Bowls

Bowls or lawn bowls is a sport in which the objective is to roll biased balls so that they stop close to a smaller ball called a "jack" or "kitty". It is played on a bowling green which may be flat (for "flat-green bowls") or convex or uneven (for "crown green bowls"). It is normally played outdoors (although there are many indoor venues) and the outdoor surface is either natural grass, artificial turf, or cotula (in New Zealand).

Bowls
Lawn Bowling - Tim Mason1
Canadian lawn bowler Tim Mason
First played13th century
Characteristics
TypeBowling
EquipmentBowl/wood and jack/kitty

History

Bowls match
Bowls match in progress at Wookey Hole, United Kingdom

It has been traced certainly to the 13th century, and conjecturally to the 12th. William Fitzstephen (d. about 1190), in his biography of Thomas Becket, gives a graphic sketch of the London of his day and, writing of the summer amusements of the young men, says that on holidays they were "exercised in Leaping, Shooting, Wrestling, Casting of Stones [in jactu lapidum], and Throwing of Javelins fitted with Loops for the Purpose, which they strive to fling before the Mark; they also use Bucklers, like fighting Men."[1] It is commonly supposed that by jactus lapidum, Fitzstephen meant the game of bowls, but though it is possible that round stones may sometimes have been employed in an early variety of the game - and there is a record of iron bowls being used, though at a much later date, on festive occasions at Nairn, - nevertheless the inference seems unwarranted. The jactus lapidum of which he speaks may have been more akin to shot put. It is beyond dispute, however, that the game, at any rate in a rudimentary form, was played in the 13th century. A manuscript of that period in the royal library, Windsor (No. 20, E iv.), contains a drawing representing two players aiming at a small cone instead of an earthenware ball or jack. The world's oldest surviving bowling green is the Southampton Old Bowling Green, which was first used in 1299.[2]

Another manuscript of the same century has a crude but spirited picture which brings us into close touch with the existing game. Three figures are introduced and a jack. The first player's bowl has come to rest just in front of the jack; the second has delivered his bowl and is following after it with one of those eccentric contortions still not unusual on modern greens, the first player meanwhile making a repressive gesture with his hand, as if to urge the bowl to stop short of his own; the third player is depicted as in the act of delivering his bowl.[3] A 14th-century manuscript, Book of Prayers, in the Francis Douce collection in the Bodleian Library at Oxford contains a drawing in which two persons are shown, but they bowl to no mark. Strutt (Sports and Pastimes) suggests that the first player's bowl may have been regarded by the second player as a species of jack; but in that case it is not clear what was the first player's target. In these three earliest illustrations of the pastime it is worth noting that each player has one bowl only, and that the attitude in delivering it was as various five or six hundred years ago as it is today. In the third he stands almost upright; in the first he kneels; in the second he stoops, halfway between the upright and the kneeling position.

The game eventually came under the ban of king and parliament, both fearing it might jeopardise the practice of archery, then so important in battle. Statutes forbidding it and other sports were enacted in the reigns of Edward III, Richard II and other monarchs. Even when, on the invention of gunpowder and firearms, the bow had fallen into disuse as a weapon of war, the prohibition was continued. The discredit attaching to bowling alleys, first established in London in 1455, probably encouraged subsequent repressive legislation, for many of the alleys were connected with taverns frequented by the dissolute and gamesters. The word "bowls" occurs for the first time in the statute of 1511 in which Henry VIII confirmed previous enactments against unlawful games. By a further act of 1541—which was not repealed until 1845—artificers, labourers, apprentices, servants and the like were forbidden to play bowls at any time except Christmas, and then only in their master's house and presence. It was further enjoined that any one playing bowls outside his own garden or orchard was liable to a penalty of 6s. 8d.(6 shillings and 8 pence), while those possessed of lands of the yearly value of £100 might obtain licences to play on their own private greens.

In 1864 William Wallace Mitchell (1803–1884), a Glasgow Cotton Merchant, published his "Manual of Bowls Playing" following his work as the secretary formed in 1849 by Scottish bowling clubs which became the basis of the rules of the modern game. Young Mitchell was only 11 when he played on Kilmarnock Bowling green, the oldest club in Scotland, instituted in 1740.

