The British Isles Women’s Bowls Council (BIWBC) has agreed a new-look for its international events to increase awareness of the women’s game in the UK and closer align with the formats at world events.
The cancellation of all international bowls in the UK in 2020 due to Covid-19 presented an opportunity for representatives of England, Ireland, Jersey, Scotland and Wales to undertake a review of the two International Series for women.
A period of consultation with key stakeholders in all five nations had been undertaken and a revamp of the event was widely supported.
The revised format will see the introduction of a ‘Top 10’ style event in 2021 featuring singles, pairs, triples and fours disciplines in place of the more traditional four-rink and six-rink events at junior and senior level respectively.
The new event will mean shorter, faster games with players participating in a range of disciplines that mirror the formats utilised at Commonwealth Games and World Bowls. It will also provide the potential for top players and teams in each discipline to compete directly against each other – an opportunity that does not currently exist in the UK.
Two teams per nation will be eligible to participate in both events, meaning the new-look will continue to provide players access to international experience in line with the current formats.
The new-look will be introduced at the Senior Internationals when England are the hosts at Victoria Park, Royal Leamington Spa, from Sunday 20th to Tuesday 22nd June 2021. The Junior Series will be held on Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th July 2021 at Llandrindod Wells, Wales.
BIWBC representatives will continue to work together to finalise the scheduling for both events and will circulate details once confirmed.
For 2021 only, and due to the Covid-19 enforced cancellation of the Junior Series in 2020, eligibility for the Women’s Junior International Series has been amended by one year to provide an opportunity for players to participate in their final year at that level. All players that were aged 25 and under on 1st April 2020 will therefore be eligible for selection in 2021.
BIWBC Programme of Events 2021
- Senior Championships: Friday 18th & Saturday 19th June (Royal Leamington Spa , England)
- Senior Series: Sunday 20th to Tuesday 22nd June (Royal Leamington Spa, England)
- Junior Series: Saturday 24th & Sunday 25th July (Llandrindod Wells, Wales)
- Junior Championships: Sunday 25th July (Llandrindod Wells, Wales)
BIWBC AGM Minutes and Bowls England position
For clarity and openness, following internal consultation, Bowls England developed its own proposal for consideration by the BIWBC. We felt this better met our core principles of gender equality, providing an optimal platform to test and develop our best players and a desire to present our sport in a modern, relevant way. Whilst we naturally favoured our approach, we respect the decision which was made democratically. We have no desire to look back and we will now work collaboratively to help make the new event a success on and off the green for players and spectators alike.