Swindon AdvertiserBOWLS: Middleton Cup squad dominated by local club members (From Swindon Advertiser)

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BOWLS: Middleton Cup squad dominated by local club members

Swindon Advertiser: Mel Biggs is part of the Wiltshire Middleton Cup squad Mel Biggs is part of the Wiltshire Middleton Cup squad

WESTLECOT and Wootton Bassett supply more than half of the team selected by Wiltshire for the county men’s opening Middleton Cup game against Gloucestershire next Saturday.

Seven Westlecot and six Bassett representatives are named in the 24-strong Moonrakers team for the first 2014 inter-county championship group match at home at Wootton Bassett (2pm).

The trio of Mike Jackson and Mel Biggs (Westlecot) and Neil Smith (Wootton Bassett) all boast more than 100 cup appearances while, in sharp contrast, Gary Jackson only has seven.

Bassett’s Barry Sictorness, who has made 69 Cup appearances took a year off from bowls in 2013, is back in the fold again.

Only five clubs have representations in the county men’s first cup side. Besides Westlecot and Wootton Bassett, with 13 players between them, Holt from west Wiltshire have a strong representation, with seven players chosen.

In the group stages ,Wiltshire will also face Worcestershire at home at Bassett on June 14, while their last group game is away to Warwickshire on July 5.

Rink 1: Barry Sictorness (Wootton Bassett), Justin Davis (Holt), Graham Hatherall & Mel Biggs (both Westlecot). Rink 2: Gary Jackson (West), Craig Doughty (Holt), Steve Snell (WB) & Graham Shadwell (Spencer Moulton). Rink 3: Mike Richards (West), Kevin Oliver (Holt), Ian Jefferies & Mike Jackson (both West). Rink 4: Wayne Simmonds (Holt), Chris Cheesley, Dave Godwin (both WB) & Russell Francis (S Moulton). Rink 5: Tom Warner, Nick Revell (both Amesbury), Wayne Snook & Ben Gadd (both Holt). Rink 6: Kevin Embling (West), Keith Bailey (Holt), Gary Morphet & Neil Smith (both WB). Reserves: Paul Kistle, Craig Hatherall (both West), James Nobbs (WB), Bil McCay, Paul Macdonald (both Chippenham T) and Kevin Rowden (Holt). Bassett’s Kyle Anderson was not available for the first Middleton Cup game.

  • WILTSHIRE Bowls Association begin their centenary celebrations in earnest on Thursday, May 29 when Bowls Wiltshire (men) host the Barbarians Bowls Association at Wootton Bassett (2pm).

“The Barbarians BA were formed 50 years ago by three Welsh International bowlers,” said Wiltshire stalwart Howard Pryse, from Swindon BC, who will be playing for the Barbarians. “The Association’s badge depicts ‘Three Stars’.

“The object was to honour male bowlers of any nationality, who have achieved distinction in the playing or administration of bowls and to encourage others to attain such distinction.

“No one can apply to join, they must be recommended and their CV vetted by the management committee.

“Like the Dennyside, they only play friendly/celebration-type matches - the president usually names a charity and they donate whatever funds have been collected at the end of each season.”

WILTSHIRE TEAM

Rink 1: Wayne Simmonds (Holt), Andy Watson (Swindon), Dave Richards (pres. Trow West) & Dave Snell (Wootton Bassett). Rink 2: Don French, Roy Jones (both Trowbridge T), Roger Green (Spencer Moulton) & Martin Whittaker (Chippenham Park). Rink 3: Ben Hatton (Amesbury), Mel Williams (Highworth), Sid Jay & Steve Gedge (both Spencer Melksham). Rink 4: Tom Phillips, Jack Peterson (both Supermarine), Cliff Gumm (Winsley) & Colin Easton (Avon). Rink 5: Alec Burden (Ames), Tony Watchman (Chip P), Dave Pugh (WB) & John Smith (Malmesbury). Rink 6: Del Smith, Dave Edmonds, Harold Jones & Alan Small (all Wootton Bassett).

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