British bowlers (HS85-10-17553)
British bowls team visiting Canada, 1906
Lawn bowls, Central Park
Bowling greens in New York City's Central Park

The patenting of the first lawn mower in 1830, in Britain, is strongly believed to have been the catalyst, worldwide, for the preparation of modern-style greens, sporting ovals, playing fields, pitches, grass courts, etc. This is turn led to the codification of modern rules for many sports, including lawn bowls, most football codes, lawn tennis and others.[4]

National Bowling Associations were established in the late 1800s. In the then Victorian Colony (now State of Victoria in Australia), the (Royal) Victorian Bowling Association was formed in 1880 and The Scottish Bowling Association was established in 1892, although there had been a failed attempt in 1848 by 200 Scottish clubs.

Today the sport is played in over 40 countries with more than 50 member national authorities. The home of the modern game is still Scotland with the World Bowls centre in Edinburgh at Caledonia House,1 Redheughs Rigg, South Gyle, Edinburgh, EH12 9DQ.

Game

Drumoak and district bowling green
Drumoak bowling green

Lawn bowls is usually played on a large, rectangular, precisely levelled and manicured grass or synthetic surface known as a bowling green which is divided into parallel playing strips called rinks. In the simplest competition, singles, one of the two opponents flips a coin to see who wins the "mat" and begins a segment of the competition (in bowling parlance, an "end"), by placing the mat and rolling the jack to the other end of the green to serve as a target. Once it has come to rest, the jack is aligned to the centre of the rink and the players take turns to roll their bowls from the mat towards the jack and thereby build up the "head".

A bowl may curve outside the rink boundary on its path, but must come to rest within the rink boundary to remain in play. Bowls falling into the ditch are dead and removed from play, except in the event when one has "touched" the jack on its way. "Touchers" are marked with chalk and remain alive in play even if they get into the ditch. Similarly if the jack is knocked into the ditch it is still alive unless it is out of bounds to the side resulting in a "dead" end which is replayed, though according to international rules the jack is "respotted" to the centre of the rink and the end is continued. After each competitor has delivered all of their bowls (four each in singles and pairs, three each in triples, and two bowls each in fours), the distance of the closest bowls to the jack is determined (the jack may have been displaced) and points, called "shots", are awarded for each bowl which a competitor has closer than the opponent's nearest to the jack. For instance, if a competitor has bowled two bowls closer to the jack than their opponent's nearest, they are awarded two shots. The exercise is then repeated for the next end, a game of bowls typically being of twenty-one ends.

Lawn bowls is played on grass and variations from green to green are common. Greens come in all shapes and sizes, fast, slow, big crown, small crown and so on.

Bowls is generally played in a very good spirit, even at the highest professional level, acknowledgment of opponents' successes and near misses being quite normal.

Scoring

Scoring systems vary from competition to competition. Games can be decided when:

  • a player in a singles game reaches a specified target number of shots (usually 21 or 25).
  • a team (pair, triple or four) has the higher score after a specified number of ends.

Games to a specified number of ends may also be drawn. The draw may stand, or the opponents may be required to play an extra end to decide the winner. These provisions are always published beforehand in the event's Conditions of Play.

In the Laws of the Sport of Bowls[5] the winner in a singles game is the first player to score 21 shots. In all other disciplines (pairs, triples, fours) the winner is the team who has scored the most shots after 21/25 ends of play. Often local tournaments will play shorter games (often 10 or 12 ends). Some competitions use a "set" scoring system, with the first to seven points awarded a set in a best-or-three or best-of-five set match. As well as singles competition, there can be two (pairs), three (triples) and four-player (fours) teams. In these, teams bowl alternately, with each player within a team bowling all their bowls, then handing over to the next player. The team captain or "skip" always plays last and is instrumental in directing his team's shots and tactics. The current method of scoring in the professional tour (World Bowls Tour) is sets. Each set consists of nine ends and the player with the most shots at the end of a set wins the set. If the score is tied the set is halved. If a player wins two sets, or gets a win and a tie, that player wins the game. If each player wins a set, or both sets end tied, there is a 3-end tiebreaker to determine a winner.

Swifts creek bowls club
Swifts Creek Bowls Club

Bias of bowls

Bowls&Kitty
Two bowls with club stickers. The jack/kitty is sitting in front of the bowls.

