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Simon Martin and Stephen Gibson in world title tilt

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Picture by Matt Mackey/Presseye.com
Presseye.com - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th July 2011.
Bangor open bowls competition at Ward Park, Bangor, Co. Down.
Open singles winner Simon Martin.

Picture by Matt Mackey/Presseye.com Presseye.com - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th July 2011. Bangor open bowls competition at Ward Park, Bangor, Co. Down. Open singles winner Simon Martin.

Picture by Matt Mackey/Presseye.com Presseye.com - Belfast - Northern Ireland - 16th July 2011. Bangor open bowls competition at Ward Park, Bangor, Co. Down. Open singles winner Simon Martin.

Simon Martin and Stephen Gibson head the Ireland challenge in the World Indoor Bowls Council men's singles championship that starts in Jersey tomorrow.

It's been 10 years since County Antrim's Stephen Moran became the first Irishman to parade the coveted trophy which adds a little bit of pressure on to the shoulders of the Belfast pair.

Martin, the current Irish title holder, has been handed a daunting challenge as he has been drawn in the same group as his former international team mate Jonathan Ross, now representing Scotland, Jersey's Thomas Greechan and the Isle of Man's Martin Paterson.

Ross is a regular in the blue shirt of Scotland, having moved to Paisley six years ago.

"It's a tough group," said Martin. "But there are no easy games at this level. It was a big thrill winning the Irish title for the first time back in January – this is now another step up.

"I'll be doing my best to make the knockout stage. Anything can happen after that."

Gibson is up against England's Perry Martin, Willem Lodewijky of the Netherlands and Steve Le Noury from Guernsey.

Meanwhile, Belfast's Briege Donnelly and Ann McKillop will feature in the women's championship.

McKillop has been drawn in the same section as two-time winner Julie Forrest (Scotland), Helen Greechan (Jersey) and Muriel Cain (Isle of Man).

Donnelly has a decent chance of emerging from a group containing Rebecca Field (England), Caroline De Graaff (Netherlands) and Heidi Le Noury (Guernsey).

Belfast Telegraph


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