Scarborough's Jack beats five-time world champion

Scarborough ace bowler Jack Bird beat a five times world champion to take the British Isles Indoor Bowls Council’s singles crown.

By Sue Wilkinson
Thursday, 21st March 2019, 4:35 pm
Updated Thursday, 21st March 2019, 4:43 pm
Jack Bird with his silverware
Jack Bird with his silverware

The 22-year-old, who lives in Osgodby and went to George Pindar School, beat Scot Paul Foster after a three-day event at the Falcon Bowling Club in Chelmsford.

Foster was going for his third consecutive win in the tournament which sees the best of England, Scotland, Ireland, Wales, Guernsey and Jersey take on each other in a bout of singles rounds.

Bird was in the competition courtesy of him taking the England singles title last year.

But he was very much the underdog going into the final against Foster, who has won the Scottish singles title three years running.

“He was very much top dog. If he had won at Chelmsford that would have been another hat-trick for him,” said Bird.

“Fortunately, I managed to stop him.”

Bird bowled to a 21-14 victory over Foster, who is also a Commonwealth Gold medallist and ranked number four in the world.

As British Isles Indoor Bowls Council’s Men’s Singles Champion, he was presented with a trophy which will be engraved with his name and that he keeps for a year – and he was also presented with a permanent memento of his win.

Bird, who is a mechanic and works in South Cliff with his dad Adrian, started bowling aged seven, at Scarborough Indoor Bowls Club in North Bay.

He plays in the Scarborough and York leagues and has been selected for the England under 25 team.

He has a host of titles to his name including May championships, and has won the Under-18s Scarborough singles titles four times and been part of the the men’s fours winning team five years running.

He attended Sunday morning sessions for youngsters and the then coach Mike Preston spotted Jack’s potential.

“He said he was the most natural talent he had ever taught,” said Jack’s dad Adrian, who also plays indoor bowls.

Bird is also a member of Scarborough outdoor bowls club Borough based in Manor Road.

He will be playing for the first teams in both the Saturday and evening leagues when the season starts in a few weeks’ time.

Borough won the Saturday league one title last year.

The May Festival – held on the indoor rinks and outdoor greens of the centre – gets under way on Sunday May 5 and runs until Saturday May 10.