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Tournament Regulations


It should be noted that there has never been a code of law that has achieved such perfection that all possibilities are covered.

The Southampton Open Bowls Tournament, here in after referred to as the ‘committee’, hopes all competitors playing in this event do so

on the understanding that where no specific regulation applies to the situation that common sense and good sportsmanship will prevail.



All competitions will, as far as possible, be conducted under the present BOWLS ENGLAND laws. Any deviation will be recognised as

having been made to bring about a satisfactory conclusion to the tournament.



There are six main competitions: men’s singles, men’s pairs, men’s triples, ladies’ singles, ladies’ pairs and ladies’ triples.

The singles and pairs competitions will consist of four bowls for each player – 21 shots and 21 ends respectively. The triples events will

be three bowls per player – 18 ends. Two trial ends, two bowls only per player will be allowed in all competitions. Subject to the tournament

schedule running to plan, the committee may organise an open consolation pairs from Thursday onwards. The number of ends for this

competition will be determined before each round takes place. NB. Minimum of 8 & maximum of 32 entries for this competition.



The committee reserves the right to reduce the number of ends or points per game as and when it is thought necessary: e.g. due to bad




When the green steward and or green keeper decide that play cannot continue on a green or rink because of the weather and there is no

likelihood of early resumption, the following rule shall apply: The player/team having scored the most shots at the cessation of play shall be

declared the winner(s). If the scores are tied then the player/team winning the most ends will be the winner(s). If both scores and winning

ends are tied, then the outcome will then be determined on the toss of a coin.


The players in the first match, one of who shall be named in the official competitor list held by the secretary will constitute the team.

Each team will be entitled to one and the same substitute throughout the tournament. Substitutes are not allowed in the singles competitions.

In order to meet a special situation, e.g. a player in a team becomes ill and cannot continue, a second substitute, where the original cannot

be contacted, can be used in order the team can continue play in that match only. Thereafter the team must revert to the original substitute

in any further matches. The second substitute must be a person who has not already played in that competition.



Start times for play are listed in the programme. A competitor/team will be allowed a maximum of 12 minutes thereafter to start play

otherwise their opponent(s) may claim the match. Any further delay can only be accepted with the agreement of both singles players or in

team matches, the two skips, and the duty green steward. The latter has the authority to reduce the number of ends/points to bring a

satisfactory conclusion to the match. It may be due to bad weather etc that the scheduled start times have to be altered. The onus is upon

the competitor(s) to regularly check with the green steward for any changes to the scheduled start times.



If the tournament is to come to a satisfactory conclusion, then every competitor must co-operate. Constant visits to the ‘head’ are

unnecessary and unacceptable. Competitors seen to be doing this by the green steward or umpire will be reminded once only. Further

infringements will amount to the match being stopped and the opponent(s) being awarded the game. The committee have resisted imposing

time limits that are evident in a number of other tournaments and are subject to criticism.



Competitors are required to wear suitable white tailored shirts and greys below the waist from Monday to Wednesday. Some clubs require

ties to be worn as part of their club rules please check with the green steward. From Thursday, onwards the dress is all whites. Markers

are also asked to wear whites for the sake of uniformity. Suitable club or team coloured tailored shirts (or uniforms) may be worn

throughout the week providing all team members wear the same club or team shirt (or uniform) and that the shirts do not display any

club advertising other than the current club sponsors. Jeans and non-tailored shorts are prohibited.



In the event of a dispute over the laws of the game which cannot be resolved by the players or the umpire, then in his absence the green

steward shall be called. The decision made shall be final even if at a later stage, it is found to be incorrect.


Like most other tournaments, finding sufficient markers for singles matches is extremely difficult. Players must accept that markers are

unpaid volunteers. Markers will maintain the scorecard and answer questions to the best of their ability from the player who is ‘in possession

of the mat’. The onus is on the player to judge whether the opinion is correct or otherwise. Queries beyond the markers opinion should be

addressed to the umpire or the green steward and that decision shall be final irrespective of the fact that it was later discovered to be




At the end of the match the scorecards shall be signed by both players in singles matches and by both skips in team matches. It is the

winning player/team’s responsibility to ensure that the scorecard is then handed in to the green steward.



Tournament play is scheduled to finish at 6.00pm on finals day. However, dispensation may be given if a player is involved in more than

one final. No player will be permitted to play in more than two finals. If a player is involved in more than two finals, then they will find a

legal substitute in either the pairs or the triples. For the benefit of spectators, every effort is made to ensure timings for the finals are as

they are scheduled in the programme. Nevertheless, when players are involved in more than one final the committee will regard the player

concerned as more important.



Each year the committee has the onerous task of notifying opponents and markers of late withdrawals. Any entrant withdrawing from the

singles competition, or the whole team withdrawing from one or other of the competitions before the tournament commences may be

replaced by a player or team not previously entered in that competition. The replacements shall be taken from a waiting list of people, in

strict rotation, who were too late to enter the tournament proper and have notified the tournament secretary of their desire to be placed on

the waiting list. Players who have byes will not be affected by this regulation and no replacements will be entered after the preliminary or,

as the case may be, the first round of that competition has taken place. e.g. a player or team who plays the first match and then

withdraws after winning cannot be replaced.



Perpetual trophies presented to all finalists will always remain the property of the committee. They are valuable and subject to insurance.

Winners will be allowed to retain them for one year provided they sign an indemnity before leaving the tournament on finals day.

For insurance purposes, trophies are not allowed to be taken out of the British Isles. Engraving of these trophies must be carried out by the

engravers nominated on the indemnity form. Any other engraving must be carried out by a professional engraver and at the holder’s own

expense. All trophies must be personally returned to the tournament assistant secretary before 1st July of each year, or at another time

agreed with him.


If you have a complaint about the tournament please address it immediately to a committee member. If you are still dissatisfied then your

complaint must be in writing and sent to the tournament secretary, within 14 days of the tournament ending. Your complaint will be brought

to the attention of the committee and you will receive our response as soon as possible after a decision has been reached.



Competitors entering the tournament do so on the understanding that any personal injury, damage or loss of property will not be subject to

compensation by the tournament itself or any of the host clubs.



All venues utilised in the tournament are on loan. Competitors are expected to abide by the club rules. Such rules are not always evident.

If in doubt, please ask the duty green steward as it will save embarrassment all round.



The committee requires every competitor to maintain a courteous standard of personal conduct in keeping with the high traditions of playing

the game of bowls. Any person seen by a green steward or umpire to be disturbing the opposition or adjoining rink(s) of players through

conduct which could be described as unbecoming and should have been avoided, will be told to leave the green and disqualified from taking

part in any other tournament competitions during the week. Team member(s) will also be disqualified from taking any further part in that

particular competition. The committee reserves the right to refuse entry into future tournaments by the offending player(s) sine die.



The tournament is very dependent on sponsorship and as a condition of entry all competitors, whenever required to do so, MUST during

play use the stickers on their bowls that have been provided by the committee to advertise our sponsors.



These regulations are merely a guide for competitors. The committee reserves the right to alter, amend or vary the regulations at any time.

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