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Conditions of Play

Controlling Body  Bowls Victoria
Event  2019 Victorian Open
Dates November 15 – 22,  2019
Venue  Shepparton Park Bowls Club and other venues as determined by the Controlling Body.

COP Click here for a print copy.

1.0 Entry Conditions

Open to all bowlers affiliated with a State or Territory Association that is affiliated to Bowls Australia or affiliated to an international body that is a member of World Bowls.

1.1 Victorian Open

Entries will be accepted electronically via the Bowls Victoria website

All entries must include full payment of the entry fee. Entries close Wednesday October 16 at 4:30pm.

1.2 Late entries

The Controlling Body at its sole discretion may include late entries either before or after the draw has been published. If required late entries will be included in the order received.

2.0 Eligibility

As a condition of entry, all competitors must:

2.1     Not be currently under disqualification or suspension by their state/territory association or their national authority.

2.2     Satisfy the eligibility criteria of their member state/territory association;

2.3     Comply with all applicable Laws of the Sport of Bowls Crystal Mark 3rdEdition Version 3.1, BA Domestic Regulations and policies of Bowls Australia & Bowls Victoria.

3.0 Format

3.1     Singles– Four Bowls per player,21 shots up, in excess of 21 shots shall not count, with a time limit of two and a quarter hours per match (not including trial ends).

3.2     Pairs– Three Bowls per player, 15 ends, with a time limit of two and a quarter hours per match (not including trial ends).

3.3     Triples– Two Bowls per player, 15 ends, with a time limit of two and a quarter hours per match (not including trial ends).

3.4     Time limits will apply to all games for all disciplines, except for the finalin each discipline.  Should a match be stopped due to extreme weather or deemed necessary by the Controlling Body the time limit will be extended by the equivalent amount of the time for the delay.

3.5     Any player/team arriving after the official start time shall lose the right to play trial ends. Any player/team not ready to commence play within 15 minutes of the official starting time shall forfeit the game.  This determination will be made by the Tournament Director on the recommendation of the umpire in control of the match.

3.6     Should a match not be completed, in accordance with the Format of play, except for the final in each discipline, the score will stand as at the completion of the end in play.

3.7     For the final of each discipline, if scores are equal when the required number of ends has been played, one additional end (or additional ends if required) will be played to determine a winner (as per Law 28).

3.8     Matches will be conducted on a combination of natural grass & synthetic surfaces.

4.0 Alterations to the format and length of games

4.1     The Controlling Body reserves the right to alter the format, times of play, greens and venues to suit local unforeseen circumstances, giving as much notice as practicable.

4.2     Where an event is interrupted or cannot be completed due to inclement weather or other unsuitable conditions, the Controlling Body may alter any of the conditions of its programme if it decides it is necessary to successfully carry out or finish the event.

5.0 Sectional Play

Game points will be awarded as follows:

5.1     Win – 3 points

5.2     Tie – 1 point.

5.3     Loss – no points

5.4     Bye – no points – note if a player/team withdraws from a section prior to commencement of play in round 1 it will be treated a bye.

5.5     Forfeit – 3 points & net total shots equal to the average net shots scored by the winners of the other games played in allsectionsin the same round at the same venue.

5.6     If scores are equal when the time limit is reached, the match shall be declared a tie.

5.7     The winner of the section will be the player/team with the most game points. If game points are equal, they will be ranked by:

5.8     Highest net total shots (shots for minus shots against).

5.8.1    If net total shots are equal, then the total shots for will be divided by the total shots against to calculate a percentage.

5.8.2    The side with the highest percentage will be ranked higher (law 27.4).

5.8.3    If the percentage is equal then the player or team that won the game between the player or team that are equal will be the winner of the section.

5.9     In Singles sectional play, the non-playing member of the section will act as *marker for the section game in which they are not playing.

5.10   The fixture for singles sectional play will be:

Round 1           Player 1 v Player 2                    Player 3 marks the game

Round 2           Loser R1 v Player 3                    Winner R1 marks the game

Round 3           Winner R1 v Player 3                Loser R1 marks this game

*Special conditions of play for singles events:

  1. It is mandatory that all Singles entrants mark all games required in their section irrespective of the outcome or round results in the respective section.
  2. Players when marking are required to be present a minimum of 30 minutes prior to the scheduled starting time and be in attendance at the venue until the completion of Round 3 – players who do not fulfil their requirement may face disqualification and exclusion from future BV championships & events, a fine or other sanction.

6.0 Commencement times of games

All competitors must arrive at the venue at least 30 minutes prior to the start time, trial ends commence 15 minutes before the commencement time of games.

7.0 Procedure for applying time limits

7.1     Start of play – play will commence with the venue managersignalling the start time by a bell, horn, etc.

7.2     End of play – at the completion of the allocated time, the venue managerwill signal the end of play by a bell, horn, etc. At this time players will complete the end in progress. (the start of an end is determined by the delivery of the jack by the first to play in that end).

