Match rules and code of practice

Code of Practice


This code of practice has been devised to satisfy the declared aims of the league as stated in the constitution:

“The aim of the league is to promote the game of crown green bowls at the highest level, and to improve the awareness of the game by attracting spectators and greater sponsorship. To this end the management council expects players and clubs to adopt a code of practice regarding such standards, dress and behaviour on and around the green”.

The code of practice contains a number of requirements which all clubs must achieve, and a number of recommendations which all clubs should work towards.

Playing facilities

All clubs participating in this league must have floodlights. The green should be in match condition and all necessary equipment available.


Clubs are expected to treat visitors with courtesy and respect

Where possible, clubs should aim to provide visiting teams with suitable changing facilities and a safe location to leave equipment.

It is the accepted practice to provide visiting teams with refreshments at the conclusion of the match.

Spectator provision

In accordance with the aim of encouraging spectators clubs are advised to make spectator provision a priority.

It is recommended that, where possible, adequate seating and shelter should be provided for spectators

Where club rules permit all spectators should be allowed access to bar and refreshment facilities

During the progress of the match spectators should be kept informed of players on the green and match scores. Use of a scoreboard might help in that regard if it could be arranged.

Conduct on matches

All matches must be conducted in accordance with the Match Laws laid down in the handbook

Dress Code

While the league does not set out to be an arbiter of fashion, it is entirely reasonable to expect that players present a professional image to sponsors, supporters and the press. To that end the management council strongly recommends that uniform clothing in club colours be worn whenever possible.

The underlying consideration is that players should be attired in “smart casual wear” which presents a coordinated team image.

It is considered unacceptable to wear any form of Denim jeans, Shell suits, Shorts, and Football shirts or tracksuit bottoms, which present the game in an unfavourable light. All trousers must be full length. Any wearing of these articles liable to a 21-0 loss.

Any complaint regarding a player’s dress code must be made to the opposing captain before the commencement of the game in question. Once a game has commenced, it is deemed that the dress code is acceptable to both teams and therefore no objection can be lodged afterwards.


Acceptable standards of behaviour are essential to promote the game to the public. The use of foul and abusive language or other improper conduct is deprecated.

The attention of clubs is brought to rule 11(b):

“The Management Council shall have the power to fine or suspend any offending player or club who in their opinion are guilty of ungentlemanly, insulting or improper behaviour likely to bring the game into disrepute”.

Last man standing competition

In order to qualify for this award a player must play in at least 75% of the first twelve fixtures

Match Laws

  1. In league matches, the captains shall act as referee’s and have full control of the game unless an independent referee is appointed.
  2. All matches must be played home and away as per fixture list. Teams to consist of 10 players on each side. Games to commence at 7.30pm. Captains of each team to name their team in playing order at 7.25pm. If the player is not present when called upon to play, he must be replaced by a reserve. Four jacks to be in play by 7.30pm and maintained throughout the match. Any team not playing a full team shall be fined £10 for each player short. Before play commences all equipment as laid down by BCGBA (jacks, mats, 19m measuring tape etc) shall be made available for inspection and authentication by the visiting team. In the event of non-authentication, the home team shall forfeit the match, the visiting team receiving a maximum of 18 points.
  3. In all games played the visitor shall lead the jack, Practice shall be home players up to 7.05pm and away players 7.10pm – 7.25pm. Standard jacks are to be used in all games. Games to be 21 up (match jacks used for practice)
  4. League to be run on the following basis, 1 point for each individual home winner, 1½ points for each individual away win, with 3 points for the match aggregate. Points will be divided for a tied aggregate.
  5. In the event of a tie for the championship then the teams concerned must play off on a neutral green, at a time and place decided by the Management Council.
  6. All winners of trophies shall hold them until their return is requested by the Administration Secretary. They shall return them in a clean, sound and polished condition, so as to reach the Administration Secretary within 7 days of such a request, any club failing to comply shall be responsible for any cost incurred and shall be fined accordingly.
  7. Results are to be phoned or emailed through to the league secretary by mid-day of the following day; failure to comply will make the offending club liable to a fine.
  8. The home team shall provide a correctly filled in result sheet (on the form provided) for each league match by the first post or by hand to reach the administration secretary within 5 days of the match being played. If not the club shall be liable to a £5 fine.
  9. No player to play for more than one club in the league season.
  10. Defaulting members of clubs upon being reported to the Administration Secretary in writing shall not be eligible to play for any other club until their obligations have been met in full.
  11.  A programme of fixtures of all matches to be played during the season must be arranged by the Management Council and a copy of these is issued to all clubs affiliated. No club shall postpone any match excepting where any postponement is caused by inclement weather or any serious unforeseen circumstances. Postponements caused by inclement weather shall not be made before the appointed start time. In the event of such a postponement the clubs shall rearrange the match in accordance with the conditions stated subsequently in this rule. If agreement cannot be reached, the host club must immediately inform the Administration Secretary in writing. The matter will then be placed before the management council, who shall, after receiving representation from both clubs, make a binding decision. All postponed matches must be played within 28 days of the original date. Any divergence from this could result in a fine of up to £25, and up to 10 points deducted from each team to be at the digression of the management council. Problem fixtures can only be played prior to or within 7 days of the advertised date by mutually agreed arrangement. Notification in writing must be given to the Administration Secretary and also the representative of the Manchester Evening News by phone.
  12. Any club playing a defaulter or non-registered player shall lose 2 points. The offending players score shall be deleted from the match and his opponent’s card shall read 21-0. Teams playing an illegal or unregistered player shall be fined £10 and be deducted 5 points per offence. The offending players score to count 21-0 against and appropriate changes to the match result and points shall be made.
  13. Any club raising any objection or complaint under these rules or under the laws of the game shall do so in writing to the Administration Secretary by the secretary of the club concerned. He will then place the matter before the next available meeting of the Management Council, and will notify the clubs of the date and place of that meeting. The decision of the Management Council will be final and should the council consider the objections or complaint groundless then the club making the objection or complaint may be fined.
  14. Should either of the clubs concerned in the objection or complaint have a member who is a member who is a member of the council, then the said member shall not be eligible to sit on the council whilst such an objection or complaint is being considered.
  15. All games organised by the Management Council of this league must be played under BCGBA rules.
  16. Following the completion of the league season, the teams finishing in the top four positions in the league table shall play-off. The format and prize money to be decided by the Management Council.