Flowfit Shropshire Senior Merit Preview

The Flowfit Shropshire Senior Merit is only one day away and it promises to be a great day of bowls action. There are four former winners, including three multiple winners and last year's, several county players desperate to win their first and about 15 players under 30 looking to make a name for themselves, as well as those who will be looking for a good run themselves. It's not all about the winning either, as the Semi Finalists will be progressing to the All England Finals in Wales, and this is what all players will be looking at to begin with. The king of the Merit this Millennium has qualified; Pete Farmer won it three times on the bounce from 2005 to 2007 and will be looking to win it for a fifth time. But he has a tough quarter which includes twice winner Alan Davidson, who has bounced back to form this season, and Darren Wellings, enjoying an excellent season so far, as well as Andy Duckett. The winner last year Rob Roden takes on Simon Rhodes first game, with another potential rematch against his uncle Rich Lawson, who he beat 1st round 20 last year, if they both win. However Rich Lawson takes on Paul Williams, a former big competition winner, winning the Meole Brace Open in 2005. Mark Shore will be looking to replicate his Dad's two triumphs in this competition in 1978 and 1987, while Mike Beer who be looking to do one better than his Dad did in 1965 when he reached the final. Andy Moss is another two time winner, and has been in great form this season only losing one game in the Flowfit Shropshire Premier Bowling League, so will be one that will go close, while Jamie King is a former Junior Waterloo Winner, and will be hoping to add to that triumph today. Wayne Rogers, who won the Meole Open in 2014, will be expected to win his Quarter and given that he has won his last 8 in the Premier League, although last year's Premier League winner Rob Burroughs could have a big say in that. Former homester George Williams will be hoping to use that to his advantage to go far, while family ties are put aside for cousins Martin Gaut and Stuart Clee who clash in the 1st round. Chris Stretch will be hoping that his competition successes in the Whitchurch League will help him go far today. As for the outsider of the day, Andy Stevens has only played one league game this season, and four games in total all year, so will be hard pressed to go far, especially given he plays Mike Beer first game. So get yourself down to Wem Sports and Social Club at 11 a.m. to watch some top quality bowls with the king of Shropshire bowls crowned. Entry is £2 with a fantastic 16 page programme compiled by Stuart Clee, it really is worth a read! There will be refreshments served.   Senior Merit Draw: 1. Wayne Rogers v Andy Wigginton 2. Stuart Clee v Martin Gaut 3. Kieran Buckley v George Williams 4. Ash Wellings v Rob Burroughs 5. Jamie King v Gary Beff 6. Chris Stretch v Ian McDonald 7. Andy Stevens v Mike Beer 8. Mark Selley v Andy Moss 9. Doug Edwards v Mark Shore 10. John Potter v Ian Gaut 11. Rich Lawson v Paul Williams 12. Rob Roden v Simon Rhodes 13. Paul Bradburne v Alan Davidson 14. Pete Farmer v Russ Pugh 15. Darren Wellings v Andy Duckett 16. Matt Beeston v Martin Middleton  

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