8.0 Trial ends

8.1     Team games – Sectional play

One trial end in each direction prior to the start of the first round only in sectional play using the number of bowls to be used in the game.

8.2     Singles games – Sectional play

One trial end of two bowls in each direction prior to the start of each game.

8.3     Knockout rounds – all disciplines

One trial end in each direction using the number of bowls to be used in the game.

8.4     Trial ends must be completed prior to the official start time of each game.

8.5     The venue managerwill signal when trial ends may commence.

9.0 Delaying play

If the umpire, either by their own observation or on appeal from one of the skips or the opponent in singles, decides that a player is deliberately delaying the delivery of the player’s bowl:

9.1       On the first occasion the umpire will warn the player.

9.2       If the player commits the same offence a second time the end will be regarded as complete and the opponents of the offending player/team will score as many shots as there are bowls in use by such opponent(s).

9.3       If the player offends a third time the game will be forfeited to the opponent(s).

10. Restricting movement of players during play

After delivering their first bowl, players will only be allowed to walk up to the head under the following circumstances.

10.1     Singles game: after delivery of their third and fourth bowls.

10.2     Pairs game (each player playing three bowls)

The leads:       after delivery of their third bowl; and

The skips:       after delivery of their second and third bowls.

10.3     Triples game (each player playing two bowls)

The leads and second:    after delivery of their second bowl;

The skips:    after delivery of each of their bowls.

10.4   At the start of each end, the lead and second in Tripleswill be at the mat end and on changeovers the Skips (in Pairs and Triples) will move to the mat end together.

10.4   In exceptional and limited circumstances, a skip can ask that a player walks up to the head, or a player to the marker in singles, earlier than described above. If a player does not meet these requirements, then Law 13 will apply.

11.0 Re-spotting of the jack

11.1   If a jack in motion passes completely outside the boundaries of the rink of play, comes to rest in any hollow in the face of the bank, or rebounds to a distance of less than 18 metres from the mat line, the end should not be declared dead. Instead, the jack should be placed with the nearest point of the jack to the mat line at a spot on the rink which is two metres from the front ditch and on the centre line and play should continue.

11.2   If the spot mentioned above is partly or completely covered by a bowl, the jack should be placed as close as possible to the covered spot, in line with that spot and the corresponding spot at the opposite end of the rink, without touching a bowl.

12. Substitute / Replacement players

12.1   Substitute and Replacement players may be permitted in team games in accordance with Bowls Australia Domestic Regulation, Crystal Mark 3rdEdition Version 3.1.   Prior approval of the Controlling Body must be obtained before a substitute or replacement player is introduced.

12.2   A substitute or replacement player is not permitted for a singles player.

13. Leaving the venue

Players must not leave the venue until they areeliminated from the competitionas game times may be moved forward by the Controlling Body as required to keep the event flowing.

14. Heat policy

If the actual dry bulb temperature recorded at the venue clubhas reached 38 degrees celsius then any matches in progress will be suspended until such time as the temperature falls back below 38 degrees celsius, every effort must be made to complete the ends in progress prior to leaving the green for the temporary suspension of play. Umpires are not required to monitor the temperature but to make a determination if an appeal is made in relation to the heat/temperature.   If play is interrupted the umpire will determine when play is to resume.

15. Other inclement weather

15.1   Each club will appoint a greens director who will be present to act in the event of other (non-heat related) inclement weather issues.

15.2   The greens director in consultation with the umpire(s) may call a suspension of play if the circumstances require it in the interest of players’ safety (e.g. Lateral water on the green, danger of slipping, lightening in the vicinity etc).

 16. Bowls stickers (adhesive stickers)

16.1   If opposing teams or singles players have the same design or colour of stickers, the singles player or players in the team listed second in the draw must remove their stickers (Law

16.2   In team games all bowls within that team must have identical stickers (Law

16.3   Any bowls stickers that are used must not obscure the serial number or the World Bowls Stamp (Law Umpires or the Controlling Body have the right to instruct players to remove, replace or apply alternate bowls stickers due to discolouration, damage, inappropriate placement or colour clashes

17. Arrangement for practice

Practice may be permitted in accordance with Law 4. 

18. Drug testing

Bowls Australia’s anti-doping policy shall apply. See details.

19. Player conduct & behaviour

19.1   All players are required to conduct themselves in a polite and sportsman like manner when participating in the Stella Victorian Open and not in any of the following behaviours:

19.1.1      act in an abusive, threatening, or intimidating manner;

19.1.2      use obscene, offensive, abusive, threatening, or intimidating language;

19.1.3      act in an unsportsmanlike manner;

19.1.4       threaten any person with physical violence or assault;

19.1.5      assault any person;

19.1.6      act in a manner likely to bring the sport of bowls into disrepute; or

19.1.7      act in a manner likely to bring Bowls Victoria into disrepute.

