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Fakenham bowlers in England action

PUBLISHED: 11:33 03 July 2008 | UPDATED: 10:23 07 July 2010

Jamie Chestney, Norfolk's exciting young prospect from the Fakenham Gallow indoor club, shrugged his shoulders as he assessed his first series as an England skip, and agreed it was a case of putting it all down to experience.

Jamie Chestney, Norfolk's exciting young prospect from the Fakenham Gallow indoor club, shrugged his shoulders as he assessed his first series as an England skip, and agreed it was a case of putting it all down to experience.

In the British Championships, Chestney's quartet - with Craig Docherty, Ian Jenkins and Billy Jackson at the front end, had competed well, winning one match, 21-17, losing another by the same score, and going down narrowly against Wales, 22-20.

Fakenham's Mervyn King was also involved in the bowls international.

“Overall, Scotland deserved to win the series,” said the 20-year-old Chestney, after the Scots had lowered England's colours, 138-110, in the final session. “But I enjoyed it, and hope I will be back for more.”

John Ottaway, leading as always, helped Stephen Farish to an 18-13 win over Wales, and a 17-16 win over Scotland, while King, playing third to Robert Newman, lost by five to Wales, but chalked up a 22-15 win against Scotland.

After beating Ireland comfortably in the opening match, England, the defending champions, collapsed badly against Wales, and were always under the cosh against Scotland, who won the title for the first time since 2004.

Ironically, one of Scotland's stars was Gary Smith, originally from Kent, who played for England from 1982 until 2001, but took up residence in Scotland when he was appointed as CEO of World Bowls Limited.

After giving up bowls for a couple of years, he is now playing out of Linlithgow, but his selection for Scotland was controversial.

It certainly caused quite a stir on the bowls websites, and the Scottish selectors came in for heavy criticism for picking an Englishman - especially one who so passionately espoused England's cause for so long.

“I took some stick, but had no trouble adjusting,” said Smith. “The players accepted me, and it's just a game of bowls after all. It was great to return to the international scene after a seven-year break.”

Earlier, England won the British pairs, fours and under-25 singles titles, while Sandy Wotherspoon, a Scot, won the singles, and Jersey took the triples.

Final standings: 1 Scotland 6pts (+53 shots), 2 Wales 2pts (-3 shots), 3 England 2pts (-7 shots), 4 Ireland (2pts (-43 shots).

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