Bowls are designed to travel a curved path because of a weight bias which was originally produced by inserting weights in one side of the bowl. This is no longer permitted by the rules and bias is now produced entirely by the shape of the bowl. A bowler determines the bias direction of the bowl in his hand by a dimple or symbol on one side. Regulations determine the minimum bias allowed, and the range of diameters (11.6 to 13.1 cm), but within these rules bowlers can and do choose bowls to suit their own preference. They were originally made from lignum vitae, a dense wood giving rise to the term "woods" for bowls, but are now more typically made of a hard plastic composite material.

Bowls were once only available coloured black or brown but they are now available in a variety of colours. They have unique symbol markings engraved on them for identification. Since many bowls look the same, coloured, adhesive stickers or labels are also used to mark the bowls of each team in bowls matches. Some local associations agree on specific colours for stickers for each of the clubs in their area. Provincial or national colours are often assigned in national and international competitions. These stickers are used by officials to distinguish teams.

Bowls have symbols unique to the set of four for identification. The side of the bowl with a larger symbol within a circle indicates the side away from the bias. That side with a smaller symbol within a smaller circle is the bias side toward which the bowl will turn. It is not uncommon for players to deliver a "wrong bias" shot from time to time and see their carefully aimed bowl crossing neighbouring rinks rather than heading towards their jack.

When bowling there are several types of delivery. "Draw" shots are those where the bowl is rolled to a specific location without causing too much disturbance of bowls already in the head. For a right-handed bowler, "forehand draw" or "finger peg" is initially aimed to the right of the jack, and curves in to the left. The same bowler can deliver a "backhand draw" or "thumb peg" by turning the bowl over in his hand and curving it the opposite way, from left to right. In both cases, the bowl is rolled as close to the jack as possible, unless tactics demand otherwise. A "drive" or "fire" or "strike" involves bowling with force with the aim of knocking either the jack or a specific bowl out of play - and with the drive's speed, there is virtually no noticeable (or, at least, much less) curve on the shot. An "upshot" or "yard on" shot involves delivering the bowl with an extra degree of weight (often referred to as "controlled" weight or "rambler"), enough to displace the jack or disturb other bowls in the head without killing the end. A "block" shot is one that is intentionally placed short to defend from a drive or to stop an oppositions draw shot. The challenge in all these shots is to be able to adjust line and length accordingly, the faster the delivery, the narrower the line or "green".

Variations of play

Particularly in team competition there can be a large number of bowls on the green towards the conclusion of the end, and this gives rise to complex tactics. Teams "holding shot" with the closest bowl will often make their subsequent shots not with the goal of placing the bowl near the jack, but in positions to make it difficult for opponents to get their bowls into the head, or to places where the jack might be deflected to if the opponent attempts to disturb the head.

Edgworth Bowling Green
A crown green at Edgworth, Lancashire

There are many different ways to set up the game. Crown Green Bowling utilises the entire green. A player can send the jack anywhere on the green in this game and the green itself is more akin to a golf green, with lots of undulation. It is only played with two woods each, ahd the jack also has a bias and is only slightly smaller than the woods. At the amateur level it is usual for several ends to be played simultaneously on one green. If two moving woods meet, both are taken back and the shots replayed. If a moving wood strikes a stationary wood or jack from another end, it is again taken back and replayed, but the bowl struck is replaced where contact took place. The game is played usually to 21-up in Singles and Doubles format with some competitions playing to 31-up. The Panel (Professional Crown Green Bowls) is played at the Red Lion, Westhoughton daily and is played to 41-up with greenside betting throughout play.

Singles, triples and fours and Australian pairs are some ways the game can be played. In singles, two people play against each other and the first to reach 21, 25 or 31 shots (as decided by the controlling body) is the winner. In one variation of singles play, each player uses two bowls only and the game is played over 21 ends. A player concedes the game before the 21st end if the score difference is such that it is impossible to draw equal or win within the 21 ends. If the score is equal after 21 ends, an extra end is played to decide the winner. An additional scoring method is set play. This comprises two sets over nine ends. Should a player win a set each, they then play a further 3 ends that will decide the winner.

Pairs allows both people on a team to play Skip and Lead. The lead throws two bowls, the skip delivers two, then the lead delivers his remaining two, the skip then delivers his remaining two bowls. Each end, the leads and skips switch positions. This is played over 21 ends or sets play. Triples is with three players while Fours is with four players in each team and is played over 21 ends.

