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Short Mat Bowling Association

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Welcome to the HSMBA Website

Short mat bowls is a relatively recent variant on the ancient sport of lawn bowls, played indoors on a specially manufactured, pre-marked mat. The sport, which is played socially and competitively in village halls and other community spaces, does not require a permanent location as the portable mats are rolled up and stored when not in use. The sport is played by all ages, sexes and abilities who can compete together.

HSMBA is the organising body for short mat bowls in Herefordshire. We are affiliated to the ESMBA, the governing body in England, and we run leagues, county teams and open competitions as well as generally promoting and developing the sport within the county.

A good place to start for newcomers is our Introduction section where you can find out more about the game, how to start playing or how to go about establishing a new club. Enjoy looking around our website and please use the Contact page to provide feedback or to find out more.

Our most popular pages

County Teams

Summer League



Latest News

Another successful Macmillan Cancer Support Charity Fours saw £1,972 raised and victory to Woolhope C (Ian Park, Dominic & Anthony Rogers + a variety of substitutes in place of Sandra Rogers who was prevented by injury from competing) who beat last year’s winners, Ross, into second place on shot difference. Dominic Rogers also won the Junior Trophy with Luke Rawlings runner-up. Many thanks to all who took part and gave generously. Details here

The 5th round of the Inter County Championship saw the Premier team retain second position in their group despite suffering their second defeat of the season to Gloucestershire whilst the A team had a good win against main group rivals Avon to remain top of their group and now require 12 points from the return match against Avon to win the group. Details Premier team   A team

There is now a For Sale / Wanted page on this site for bowls equipment and clothing only. Details for those wishing to place an ad are on the page.

Entry forms for the National Championships Qualifiers are on club notice boards with a 20 November closing date. Please see below and consider helping the county gain places for all of the disciplines.

The first of this year’s County Championships saw Ian Park (Woolhope SMBC) and Betty & Harold Aubrey (Weston-under-Penyard SMBC) crowned as champions in the Singles and Pairs respectively. Ian defeated Dave Watkins (Ross BC) in the final whilst Betty & Harold were victorious against their club-mates Gill & Tim Rigden. Details on the Singles and Pairs pages. Thanks to all the players who supported these two championships with the best entry levels for several years.

The Singles & Pairs qualifiers for the National Championships have been moved to 17 January 2014 and will be held at the Larruperz. All qualifiers will now be held over that weekend. See Calendar page for details.

Congratulations to Woolhope 2 on their victory in the Summer League Play-off Final, defeating their club-mates Woolhope 1 6-4. Details here

County Competitions - An Appeal for Support

For some years now our competition entries have been falling and some of these competitions are in danger of disappearing if support does not improve. Our new competitions secretary, Ian Park (Woolhope SMBC), will be making every effort to rally support and try to improve entry numbers for the county competitions and all members are encouraged to have a look at the HSMBA Calendar and consider whether they are willing to enter some of these competitions. We would also encourage club committees to help in putting teams together within their clubs for the larger team disciplines. Entry forms will be issued to clubs well ahead of the competition dates.

These one day events are a great opportunity to catch up with members from other clubs and are a social gathering as well as an important competition. All entrants usually get at least 3 games, depending on the entry levels and group formats, and those teams / players not progressing to the later stages can, of course, choose whether or not to stay on to watch and support for the rest of the day.

The County Competitions, together with the leagues, are the lifeblood of the sport in the County and their continued success is key to the growth and development of short mat bowling in Herefordshire - please support these events if you can.

National Qualifiers

We have also seen dwindling entries for the national qualifiers, to the extent that we have recently not had enough entries to run qualifiers for the triples, fours or mixed fours and the county has been allocated no places in the national finals for these disciplines. In all disciplines the number of entries we are allocated for the finals depends on numbers entering the qualifying competitions so fewer entries mean fewer places for the County. We would like to see more entries for these events and to gain at least one place in every discipline this year although we appreciate that not everyone wishes to go to the Nationals and all entrants to the national qualifiers must be prepared to travel to Church Gresley, South Derbyshire for the national finals in March/April should they be successful. Please consider whether you would like to have a go at Nationals qualification and the opportunity to represent the County at the ESMBA’s showpiece event.