Stowmarket’s Mark Royal goes out of world singles event at Potters

Mark Royal

Mark Royal

Stowmarket’s Mark Royal has been defeated by Gary R. Smith at the first round stage of the World Open Singles Championship at Potters Resort, in Norfolk, last night.

Royal lost the first set 8-3 but fought back from 4-3 down in the second to win 6-5.

However, Royal lost the decisive third set tie-breaker 2-0, to go out.

Bowls shop owner Royal, became only the second seed to make an exit from the sport’s flagship event, when he came up against in-form England international from the Stanley club in County Durham.

“That was the best I’ve played all year,” said Royal. “Gary was sensational. I drew well, and my running shots were generally on target, but I didn’t get the rub of the green, though I was glad to score three shots to win the second set.”

Royal practiced on the rink at 7.30 yesterday morning, spent the day visiting his four-year-old son Ashton in hospital, and taking his other son Leighton to a county cross country meeting. “It’s been a long day,” he sighed as he left the green last night.

Baylham’s Katherine Rednall is in mixed doubles action today when she partners Andy Thomson in a game against Alex Marshall and Alison Merrien.

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The 18-year-old Stowmarket High School pupil starts her singles campaign tomorrow against Eleanor Gass.

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