2023 League Fixtures now published
The newly appointed NIPGBL President, John Nicholl (Ballymena BC), served as our PRO between 2016 and 2018 and has been a member of our selection committee since 2017.
Having begun his involvement with bowls in the short mat game at the age of 10, John had to wait until 1976, when he was 18, to join Ballymena BC. The restrictions imposed by licensing laws in that era contrast with the huge opportunities available to young bowlers today.
John’s recent appointment as Irish indoor international assistant team manager ensures that the knowledge and experience accumulated through 66 senior international caps between 1995 and 2017 will continue to benefit the indoor game in the future.
Although outdoor international recognition was not forthcoming, John was a valued member of the famous NIPGBL senior team which won the inter-association title 6 years in a row between 1998 and 2003. Highlights of a successful playing career also include 2 IBA Senior Cup wins, 7 PGL Senior League wins, 6 PGL Senior Cup wins, 5 NIPGBL championship titles and 2 IBA national titles (Triples in 2012 and Senior Rinks in 2015).
John acknowledges that it is a challenging time for the NIPGBL in particular, and for Irish bowls in general, with declining membership and clubs struggling to field teams. He hopes that the recent change to allow ladies to play in our league and cup competitions is an indication that this is also a time for potential change, development and evolution for our sport.
Although it will be difficult to emulate the playing successes of the 2018 season, we wish John an enjoyable, memorable and successful year in office.