19.2  A failure to comply can result in the Umpire applying an Instantaneous Penalty.

20.    Instantaneous penalties

20.1   If an Umpire, by observation or on an appeal by the Controlling Body, a Skip or an opponent in singles decides that a player is non-compliant then the end shall be immediately regarded as completed and the opponent of the offender shall be awarded as many shots as there are bowls in use by the opponent(s).

20.2   If the Umpire forms the opinion on a second occasion that the same player is non-compliant, the player will be excluded from taking any further part in the game. A substitute will not be permitted, and the defaulting player/team will forfeit the game.

20.3   An instantaneous penalty applied to one player in a Team shall be considered as an instantaneous penalty to all players in that Team.

20.4   Any of the above Umpire imposed sanctions are final and cannot be contested, disregarded or appealed.

20.5   The Umpire shall also forward a written report about the incident to the Controlling Body within seven (7) days of the incident.

21.    Smoking

21.1   Smoking on the green (defined as having a lit cigarette, pipe, cigar, electronic nicotine delivery system (ENDS) including e-cigs, e-cigarettes and any other form of smoking device) by a player on the green is not permitted.

21.2   Smoking is only permitted in the designated area as determined by the Club.

21.3   A failure to comply can result in the Umpire applying an Instantaneous Penalty.

22.    Personal electronic/communication devices

22.1   The use of Mobile Phones/MP3 Players/iPods/iPads/Pagers/Communication Devices and/or other similar sound/communication devices on the green by a player is not permitted.

22.2   Should a Player have a legitimate reason (personal emergency or medical or emergency services personnel) to answer a mobile phone they must have permission from the Controlling Body and notify the Umpire of the day prior to playing.   If approved the phone can be carried on the player but must be on silent / vibrating (only) and responded to on the bank away from play.

22.3   A failure to comply can result in the Umpire applying an Instantaneous Penalty.

23.    Consumption of alcohol

23.1   The consumption of alcohol on the green by a player whilst a match is in progress is not permitted.

23.2   A failure to comply can result in the Umpire applying an Instantaneous Penalty.

24. Footwear and attire

24.1   Players must wear flat soled rubber heelless soles footwear.   Thongs are not permitted (excluding the “OOFOS OOriginal Thong” – specifically by make/model).

24.2   All attire must comply with Bowls Australia National Merchandise Program (NMP) Logo Policy as it relates to upper and lower body attire.   The NMP Logo must appear on the front or side of all headwear, except on hats with a hat band, where a logo is not required.

24.3   Failure to adhere to the BA logo policy will result in the offending player being given a verbal warning by the convening umpire which will be lodged and recorded with the tournament director. The offending player will then be provided up until the forfeit time of their subsequent game to comply with the BA logo policy. Failure to comply will result in the offending player being disqualified and the game forfeited to their opponent.

25. The Vic Medal

Winner to be calculated as per the following:

1 bonus point for each player in the last 16 of each discipline (4 events)

Reaching Last 16 – 2 points in each discipline

Winner Last 16 – 2 points in each discipline
Winner Last 8 – 2 points in each discipline

Winning Last 4 –2 points in each discipline
Winner Last 2 – 2 points in each discipline

Winner calculated by:
Total points;
If total points equal then shots up;
If total shots equal then ends won;
If ends won are equal prize money shared equally.

If there is a forfeit the player/team receiving the forfeit will receive 3pointsplus the average of the shots up in that round in that discipline.

26. Prize money

Distribution of the prize money will be published on the Bowls Victoria website –    Any player or team that is disqualified or forfeits a prize money round is ineligible to receive their prize money.

27. Jury of appeal

27.1   A jury of appeal shall be appointed for the purpose of deciding upon any matters not provided for in the Conditions of Play or dealing with appeals resulting from decisions made by umpires.

27.2   Any appeal against a decision made by an official relating to a Law, Domestic Regulation or Conditions of Play may be referred to the Tournament Director in the first instance before being referred to the Jury of Appeal.   The Jury of Appeal shall consist of:

  • Tournament Director or their nominee;
  • BV Chief Executive or their nominee;
  • BV Events Manager or their nominee;
  • BV Officiating & Laws Committee Chair or their nominee;

28. Other laws, regulations & policies

All laws, regulations & policies other than stated above shall conform to the 2019 Laws of the Sport of Bowls Crystal Mark 3 Edition Version 3.1 and BA Domestic Regulations (located at

29. Media, Photography, Video and Live Streaming

Bowls Victoria reserves the right to use any photographs or video taken during this event for promotional requirements. Some matches will be broadcasted through Bowls Victoria’s various communication channels and at the discretion of the controlling body. All media requests are to be directed to Bowls Victoria’s Media and Communication Manager in the first instance.