Another pairs variation is 242 pairs (also known as Australian Pairs). In the first end of the game the A players lead off with 2 bowls each, then the B players play 4 bowls each, before the A players complete the end with their final 2 bowls. The A players act as lead and skip in the same end. In the second end the roles are reversed with the A players being in the middle. This alternating pattern continues through the game which is typically over 15 ends.

Short Mat Bowls is an all-year sport unaffected by weather conditions and it does not require a permanent location as the rink mats can be rolled up and stowed away. This makes it particularly appropriate for small communities as it can be played in village halls, schools, sports and social clubs.

Bowls are played by the blind and paraplegic. Blind bowlers are extremely skilful. A string is run out down the centre of the lane & wherever the jack lands it is moved across to the string and the length is called out by a sighted marker, when the woods are sent the distance from the jack is called out, in yards, feet and inches-the position in relation to the jack is given using the clock, 12.00 is behind the jack.[6]

Tra bowls

Trabol
A bowls tra with bowls and spectator seats next to it.

In the province of West-Flanders (and surrounding regions), tra bowls is the most popular variation of bowls. As opposed to playing it on a flat or uneven terrain, the terrain is made smooth but hollow (tra just means "hollow road" in Flemish). The hollow road causes the path to be curving even more.

The balls are biased in the same way as the lawn bowls balls but with a diameter of about 20 cm, a thickness of 12 cm and a weight of about 2 kg, they are a bit bigger than usual bowls. The target is an unmovable feather or metal plate on the ground, instead of a small ball. The length of the tra is about 18 m.

The scoring is also different, as a point is awarded for every shot that brings the ball closer to the target than any opponent's ball. This causes pure blocking strategies to be less effective.[7]

In 1972, the West-Flemish tra bowls federation was founded to uniform the local differing rules and to organise a match calendar. Meanwhile, they also organise championships and tournaments.[8]

Competitions

Merewether BC
Merewether Bowling Club, Newcastle, New South Wales
Provincial juiors entry form 007
The Alberta Male Junior Champion for 2007 at Royal Lawn Bowling Club in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

There is a World Indoor Bowls Championships and also World Bowls Events.

Bowls is one of the "core sports" that must be included at each edition of the Commonwealth Games. With the exception of the 1966 Games, the sport has been included in all Games since their inception in 1930. Glasgow, Scotland hosted the 2014 Commonwealth Games, with Jo Edwards (New Zealand) and Darren Burnett (Scotland) winning the singles gold medals.

In popular culture

  • Blackball – a 2003 comedy film about a young bowls player, based upon Griff Sanders.[9]
  • Crackerjack – a 2002 Australian comedy film about a wisecracking layabout who joins a lawn bowls club in order to be allowed to use a free parking spot but is forced to play bowls with the much older crowd when the club enters financial difficulty.
  • Outrageous Fortune - bowls is referenced in Series or Season 1, episode 6, and is briefly shown being played in Series 1, episode 7 of this Kiwi comedy-drama show.

See also

References

  1. ^ "Florilegium urbanum - Introduction - FitzStephen's Description of London". users.trytel.com. Retrieved 13 November 2017.
  2. ^ "Southampton Old Bowling Green, Southampton, England". BBC. Retrieved 6 January 2009.
  3. ^ "Playing at Bowls". www.greydragon.org. Retrieved 13 November 2017.
  4. ^ Australian Broadcasting Corporation's Radio National Ockham's Razor, first broadcast 6 June 2010.
  5. ^ "Laws of the Sport of Bowls (2011, Crystal Mark Second Edition), World Bowls". World Bowls. Archived from the original on 9 April 2011. Retrieved 1 April 2011.
  6. ^ "Blind Bowling Explained - RBBG". www.rbbg.co.uk. Retrieved 12 November 2017.
  7. ^ http://www.vlas.be/vlaspdf/infofolders/trabol.pdf Tra bowls information brochure
  8. ^ http://www.westvlaamsetrabolders.be Website of the West-Flemish tra bowls federation
  9. ^ "From bowling green to silver screen". BBC News. 28 August 2003. Retrieved 4 May 2008.

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Bowls" . Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.

