Small entries have raised doubts about the future of the
annual Festival Fours bowls tournament.
''Our club is looking at other options and may not hold the
tournament next season,'' Kaikorai Bowling Club president
Barry Craig told the Otago Daily Times.
The annual Festival Fours event was started in 1953 by the
Kaituna club. Kaikorai took charge when the Kaituna club went
into recess nine years ago.
Only 24 teams have entered for this year's event that starts
today at the Kaikorai and Wakari greens.
''Unless we get more support from Dunedin bowlers, the event
could lapse,'' Craig said.
The event has always had solid support from teams outside
Dunedin and it is the same this year, with five teams from
other centres entered.
One of the strongest visiting teams is Richie Kerr's Kia Toa
combination from Timaru.
The team includes Ken Callon and Jim Vevers from the Timaru
club and Kaikorai's Dave Callon, who grew up in Timaru and is
the son of 82-year-old Ken.
A regular from South Otago is Wynston McLachlan (Clinton),
who won the New Zealand pairs title with Les Morrison in
Marty Kreft, the son of former All Black prop Tony Kreft,
skips a strong Alexandra team. Other strong country
combinations include teams skipped by Tony Cockerill (Gore)
and Adam Wyber (Milton).
Last year's composite winning team of Ross Munro, Mel
Carmichael, Barry Craig and John Munro will be defending its
It will be the sixth time that Ross Munro (65), a retired
freezing worker, has played in the event. The accurate lead
has won it twice and was runner-up on one occasion. He has
also won the plate event twice.
There are two other composite teams that will put in strong
A strong contender is the team skipped by Steve Fleming. It
includes his brother, Rodney, and Kaikorai players Steve
Wilson and Mike Kernaghan.
Kernaghan won a bronze medal in the singles at the 2002
Commonwealth Games and has won three New Zealand titles -
singles in 2001 and 2002, and pairs with Dave Archer in 2007.
Graeme Allan has a team that includes Dan O'Leary, Peter
Wilson and Mike Cranston. Other teams to watch are skipped by
Jacko Susilo (Andersons Bay) and Regan Larkin (Kaikorai).
The first two days will consist of round-robin section play,
with games restricted to 2hr 15min or 18 ends.
Three games of section play will be held today and tomorrow
from 8.30am and the final is expected to start at 1.45pm on
Sunday at the Kaikorai green.
Dates: January 4-6
Venues: Kaikorai and Wakari clubs
Final: Kaikorai green, Sunday, 1.45pm
First held: 1953, at Kaituna