Norfolk start planning for bowls’ Middleton Cup defence

The outdoor bowls season gets under way at the beginning of May with the Norfolk teams in action on the first weekend as they build up to defending the Middleton Cup, which they won at Worthing in August.

The Middleton Cup campaign kicks off with an away trip to Huntingdonshire at Parkway BC (Peterborough) on Saturday, June 1 followed by another away tie against Northamptonshire at Kingsthorpe BC on Saturday, June 15.

The group qualification finishes with Norfolk entertaining Bedfordshire on Saturday, July 6 at Norfolk BC.

Ahead of this there are trial matches against Huntingdonshire in the Eastern Counties League and a match against Essex where manager Brian Taylor will be able to run the rule over the players prior to the Middleton Cup campaign. The teams selected for these matches are:

• Norfolk team v Huntingdonshire at Brampton Institute on Saturday, May 4 at 10.30am: Tom Baker (Wootton Park), Simon Elliott (Acle St Edmund), Charlie Boon (Norfolk BC), Ian Catchpole (Norfolk BC); Daniel Seabourne (Acle St Edmund), Robert Hadingham (Wortwell), Michael Rowbotham (Wootton Park), Steve Winter (Wootton Park); Mark Elliott (Acle St Edmund), Andy McNamara (Wootton Park), Richard Summers (Norfolk BC), Chris Willgress (Norfolk BC); Sam King ((Hunstanton EBA), Clive Derry ((County Arts), Daniel Noble (North Walsham), Jake Willgress (Norfolk BC); Ollie Allen (Wymondham Dell), Neil Moulton (Norfolk BC), Tony Seabourne (Acle St Edmund), Darren Rowsell (Acle St Edmund); Peter Bird (Cromer Marrams), Derek Talbot (Aldiss Park), Peter Cottee (Diss & District), Tony Dunton (Freethorpe)

• Norfolk team v Essex at Great Dunmow BC on Sunday, May 5 at 10.30am: John Ottaway (Wymondham Dell), James Segolo (County Arts), Paul Shackcloth (County Arts), Mervyn King (Hunstanton EBA); John Colcombe (Acle St Edmund), Peter Wilkinson (County Arts), Jake Willgress (Norfolk BC), Philip Barr (County Arts); George Tubby (Acle St Edmund), Justin Hudson (Wootton Park), Bernie Perrett (Norfolk BC), Andy Siely (Acle St Edmund); Max Harrison (Downham Market), Roger Guy (Wymondham Dell), Chris Gaul (Gissing), Steve Winter (Wootton Park); John Tufts (Norfolk BC), Tom Segolo (County Arts), Mark Riches (Hunstanton EBA), Wayne Willgress (Norfolk BC); Daniel Seabourne (Acle St Edmund), Liam Stevenson (Hunstanton), Mark Turner (County Arts), Ian Catchpole (Norfolk BC)