External links

ArenaBowl

The ArenaBowl is the Arena Football League's championship game. From 1987 to 2004, the ArenaBowl was hosted by either the team with the better regular-season record or the higher seeding in the playoffs. From ArenaBowl XIX in 2005 until ArenaBowl XXII in 2008, the game was played at a neutral site. When the AFL returned from a bankruptcy-induced hiatus in 2010, the original format was used for this and the next season; for 2012 and 2013, the game returned to being played at a neutral site. In 2014, it was announced that the ArenaBowl would return to the format in which the higher-seeded team would host the game. However, in 2018, the game will now be hosted at the site of the participating team with highest average attendance during the regular season.

Bowl

A bowl is a round dish or container typically used to prepare and serve food. The interior of a bowl is characteristically shaped like a spherical cap, with the edges and the bottom forming a seamless curve. This makes bowls especially suited for holding liquids and loose food, as the contents of the bowl are naturally concentrated in its center by the force of gravity. The exterior of a bowl is most often round, but can be of any shape, including rectangular.

The size of bowls varies from small bowls used to hold a single serving of food to large bowls, such as punch bowls or salad bowls, that are often used to hold or store more than one portion of food. There is some overlap between bowls, cups and plates. Very small bowls, such as the tea bowl, are often called cups, while plates with especially deep wells are often called bowls.

Bowl game

In North America, a bowl game is one of a number of post-season college football games that are primarily played by teams belonging to the NCAA's Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS). For most of its history, the Division I Bowl Subdivision had avoided using a playoff tournament to determine an annual national champion, which was instead traditionally determined by a vote of sports writers and other non-players. In place of such a playoff, various cities across the United States developed their own regional festivals featuring post-season college football games. Prior to 2002, bowl game statistics were not included in players' career totals and the games were mostly considered to be exhibition games involving a payout to participating teams. Despite attempts to establish a permanent system to determine the FBS national champion on the field (such as the Bowl Coalition from 1992 to 1994, the Bowl Alliance from 1995 to 1997, the Bowl Championship Series from 1998 to 2013, and the College Football Playoff from 2014 to the present), various bowl games continue to be held because of the vested economic interests entrenched in them.

Bowl games originally featured the very best teams in college football, with strict bowl eligibility requirements for teams to receive an invitation to a bowl game in a particular year; as of 1971, there were only 10 team-competitive (as compared to all-star) bowl games. The number of bowl games has grown, reaching 20 games by the 1997 season, then rapidly expanding beyond 30 games by the 2006 season and 40 team-competitive games (not including the College Football Playoff National Championship) by the 2015 season. The increase in bowl games has necessitated a significant easing of the NCAA bowl eligibility rules, since reduced to allow teams with non-winning 6–6 records (numerous teams since 2002 season) and even losing 5–6 and 5–7 seasons (10 teams since the 2001 season) to fill some of the many available bowl slots.

The term "bowl" originated from the Rose Bowl stadium, site of the first post-season college football games. The Rose Bowl Stadium, in turn, takes its name and bowl-shaped design from the Yale Bowl, the prototype of many football stadiums in the United States. The term has since become almost synonymous with any major American football event, generally collegiate football with some significant exceptions. Two examples are the Egg Bowl, the name of the annual matchup between the Mississippi State Bulldogs and the Ole Miss Rebels, and the Iron Bowl, a nickname given to the annual game between the Alabama Crimson Tide and the Auburn Tigers. In professional football, the names of the National Football League (NFL)'s "Super Bowl" and "Pro Bowl" are references to college football bowl games.

The use of the term has crossed over into professional and collegiate Canadian football. A notable example is the annual Banjo Bowl between the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and Saskatchewan Roughriders of the Canadian Football League (CFL). U Sports plays two semi-final "bowl games" before the Vanier Cup national championship game, the Uteck Bowl and the Mitchell Bowl. The matchups are determined on a conference rotation basis, with the Uteck Bowl being played at the easternmost host team, while the Mitchell is at the westernmost host team.

Bowling

This article is about bowling in general.

For specific types of bowling, see Ten-pin bowling, Duckpin bowling, Candlepin bowling, Nine-pin bowling, and Five-pin bowling.

For other uses of the term, see Bowling (disambiguation)

Bowling is a target sport and recreational activity in which a player rolls or throws a bowling ball toward pins (in pin bowling) or another target (in target bowling).

