BOWLS: It's a family affair at the Bristol Open

WESTLECOT’S Neil Smith was pushed hard by his daughter Katy as he placed best of the local players in the Bristol Open Singles Tournament last weekend.

Neil Smith won his first three matches but then went out in the quarter-finals beaten 2-0 by Scott Edwards (Adur, West Sussex) who was runner-up in last season’s 2012/13 planetbowls grand play-offs final in Boston.

An extremely tired Smith had only returned to his West Swindon home in the early hours of Sunday morning after driving back from Stanley, County Durham where he had been with the England team competing in the Home International Series.

Despite only reaching the quarter-finals Smith moved-up in the planetbowls rankings list from seventh to fifth.

At Bristol Smith beat Chris Easton (Clarrie Dunbar) 2-0 in the first round and followed that up with an easy 2-0 success over Bristol player Eric Seavill.

The open draw pitched him against his youngest daughter Katy Smith in the last 16 which he won 1.5-0.5 (7-7, 8-2) before going out to Scott Edwards.

Though she lost to her father it was Katy’s best planetbowls performance to date, reaching the last 16 out of a 64 strong field.

In round one she accounted for Nick Revell (Five Rivers), winner of this season’s Camberley Open, 2-1 (7-6, 2-7, 2-1) and in round two beat Westlecot player James Nobbs 2-0 (7-2, 6-2) before coming up against her father but certainly pushed him in the first set drawing it 7-7.

Other Westlecot first round winners were Nobbs who beat Welshman Tommy Nutt 2-1 (7-2, 6-7, 2-0) and Dennis Holborow who caused a surprise beating Ian Jefferies 2-0 (10-1, 7-3).

But other early Westlecot departees were Gary Jackson, Lucy Smith and Mike Titcombe Junior.

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