It’s claimed the sport of Bowls was developed by the Egyptians, with the pastime spreading across the world while taking on a variety of forms, such as Bocce (Italian), Bolla (Saxon), and Boules (French). Bowls has been played in Britain since around 1300.
The most famous story in lawn bowls, true or not, concerns Sir Francis Drake, who was playing the game at Plymouth Hoe, when news came through that the Spanish Armada were fast approaching. His immortalised response, aparantly, was that "We still have time to finish the game and to thrash the Spaniards, too." He finished the match, but lost……….then took on the Armada…………….and won.
King Henry VIII also played bowls but banned the game for those who were not wealthy because he thought that traders, like bow-makers, spent too much time on leisure activities instead of concentrating on their trade!
Indoor Bowls is simply the indoor incarnation of Lawn Bowls, and it’s indoor bowls that will be contested in the Shetland Island Games.
The indoor idea was pioneered by William Macrae in the Drumdryan Drill Hall in 1888, with the first indoor club, Cystal Palace, formed in 1905 . Included in the orginal members was W.G.Grace, who’s fame of course came from his exploits in cricket.
The Shetland Games starts with the fours competitions, followed by singles and pairs. In each section, there will be a round-robin tournament, with the group winners meeting in semi-finals.