In pin bowling, the goal is to knock over pins at the end of a lane, with either two or three balls per frame allowed to knock down all pins. A strike is achieved when all the pins are knocked down on the first roll, and a spare is achieved if all the pins are knocked over on a second roll (or, if applicable, on a third roll).

Lanes have wood or synthetic surfaces onto which protective lubricating oil is applied in different specified oil patterns that vary ball path characteristics. Common types of pin bowling include ten-pin, candlepin, duckpin, nine-pin, and five-pin bowling.

In target bowling, the aim is usually to get the ball as close to a mark as possible. The surface in target bowling may be grass, gravel, or synthetic. Bowls, skittles, kegel, bocce, carpet bowls, pétanque, and boules may have both indoor and outdoor varieties.

Bowling is played by 100 million people in more than 90 countries (including 70 million in the United States), and is the subject of many video games.

In the U.S. and Canada, the term bowling usually refers to ten-pin bowling, whereas in the U.K. and Commonwealth countries the term often denotes lawn bowls.

Goldfish

The goldfish (Carassius auratus) is a freshwater fish in the family Cyprinidae of order Cypriniformes. It is one of the most commonly kept aquarium fish.

A relatively small member of the carp family (which also includes the Prussian carp and the crucian carp), the goldfish is native to East Asia. It was first selectively bred in Ancient China more than a thousand years ago, and several distinct breeds have since been developed. Goldfish breeds vary greatly in size, body shape, fin configuration and colouration (various combinations of white, yellow, orange, red, brown, and black are known).

Googly

In cricket, a googly is a type of deceptive delivery bowled by a right-arm leg spin bowler. In Australia, it is occasionally referred to as a wrong'un, Bosie or Bosey, the last two eponyms in honour of its inventor Bernard Bosanquet. A leg spin bowler bowls in a leg spin way but it goes in the off spin direction.

Jo Edwards

Joanna Edwards (born 5 February 1970) is a New Zealand international lawn bowls competitor. She has won two world titles and three Commonwealth Games gold medals.

Lawn bowls at the 2010 Commonwealth Games

Lawn bowls at the 2010 Commonwealth Games was held at the Yamuna Sports Complex. The events were held from 4 to 13 October 2010.

Lawn bowls at the 2018 Commonwealth Games

Lawn bowls at the 2018 Commonwealth Games was held at the Broadbeach Bowls Club in the Gold Coast, Australia from April 5 to 13.Lawn bowls is one of ten core sports at the Commonwealth Games and has been continuously held at every Games since the 1930 British Empire Games, with the exception of the 1966 British Empire and Commonwealth Games in Kingston, Jamaica. A total of four events per gender were contested, along with two open para-sport events, which meant a total of ten medal events were contested.

List of Super Bowl champions

The Super Bowl is the annual American football game that determines the champion of the National Football League (NFL). The game culminates a season that begins in the previous calendar year, and is the conclusion of the NFL playoffs. The winner receives the Vince Lombardi Trophy. The contest is held in an American city, chosen three to four years beforehand, usually at warm-weather sites or domed stadiums. Since January 1971, the winner of the American Football Conference (AFC) Championship Game has faced the winner of the National Football Conference (NFC) Championship Game in the culmination of the NFL playoffs.

