Bosham Have Won The Old English Bowling League :


This style of bowling can be traced back many years and Sir Francis Drake is reputed to have played the game on
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Plymouth Hoe shortly before beating off the Spanish Armada. It is thought they may have played with cannon balls.The game is still played on the South Coast of England by a few clubs in the summer on grass. A couple of clubs Titchfield near Fareham, and Alverstoke in Gosport play Old English, but not in the league.
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Two teams from Hayling Island and one team from Havant, Emsworth, and Bosham play in a league. Also inter club cup matches are played. The old game used to be played on a reasonably flat meadow. The Bowls or “woods” as they are known have to have a much higher bias or curve when bowled than other types of bowling because the rink although purposely laid is not completely smooth and some grounds have some very interesting characteristics causing challenges especially to the away team. There is a small white ball (the jack) located initially in a 10-12 foot white square, and the object is to propel the wood some 80ft along the ground and get as near to the jack as possible. There is a square at each end of the rink and players bowl to alternate ends 25 times.

Basic Rules

score card

The rules are different to EBA. For League Bowling there are four sub teams of three people. Each player has two woods, 6 players to a rink with a total of 12 woods. There is a toss-up for who gets to position the jack, it must land in the square at the other end of the rink to begin with "or walked in". Each player bowls his woods in turn. Scoring is determined by how many of the same team's woods are within four feet of the jack. Once an opponent’s bowl is closer to the jack the scoring stops. One point is awarded for each adjacent wood so a maximum of six points can be scored at each end. At the end of the match 1 League Point is awarded to the wining sub-team. If the points are level each sub-team gain half a League Point. The Team that wins the most rinks will receive 2 League Points or if each team win 2 rinks the League Points are shared. Therefore a maximum of 6 League Points can be gained for a match. Each team play each other Home and away once each season.