As part of our new series, we will be profiling the future stars of bowls at both international & county level. In this edition, we focus on Mark Smith of Warwickshire, who has two National Titles to his name and has a wealth of experience whilst being regarded as one of the best leads in his home county.
CLUB: Avenue BC (Leamington Spa)
SOCIAL CHANNELS: Instagram
Success to date
LIST OF ACHIEVEMENTS:
- National Family Pairs winner 2018
- Balcomb Trophy winner 2019
- National Fours semi-finalist 2021
- U18 International 2016
- Junior International 2019
- County Triples Junior Pairs winner 2017, 2018, 2019
- County Fours finalist 2015, 2021
GREATEST ACHIEVEMENT TO DATE:
Putting on the England colours for the first time in a Junior International series. Even though the series result did not go the way we wanted, it was great to be a part of an international series, with hopefully many more to come.
MOST MEMORABLE MATCH & WHY:
The National Family Pairs final in 2018. With it being my first National Final, it was always going to be nerve wracking, however, to get over the line and claim my first National title was a great feeling – and winning it with my Dad was even better.
The first year that I started, aged 10, during the indoor season. In the club triples competition, there were two people who were one player short, and they came and asked me if I would play with them. This was my first experience of playing competitive bowls, which we ended up winning the whole competition.
For me, as a lead it would have to be pairs as you are always involved and effecting the game whether it be bowling your bowls or directing the skip with what shot to play next.
Positivity and encouragement, this is key when playing team games especially as these aspects can benefit your teammates and give them confidence that they can get any shot that they are looking to play.
BEST FRIENDS IN BOWLS:
Daniel Ellicott, Adam Smith, Luke Horne plus many more.
Regularly getting to the latter stages during the National Finals and breaking into the Senior International Team.
ONE THING YOU’D SAY TO GET SOMEONE TO TRY BOWLS:
It is a lot more fun, sociable and difficult than you think.
COMMONWEALTH CRYSTAL BALL – HOW WILL TEAM ENGLAND GET ON:
The team selected perform well consistently on Leamington’s greens so I can’t see why they won’t perform well during the Games.
If you know a young player in your club or county who we should feature on a future Bowls NxGen, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.