Before the 1970 merger between the American Football League (AFL) and the National Football League (NFL), the two leagues met in four such contests. The first two were marketed as the "AFL–NFL World Championship Game", but were also casually referred to as "the Super Bowl game" during the television broadcast. Super Bowl III in January 1969 was the first such game that carried the "Super Bowl" moniker in official marketing; the names "Super Bowl I" and "Super Bowl II" were retroactively applied to the first two games. The NFC/NFL leads in Super Bowl wins with 27, while the AFC/AFL has won 26. 20 franchises, including teams that have relocated to another city, have won the Super Bowl.The New England Patriots (6–5) and Pittsburgh Steelers (6–2) have won the most Super Bowls with six championships, while the Dallas Cowboys (5–3) and the San Francisco 49ers (5–1) have five wins. New England has the most Super Bowl appearances with 11, while the Buffalo Bills (0–4) have the most consecutive appearances with four (all losses) from 1990 to 1993. The Miami Dolphins (1971–1973) and New England Patriots (2016–2018) are the only other teams to have at least three consecutive appearances. The Denver Broncos (3–5) and Patriots have each lost a record five Super Bowls. The Minnesota Vikings (0–4) and the Bills have lost four. The record for consecutive wins is two and is shared by seven franchises: the Green Bay Packers (1966–1967), the Miami Dolphins (1972–1973), the Pittsburgh Steelers (1974–1975 and 1978–1979, the only team to accomplish this feat twice and the only team with four wins in six consecutive seasons), the San Francisco 49ers (1988–1989), the Dallas Cowboys (1992–1993), the Denver Broncos (1997–1998), and the New England Patriots (2003–2004). Among those, Dallas (1992–1993; 1995) and New England (2001; 2003–2004) are the only teams to win three out of four consecutive Super Bowls. The 1972 Dolphins capped off the only perfect season in NFL history with their victory in Super Bowl VII. The only team with multiple Super Bowl appearances and no losses is the Baltimore Ravens, who in winning Super Bowl XLVII defeated and replaced the 49ers in that position. Four current NFL teams have never appeared in a Super Bowl, including franchise relocations and renaming: the Cleveland Browns, Detroit Lions, Jacksonville Jaguars, and Houston Texans, though both the Browns (1950, 1954, 1955, 1964) and Lions (1935, 1952, 1953, 1957) had won NFL Championship Games prior to the creation of the Super Bowl in the 1966 season.

Pro Bowl

The Pro Bowl is the all-star game of the National Football League (NFL). From the merger with the rival American Football League (AFL) in 1970 up through 2013 and since 2017, it is officially called the AFC–NFC Pro Bowl, matching the top players in the American Football Conference (AFC) against those in the National Football Conference (NFC). From 2014 through 2016, the NFL experimented with an unconferenced format, where the teams were selected by two honorary team captains (who are each in the Hall of Fame), instead of selecting players from each conference. The players were picked in a televised "schoolyard pick" prior to the game.Unlike most major sports leagues, which hold their all-star games roughly midway through their regular seasons, the Pro Bowl is played around the end of the NFL season. The first official Pro Bowl was played in January 1951, three weeks after the 1950 NFL Championship Game (between 1939 and 1942, the NFL experimented with all-star games pitting the league's champion against a team of all-stars). Between 1970 and 2009, the Pro Bowl was usually held the weekend after the Super Bowl. Since 2010, it has been played the weekend before the Super Bowl. Players from the two teams competing in the Super Bowl do not participate.

For years, the game has suffered from lack of interest due to perceived low quality, with observers and commentators expressing their disfavor with it in its current state. It draws lower TV ratings than regular season NFL games, although the game draws similar ratings to other major all-star games, such as the Major League Baseball All-Star Game. However, the biggest concern of teams is to avoid injuries to the star players. The Associated Press wrote that players in the 2012 game were "hitting each other as though they were having a pillow fight".Between 1980 and 2016, the game was played at Aloha Stadium in Hawaii except for two years (2010 and 2015). On June 1, 2016, the NFL announced that they reached a multi-year deal to move the game to Orlando, Florida as part of the league's ongoing efforts to make the game more relevant.

Richard Girvan

Richard Anthony Girvan (born 30 December 1973) in Auckland is a New Zealand international lawn bowler.

Shannon McIlroy

Shannon McIlroy (born 5 January 1987) is a New Zealand international lawn bowler.

Standing bell

A standing bell or resting bell is an inverted bell, supported from below with the rim uppermost. Such bells are normally bowl-shaped, and exist in a wide range of sizes, from a few centimetres to a metre in diameter. They are often played by striking, but some—known as singing bowls—may also be played by rotating a mallet around the outside rim to produce a sustained musical note.

Struck bowls are used in some Buddhist religious practices to accompany periods of meditation and chanting. Struck and singing bowls are widely used for music making, meditation and relaxation, as well for personal spirituality. They have become popular with music therapists, sound healers and yoga practitioners.

Standing bells originated in China. An early form called nao took the shape of a stemmed goblet, mounted with rim uppermost, and struck on the outside with a mallet. The manufacture and use of bowls specifically for 'singing' is believed to be a modern phenomenon. Bowls that were capable of singing began to be imported to the West from around the early 1970s. Since then they have become a popular instrument in the US-originating new-age genre often marketed as 'Tibetan music'.

