COUNTY MANAGER: WARKS NEEDS YOU! BOWLS.
WARWICKSHIRE County Bowls Association kick off their competitive campaign with Midland Counties league matches at Entaco Bowls Club against Lincolnshire on May 14 and Northamptonshire a week later.
Lincolnshire narrowly avoided the league's wooden spoon last season while Northamptonshire finished on the same number of points as runners-up Warwickshire but with an inferior shots difference.
Acting team manager Aubrey Brookhouse is hoping the team carries forward its impressive end to last season's campaign of four straight wins - three in the Midland league and one against eventual Middleton Cup winners Cornwall.
Calling for support for the county's senior teams during their forthcoming Midland Counties and cup games, he said: "I plead with fellow bowlers and county executive members to come along to as many of our senior matches as they can to give our squad the support they deserve.
"It as been disappointing in the past that at some of our home games there have been more opposition supporters than home ones.
"I believe with the little bit of luck every team deserves this could well be a truly memorable year for Warwickshire at both Midland Counties and Middleton Cup levels.
"Your support will be appreciated by the team, myself and our president Rob Maries."
The team versus Northants (2pm start) is: Brian Lees, (Welford), Jim Freeman (Kings Heath), Mick Hawkins and Martin Timms (both Welford), Matt Wells, Chris Howes (both Rugby), Simon Gilbert (Whitnash) and Calvin Wells (Rugby), Liam Pearcey (Grange), Peter Bryan (Entaco), Greg Sampson (Avenue Coventry) and Andy Smith (Avenue Leamington).
Martyn Murley, Tom Millership, Stuart Thomas and Alan Apsey (all Rugby), Rob Robinson (Erdington Court). Chris Barton (Kings Heath), Dan Box (Little Compton) and Graham Ashby (Rugby), Craig Carter (Rugby), Steve Taylor (Avenue Coventry), Neil Hancock (Little Compton) and Colin Jacox (Avenue Coventry).
Reserves: Kevin Tandy (Southam) and Richard Roberts (Stratford Police).
Following the Lincolnshire and Northamptonshire matches, Warwickshire will line up against Leicestershire at the away venue of Enderby BC on May 28 and a week later on June 4 will play the first of their three Middleton Cup round robin games against Devon at Exonia BC.
The other two matches will be against Cornwall at Taunton Vivary Park BC on June 18 and versus Worcestershire at Entaco BC on July 9. * Warwickshire's first friendly inter-county match of the season is against Middlesex as Stratford BC on Tuesday, May 10, at 2pm.
The selected team is John Shepperd (Bidford), Alan Seager (West Midland Police), Trevor Bennett (Stratford) and Rob Maries (County President), Roger Wooton (Avenue Leamington), Bob Page (Grange), Ron Rose (Stratford) and Gareth Willcock (Senior Vice-President), Tony Smith (Avenue Coventry), Jim Phillips (Bournville), Bob Bradley (Rugby) and John Williams (Execut ive).
Barry Lines (Rugby), Arnold Goad (Secretary), Dennis Wilkinson (Stoke) and Terry Castle (Norgren), Les Ball (Avenue Coventry), Mike Brayne (Junior Vice- President), Tom Gilbert (Ambleside) and Phil Bale (Grange), Alan Kemp (Ambleside), Ray Antill (Rugby), Mike Jackson (Treasurer) and Roy Lawrence (Avenue Coventry).
County president Rob Maries will start his series of president's matches with a six rinks game against the county ladies at Sherwood Park BC on Wednesday, May 18.
The selected team as follows: A Whitefoot (Sherwood Park), C Andrew (Entaco), P Dale (Avenue Leamington) and Rob Maries (President), D Powell (Wolvey), A Goad (Secretary), W Mulligan (Tamworth) and G Smith (Nuneaton).
J Ward (Sherwood Park), A MacKintosh (Warwick CC Staff), I Brown (Kings Heath) and A Brookhouse (Past President), R Moore (Avenue Coventry), J Creff (Southam), K Shuttleworth (Wolvey) and R Parnell (Tamworth), P Wadland (Avenue Leamington), R Andrews (Entaco), B Mace-Humphries (Grange) and D Casey (Bournville), R Lewis (Highway), M Jackson (Treasurer), G Palmer (Bilton) and S Orton (Past President).
Other president's matches are against the IMPS, Wolvey (mixed), Three Spires, English Fire Services, Fenny Compton, Solihull Municipal, Warwickshire Indoor Bowls Association, Warwickshire Vice-Presidents, Rugby BC, and Warwick Boat Club.
The county secretary's team will play Rugby BC as part of the club's centenary celebrations on Sunday, June 12, and against Royal Household BC at Bidford-on Avon on Saturday, July 9. Warwickshire ladies got their season under way with their traditional gala day at Sherwood Park BC, the home club of senior vicepresident Barbara Harsant. A total of 46 ladies took part and the eventual winner was Lillington's Chris Richards.
Warwickshire Vice-Presidents commenced their match programme at Halford Bowls Club with the annual Chairman v Deputy Chairman game which resulted in a 124-92 win for the chairman's side.
A pleasant afternoon ended with a fish and chips supper in the village hall.
Rink scores (Chairman names first): Jim Gardner, Eric Heath, Mike Soloman, Mike Gilks (Chairman) 26 Derek Wattison (Deputy Chairman), Mike Brayne, Mike Westell, George Palmer 15, Ron Jackson, Tony Ridpath, Ian Bassnett, Ken Padimore 17 Ted Simmons, Ted Poole, Paul Brown, Gareth Willcock 17, Stewart Barton, Bernard Crowther, Roger Eaton, David Thomas 15 James Richard, Rex Fox, Derrick Pratt, Dennis Lee 16.
David Eden, Ken Sloan, Tony Parsons, Keith Francis 25 Peter Shone, Ben Freeman, Graham Taylor, Keith Rawlings 19, Brian Meacham, Jack Hands, Dave Goodman, Dave Longdon 20 Martin Evans, Brian Hunt, John Stewart, George Smith 14, Dave Phillips, Ron Campbell, Richard Wilsdon, Alan Bister 21 Geoff Hawlin, Ray Padbury, Bill Fox, Morris Clayton 11.
RALLYING CALL: County president Rob Maries (left) and acting team manager Aubrey Brookhouse want more support for their teams. Above: Warwickshire Ladies president Margaret Andrew (centre) with senior vice-president Barbara Harsant (left) and gala winner Chris Richards.