Starting in 2011 the first Bowling Arm Interstate Challenge was played between Victoria and New South Wales. This expanded to a larger interstate tournament in 2013 with the addition of South Australia. The event was held yearly after this with the addition of Queensland in 2016, Western Australia in 2017 as the “Sandgropers”, and Tasmania in 2018. The Challenge now has six states involved and is officially known as the “National Bowling Arm Sides Championships”.
Bowls Australia endorses the Arm Sides Championships by providing a “National Perpetual Trophy” for the winning state while the host state runs the event and provides Gold and Silver medals. The states also play for interstate Shields during the Championships. A State Representative Side consists of 15 players, plus three reserve, who form three teams of five. Format of play is Singles & Fours and Pairs & Triples played concurrently. This event is a mixed gender tournament with a minimum requirement of two female bowlers with one female player in every set of games played.
To be considered for selection to the Sandgroper State Arm Side players need to:
- Complete a Sandgroper Squad EOI form and send to Laurie Blurton (Sandgroper Coordinator – contact info is on the form)
- Laurie will send out practice information and track who is attending in order to form Game Play on practice days
- It is a requirement of selection that players are current and active Pennant Players at their home club.
- Attempt to participate at as many practices and events as possible. There are 4 events prior to Sandgroper Side Selection:
- January Armed Open Mandurah BC (event)
- February Sandgroper Squad Practice, Warnbro BC
- March Sandgroper Squad Practice, Warnbro BC
- May State Arm Singles Warnbro BC (event)
- The selection of the Sandgroper State Side is announced approximately 3 weeks after the May State Arm Championships
- After Side Selection is announced the following schedule continues for selected Side players only:
- June Sandgroper Side Practice, Warnbro BC (players measured for uniforms)
- July Sandgroper Side Practice, Warnbro BC
- August Mundaring v Sandgroper Side Shield Game (event) (uniforms delivered)
- September National Bowling Arm Sides Championships (event) (WA is meant to host 2021 at Warnbro BC – this is dependent on border closures being lifted)
The 2020 Nationals were cancelled (for the first time) due to Covid-19 travel and isolation restrictions. As a result, the event is rescheduled to be played in WA (also a first) in 2021 at Warnbro Bowling Club from September 6 to 10.
Laurie Blurton continues in the position of Coordinator of the WA Bowling Arm “Sandgropers” and would like interested players to fill in an updated 2021 Expression of Interest.
The EOI form needs to be returned to Laurie at firstname.lastname@example.org. Laurie can also be contacted on 0427 097 935.
2021 INFORMATION FOR ARMED BOWLERS IN WA:
- 2021 Timeline of Events (updated November 2020)
- Mandurah Armed Open (January 11, 2021)
- State Bowling Arm Championships (May 3 & 4 @ Warnbro – PDF Entry + Online Entry)
- National Bowling Arm Side Championships, Warnbro Bowling Club, Sept 6 – 10, 2021
WA HISTORY OF NATIONAL BOWLING ARM SIDE CHAMPIONSHIPS – WRAP UP ARTICLES:
2017 National Bowling Arm Sides Championships (Moama VIC)
2018 National Bowling Arm Side Championships (East Maitland NSW)
2019 National Bowling Arm Sides Championships (Tranmere SA)
2020 National Bowling Arm Side Championships (CANCELLED – COVID-19)
2021 National Bowling Arm Side Championships (Warnbro WA)