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Ballarat Highlands Bowls Region releases its season 2021-22 fixture

Victoria Bowling Club Weekend Pennant Premier Division winners 2020-2021

THE Ballarat Highlands Bowls Association admits it remains in limbo as to when exactly its new season starts, despite pushing ahead with the release of its season 2021-22 fixture.

The newly created association, which has taken over the Ballarat District Bowls Division will see 10 teams compete in Premier competitions on both Saturday and Tuesday and is slated to start on October 2.

The 18-round season features a bye on Ballarat Cup day (November 20) and a three-week shutdown period over Christmas, with the competition to resume on January 15.

But there is every chance there will be changes, particularly to the start of the season, dependent on what rules the state government relaxes in coming weeks.

The newly-formed region also will need to walk the tightrope of players who live in metropolitan Melbourne but play for country-based clubs.

BHBA president Ian Guymer, who lives in Sunbury, used himself as just one example of many who live in designated city zones, but play regionally.

“We’re looking to start on October 2, but right now we’re in limbo a little bit, right now we’re not sure how that will look.”

Guymer said a lot of work would need to be done in the coming weeks given clubs and players haven’t had any training time or pre-season matches.

“We either go into the season with everyone on the same level or there’s an opportunity to possibility put the season back two or three weeks and give clubs an opportunity to find form before we start the season proper,” he said.

“But that will all depend on restrictions and what is in place. At the moment, it’s very difficult to guess. Right now we’re in week five of a seven-day lockdown.”

He said consideration would also need to be given into what a possible increase to a 10km radius of travel would mean for outlying clubs.

“If I had to guess, I’d say that regional competitions will get going before the metro ones,” he said.

Both Saturday and Tuesday pennant will see 10 teams compete over an 18-round season with season’s aimed to be competed by March 19 and 22.

Check out the full season fixtures on Bowls Link.

Greg Gliddon – The Ballarat Courier (September 7, 2021)

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