Para-Bowls National Championships
The Para-National Championships have become an integral part of the Bowls Scotland National Championships in recent years with the best players from all around the country competing in their respective disciplines.
Across the last two days of the Championships the final stages of the competition are completed at the National Centre for Bowling in Ayr with new champions for the year being crowned. The games always attract a large crowd of spectators in awe of the dedication, determination and talent on show.
The first Para-National Championships were held at Northfield in 2015 with only two disciplines taking place under the flagship of Scottish Disability Sport. However, the event has continued to grow year-on-year since then and there is now a total of five disciplines that both ladies and gents in the physically disabled and visually impaired categories can compete in.
2019 was the biggest year for the Para-Bowls programme in Scotland so far, we announced in March 2019 that the programme would be fully integrated into the Bowls Scotland High-Performance programme. The programme now has a specific Para-Bowls Co-Ordinator in Bob Christie who works alongside High-Performance Coach, David Gourlay MBE and Performance Operations Manager, Craig Bolan. All these positive changes led to Scotland’s para-bowlers competing in their first test-match alongside a Scottish emerging squad against Australia’s Jackaroos at Royal Leamington Spa, the host venue for the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. There were also 30 players that qualified for the 2019 Para-National Championship finals – the biggest number since the competition began.
Scotland are considered one of the strongest nations in the world when it comes to Para-Bowls and have had many successes over the years in the Para Home Nations, IBD World Championships and Commonwealth Games. The most recent Scottish success at a Commonwealth Games came in 2014 when Robert Conway and Irene Edgar won silver in the B2/B3 Mixed Pairs with directors Ron McArthur and David Thomas at Kelvingrove.
We hope to see the Para-Bowls programme grow and expand even more in the years to come and continue to prove that bowls really is a sport for all.