11, A Brown 13 M Simpson 12.

Wednesday: J Miller 10 W Thompson 9, J Gallagher 12 W Moran 13, J Marshall 5 R Simpson 15, D Porter 12 S Elliman 10.

Thursday: J Frazer 8 D Livingston 16, J Forsythe 9 JH Campbell 24, J Hinds 7 F Simpson 17, S Elliman 19 A Bailie 11, B Dorman 10 T Gill 7.

Friday: J Marshall 5 S Adamson 20, C Craig 15 D Simpson 12, D Clarke 4 E McCourt 24, N Mulholland 27 N Hamilton 7.

Men’s Saturday League: M Merritt 11 W Thompson 9, P McVeigh 8 M Hedley 16, JHeron 12 B Nixon 9, J Marshall 18 A Bailie 3, B Dorman 10 M Dunlop 8, A Briggs 42, H Murray 4, D Simpson 21 B Kelso 7, F Simpson 17 S Hegan 5, M Leckey 14 D Burns 7.