Tactical situations – What are the options?

A Question of Choices

With every bowl we throw we always start with choices and then we make a decision.  For a lead, normally, the first bowl is a draw bowl to the jack.  So you have a choice of which side to play and then you have to decide the line and the weight.  As the head starts to build, so do the options and as a result the decisions get harder.

Here’s a simple diagram of a head with three bowls from each team.  Take a look at the diagram and at the list of choices provided.  You can see that there are many choices on how to play this head, but what it comes down to is… what is the correct one for you?  The best shot will not be the same for everyone, some are far better draw bowlers, some have a wicked drive and some have a great feel for yard on or maybe you find a green that you are amazing on and can pick a harder skilled shot.

Sample head

To start let’s say your team (yellow) is holding three shots and both skips have one delivery left with your skip going first.  Your skip’s choice of deliveries is numerous.  (Before reading the list below, can you identify the options if your skip was to ask you?)

Forehand (right hand)

  1. Draw another shot
  2. Draw to cover the back black bowl
  3. Draw a metre short to block the opposition entry to draw
  4. Hide the jack between two yellow bowls on left side
  5. Trail the jack behind second yellow bowl on the left
  6. Draw and stay as a resting toucher
  7. Push back black bowl into the ditch and stay on green yourself
  8. Push the right yellow bowl over behind the jack as protection


  1. Draw another shot
  2. Draw to cover back two black bowls
  3. Draw narrow and a metre short to block opposition entry for a draw shot
  4. Drive out two black bowls on the left
  5. Draw and stay as a resting toucher
  6. Push back black bowls into the ditch and stay on green yourself
  7. Push left yellow bowl over behind the jack as protection

With these fifteen (15) options can you decide which is the best shot for you?  For your team?  Do you even know what your skip is good at?

This is only one example to consider as you will constantly be inundated with choices as you play and you should be considering all the available shots and making your best choice.

Also consider what your options would be if both skips have their final two bowls to play to the same head with your skips going first.

Example and drill taken from Lachlan Tighe


2 thoughts on “Tactical situations – What are the options?”

  1. Just curious, if you were the skip what shot would you pick?

    I think I would forehand draw directly behind the jack to prevent the opposition from taking the jack back but to be honest, this is quite a difficult scenario you came up with.

    1. I most likely would choose the backhand (left side) draw to the back black bowls. I know my draw is good and I have no fear of bumping the yellow on that side as I will most likely move them into a decent spot. Other shots may be a little less percentage and I know my strength is in my draw/overdraw.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Coaching Blog For Canadian Lawn Bowlers!

%d bloggers like this: