Acle bowls ace Seabourne keen to produce goods on big England Under-25s debut in Glasgow
- Credit: Nick Butcher
Teenage sensation Daniel Seabourne is counting down the days until he pulls on an England shirt again.
The Acle Indoor Bowls Club talent has been called into his country's under-25s squad for the first time despite being just 18 years of age. He is likely to be among the youngest players taking part in the British 'international series' event in Glasgow on February 14 and 15. But Seabourne is determined to show he belongs in such prestigious company.
The teen, known as Spike, said: 'I'll definitely be nervous when I first go out to play but I quite like playing under pressure, it gets the best out of me. It's always been my aim to represent our senior side and although that's a long way off I just hope to keep improving. It's amazing that I've been called up as I expected the trial to just be a good experience for me.
'At 18, I thought I had seven years to try and get into the under-25s. I've got in at the first attempt and now I want to try and stay in the team because there's no better feeling than representing England and I can't wait to do it again.'
Seabourne's last international appearance came in October, 2013, when he won the British Isles under-18 singles title in Dunfermline. That further enhanced his growing reputation in the sport following a high-profile success seventh months earlier.
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The then 16-year-old made a serious statement of his future intent by winning the Premier Threes Bowls title at Boston ahead of some of the major stars on the circuit. So he hopes to feel at home again alongside big names such as Jamie Walker – who as well as playing for the under-25s has also received full senior honours already.
'I'm definitely excited to be playing alongside someone like Jamie Walker,' said Seabourne, who first took to the rink when he was 12.
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'He's the national singles indoor champion and under-25s singles champion. That's the sort of quality I'll be playing with and up against. It can only boost your confidence.
'For me, I just want to play well and prove that I'm good enough to be there. Of course I want to win myself and help England win. We always do well at this event. So I hope to help continue that. There's a couple of reserves going with the squad so if anyone doesn't play well early on they could get dropped – which is something I don't want to happen to me.'
The Seabourne family will be cheering him on up in Scotland –including grandfather Mike who agreed to double whatever winnings his grandson sealed in Boston in March 2013 – expecting it to be some way short of the £1,000 top prize he walked away with.
Daniel's father Tony said: 'We're totally surprised. We didn't think this would come for three to four years, so it's a complete bonus. The under-18s and under-25s are poles apart and it's such an achievement. It's a big step and we're all extremely proud of Daniel for being selected.'
The international's mother, Clare, added: 'There's a lot of really good players in the under-25s who play for the seniors so this wasn't expected.
'It really is great for Daniel and we're all over the moon about it.'