Silksworth star Bolt retains England skip’s berth for Home Internationals

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Bowls England have made only two changes to the England team that won this year’s Home International series for next season’s event at Llandrindrod Wells, Wales, on Saturday and Sunday, July 2-3.

There was good news for Silksworth’s David Bolt.

After being surprisingly omitted from the trial squad, it was thought that Bolt’s run in the team had come to an abrupt end, however the Durham star has retained his skip’s berth for another series and will hopefully be back to full fitness by then.

Northumberland’s Josh Minto is the only new cap, while there is a recall for Devon’s Lee Haywood.

England team: Steve Mitchinson (Essex), John McGuinness (Buckinghamshire), David Hubbard (Sussex) & Robert Newman (Berkshire); Ben Render (Yorkshire), Andrew Knapper (Berkshire), Tom Millership (Warwickshire) & Jamie Walker (Northamptonshire); Lee Haywood (Devon), Louis Ridout (Devon), Chris Yeomans (Northumberland) & David Bolt (Durham); Josh Minto (Northumberland), Andrew Walters (Worcestershire), Graham Shadwell (Wiltshire) & Stephen Farish (Cumbria); John Rednall (Suffolk), Matthew Marchant (Hampshire), Robert Paxton (Devon) & Richard Catton (Cambridgeshire); Ashley Clipston (Derbyshire), Mark Read (Cornwall), Chris Gale (Lancashire) & Sam Tolchard (Devon)

Travelling reserves: Ian Lesley (Devon) & Ed Morris (Essex)

Non-travelling reserves: Shaun McCaughan (Kent), Taylor Monk (Kent), Lloyd Sabatini (Berkshire) & Andrew Squire (Essex)

The last outdoor competition, the Houghton Feast, starts today at Houghton Town. The popular singles event has attracted 44 entries and will conclude on October 3, with the final due to take place at 3.30pm.

The Veterans’ Inter-Club League continues this week with a local derby as Houghton entertain Sunderland A on Thursday (12.30pm), with teams already selected.

Houghton :D Simpson, F Sanderson, T Joicey, D Sim, M Baker, J Sutherland, F Fletcher, D Wright, C Wallace, I Whorton, J Swinney, F Johnson

Sunderland A: A Baker, F Knubley, M Davis, W Ferry, P Collins, R Rollason, J Jones, T Jopling, M Wright, R Robson, R Robinson, R Graham. Reserves: M Carr, B Walsh, W Hearne, G Simpson

The Sunderland B team open up their campaign at Houghton as Hartlepool A are the visitors on Wednesday (12.30pm).

Sunderland B – A Grimes, A Wood, F Froud, R Jobling, G Brown, D Gowland, W Conway, W Roberts, P Thomson, R Usher, P Brickle, TW Todd

Houghton face Durham in the first round of the Over-60s double fours on October 23 (12.30pm). The Houghton team has already been selected.

At Houghton – S Barnes, K Waterson, J Sutherland, F Johnson. Reserves – C Wallace, R Thorpe

At Durham – J Doyle, R Johnson, F Fletcher, P Harding. Reserves – M.Baker

The various Durham County Champion of Champions draws have been made. With no Sunderland entries, local hopes rest on Houghton’s entries.

Singles – P Thomson (Houghton) v J Minto (Parks)

Pairs – F Froud (Houghton) v M Jones (Darlington)

Triples – C Larcombe (Ferryhill) v W Holmes (Houghton)

Fours – to be confirmed

Seniors singles – W Maddison (Shildon) v W Roberts (Houghton)

Seniors pairs – W Holmes (Houghton) v E Henry (Stanley)

Seniors triples – W Roberts (Houghton) v A Stewart (Park View)

Seniors fours – R Robinson (Houghton) v H Hall (Spennymoor)

With the indoor leagues underway at Houghto,n there are still a couple of vacancies – Tuesday 4.30pm Veterans Triples; Wednesday 4.30pm Mixed Triples and Sunday 10am Fours. Anyone interested should contact club secretary Margaret Nicholson for details.

There is a chance to watch International indoor bowls at Stanley this weekend, as they host the England v Wales Mixed Test match. Entry is £5 per day.

England squad: Lauren Copeland (Hartlepool), Zoe Eagles (York & District), Sarah Seymour (City of Ely), Perry Martin (Swale),Graham Smith (Spalding), Neil Smith (Westlecot)

Gateshead will again hold their popular Open Ladies three-bowl triples competition in November.