NEW British Isles Pairs Champions Stephen and David Fisher have told of their disappointment after claiming that a fixture pile-up cost them the chance to defend their Scottish titles.
The Anchor pair were faced with a nightmare dilemma last Wednesday when they were scheduled to represent Scotland in Edinburgh ... just five hours before they were due back for a District Final clash in Paisley.
The row did not prevent them from winning through to the British Isles Championship Final, where they later beat the Jersey pair of Greg and Ross Davies.
But it did throw them off their game, by the time they had dashed back to Priorscoft Bowling Club to face Fergsulie duo Alex Jaffray and Peter Lavelle.
The sore 23-12 defeat came at the end of a hectic day and, ultimately, cost them the chance to defend their Scottish crown at this month’s national championships in Ayr.
Stephen, 40, told Express Sports: “We came through our semi-final against Wales after David and I decided to just blank out everything else and concentrate on that match.
“Thankfully, we won it pretty comfortably after the Welsh association had kindly agreed to start a little earlier.
“However, all that rushing about wasn’t the best preparation and, even though we were back in Paisley in plenty of time, we were not able to do ourselves justice.
“We were beaten fair and square but we felt we could have done better if we had been allowed to prepare properly.
“We can’t now defend our Scottish titles and we are pretty disappointed about that.”
The Fishers came through their semi-final at Sighthill in the capital easily enough, as they eased to a 27-19 win.
After moving on from their District Final loss, they regained their focus the next day to edge out the Davies brothers with a tight 22-19 final to claim the British title.
And Stephen said that more than made up for the previous day’s disappointment.
“It was a very close game and very hard fought,” he said. “It could have gone either way but, when we won it, the scenes of celebration were just manic.
“To win a British title is a dream come true and we have got to thank all the supporters who came through from Paisley to cheer us on.”
Meanwhile, Scotland’s bowling chiefs are to draw up a new set of rules to prevent a repeat of the fixture pile-up.
A spokesman for Bowls Scotland said: “We are extremely disappointed that a more suitable alternative could not be sought, given the clash in the competition schedule which has resulted in the Anchor players competing twice on the same day.
“However, a new policy is being considered by the board, governing the role and responsibility of district secretaries to ensure that this will not happen again and, in the event of a scheduling clash, Bowls Scotland will be responsible for providing fair and suitable alternatives.”