Super Bowl

The Super Bowl is the annual championship game of the National Football League (NFL) where the champion of the National Football Conference (NFC) competes against the champion of the American Football Conference (AFC). The game is the culmination of a regular season that begins in the late summer of the previous calendar year. Normally, Roman numerals are used to identify each game, rather than the year in which it is held. For example, Super Bowl I was played on January 15, 1967, following the 1966 regular season. The sole exception to this naming convention tradition occurred with Super Bowl 50, which was played on February 7, 2016, following the 2015 regular season, and the following year, the nomenclature returned to Roman numerals for Super Bowl LI, following the 2016 regular season. The upcoming Super Bowl is Super Bowl LIV, scheduled for February 2, 2020, following the 2019 regular season.

The game was created as a part of the merger agreement between the NFL and its then-rival, the American Football League (AFL). It was agreed that the two's champion teams would play in the AFL–NFL World Championship Game until the merger was to officially begin in 1970. After the merger, each league was re-designated as a "conference", and the game has since been played between the conference champions to determine the NFL's league champion. Currently, the National Football Conference leads the league with 27 wins to 26 wins for the American Football Conference. The Pittsburgh Steelers and the New England Patriots have the most Super Bowl championship titles, with six. The New England Patriots have the most Super Bowl appearances, with eleven. Tom Brady has six Super Bowl rings, which is the record for the most rings won by a single player.

The day on which the Super Bowl is played, now considered by some as an unofficial American national holiday, is called "Super Bowl Sunday". It is the second-largest day for U.S. food consumption, after Thanksgiving Day. In addition, the Super Bowl has frequently been the most-watched American television broadcast of the year; the seven most-watched broadcasts in U.S. television history are Super Bowls. In 2015, Super Bowl XLIX became the most-watched American television program in history with an average audience of 114.4 million viewers, the fifth time in six years the game had set a record, starting with Super Bowl XLIV, which itself had taken over the number-one spot held for 27 years by the final episode of M*A*S*H. The Super Bowl is also among the most-watched sporting events in the world, almost all audiences being North American, and is second to the UEFA Champions League final as the most watched annual sporting event worldwide.The NFL restricts the use of its "Super Bowl" trademark; it is frequently called the Big Game or other generic terms by non-sponsoring corporations. Because of the high viewership, commercial airtime during the Super Bowl broadcast is the most expensive of the year, leading to companies regularly developing their most expensive advertisements for this broadcast. As a result, watching and discussing the broadcast's commercials has become a significant aspect of the event. In addition, popular singers and musicians including Mariah Carey, Michael Jackson, Madonna, Prince, Justin Timberlake, Beyoncé, Janet Jackson, Paul McCartney, The Rolling Stones, The Who, Whitney Houston, and Lady Gaga have performed during the event's pre-game and halftime ceremonies.

Underarm bowling

In cricket, underarm bowling is as old as the sport itself. Until the introduction of the roundarm style in the first half of the 19th century, bowling was performed in the same way as in bowls, the ball being delivered with the hand below the waist. Bowls may well be an older game than cricket and it is possible (although unlikely) that cricket was derived from bowls by the intervention of a batsman trying to stop the ball reaching its target by hitting it away, though bowling per se continued as in bowls.

Val Smith

Valerie Christine Smith (born 29 July 1965) is an international lawn bowler from New Zealand.

World Bowls Championship

The World Bowls Championship is the premier world bowls competition between national bowls organisations. The premier indoor event is the World Indoor Bowls Championships listed separately and is organised by the World Bowls Tour.

World Indoor Bowls Championships

The World Indoor Bowls Championship was first held in 1979 at Coatbridge in Scotland for men's singles only. The event was sponsored by Embassy in the early years and grew in stature.

In 1988 the venue changed to Alexandra Palace and one year later Churchill Insurance took over the sponsorship when the championships were held at Preston Guild Hall.

The Midland Bank and SAGA were two more sponsors during the Preston era.

In 1999 Potters Holidays came in to take over the sponsorship and the event moved to Potters Resort in Hopton-on-Sea, where it is still held today. The BBC also show live coverage of the championships during the last week which includes all four competition finals.The men's pairs started in 1986, the women's singles in 1988 and the mixed pairs in 2004. Both the men's singles and men's pairs changed to open singles and open pairs following the rule change which allowed women to compete in them. Alex Marshall from Scotland has won the singles event a record six times. Fellow Scot Paul Foster is one wins behind with five successes.

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