Bowls USA National Championships 2019


The National Championships began in 1957 and is the premier bowls event of Bowls USA crowning both men's and women's champions in singles and doubles.

It is a Bowls USA sponsored event hosted by one of the seven divisions and one or more of its member clubs.

Competitors in the Championships must be United States citizens who won their divisional qualifier called the playdowns. A competitor must be a member of an affiliated Bowls USA club. This requirement ensures that all divisions of the United States are represented.

Rules for the National Championships are governed by the Laws of the Sport of Bowls and by Bowls USA domestic regulations.


Each of the 7 divisions host men's and women's playdown tournaments that are open to every Bowls USA member of the division.

Winners of the playdowns represent their division at the National Championships.

The Singles Champions of the US National Championships earn the honor to represent Bowls USA in the World Champion of Champions Singles event the year following their victory.

Schedule (Sat 21st Sep to Sat 28th Sep)

  • 21 Sep - Saturday practice from 10ampm to 3.30pm
  • 22 Sep - Sunday practice from 10am to 3.30pm
  • 23 Sep - Monday practice from 10am to 3.30pm (Inspection of bowls during this time). Opening ceremony at around 4pm
  • 24 Sep - Rounds 1 and 2 on Tueday morning and afternoon
  • 25 Sep - Rounds 3 and 4 on Wednesday morning and afternoon
  • 26 Sep - Rounds 5 and 6 on Thursday morning and afternoon
  • 27 Sep - Round 7 on Friday morning with Playoffs in the afternoon if required, followed by a banquet in the evening
  • 28 Sep - Additional playoff rounds on Saturday morning, if required


San Francisco LBC, Bowling Green Drive, Golden Gate Park


Bowls USA Listing

Bowls USA Facebook Page


The National Championships are played in a Round Robin format with two rounds of play each day.


  • Singles games are played to 21 points.
  • Pairs games are 18 ends.
  • Tied games in pairs shall stand.


  • 3 points for a win
  • 1 point for a tie
  • 0 points for a loss

If two teams are tied for first place at the end of round robin play, they will play off for the championship.

Full Conditions of Play

  • The 2017 National Championships at Newport Harbor Lawn Bowling Club, Newport Beach, CA is an event authorized by Bowls USA. All games shall be played in line with the Laws of the Sport of Bowls, Mark 3rd Edition, and in the accordance with the Domestic Regulations as approved by World Bowls.
  • The inclusive dates and times of this event are Monday, October 2nd through Friday, October 6th. Saturday, October 7th will be available if needed for the playing of a 9th round. All games will start at 9:00 AM and 1:15 PM.
  • Practice prior to the event will be available Saturday, Sep 30th from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM, and on Sunday, Oct 1st from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, and on Monday, Oct 2nd from 9:00 AM to Noon. There shall be no practice bowls prior to trial bowls on each day of the National Championships.
  • Bowl inspection: Monday, Oct. 2nd from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM. Serial number, stamp and date must be legible on all bowls. Shoes must be flat-soled and heel-less.
  • The format is round robin; dead ends shall have the jack placed at the “T”.
  • Singles games will be 21 points; Pairs games will be 18 ends.
  • Trial ends may be played prior to each game, starting at 8:45 AM and 1:00 PM. One trial end in each direction, using either two or four bowls.
  • The winner of each game shall be awarded three (3) points, zero (0) points for a loss. A tied game will stand and each team will receive one (1) point.
  • Pairs games must be completed within the three and a half hours. No time limits on Singles games. Trial ends are excluded. If it is determined that a team or singles player is deliberately engaging in slow play, Appendix A.5 may be invoked by the Tournament Director*.
  • All scorecards must be signed by the opposing skip or Singles player at the end of each game and turned into the scorekeeper by the winner.
  • Cell phones are not permitted on the greens.
  • Smoking is not permitted anywhere near the greens or clubhouse area.
  • The Controlling Body has the authority to make changes that are deemed appropriate in the event of inclement weather, unforeseen circumstances, and / or any substitutions, if necessary. Decisions will be within the Laws of the Sport of Bowls and Bowls USA Domestic Regulations.
  • There will be no restriction of movement of players in any games.

*The four, five and six minutes in A.5 are amended to six, seven and eight minutes.

Substitution language for Playdowns/National Championships

108 Substitutions

  • 108.1 During the Playdowns:
  • 108.1.1 No substitutions shall be permitted once play has commenced.

108.2 During the National Championships when the runner-up is available:

  • 108.2.1 Prior to commencement of play and/or during the National Championships if a Singles player or one or both members of a Pairs team is unable to attend the National Championships or must withdraw from or is unable to finish the competition, then the runner-up from that Division’s Playdowns will play for that Division at the National Championships. The substituting Pairs team must be constituted as it was at the Playdowns.

108.3 During the National Championships when the runner-up is not available:

  • 108.3.1 To prevent the possibility of a Division’s default, the Tournament Director and/or Tournament Committee, after consultation with the defaulting Division’s Executive Board and/or designated representative, may appoint a substitute for a missing Singles player or for one or both members of a Pairs team, providing the following conditions are met:
  • The substitute is a current Bowls USA member;
  • The substitute is a U.S. citizen;
  • The substitute is of the same gender and belongs to the same Division as the defaulting player; and
  • The substitute did not compete in any Division’s Playdowns that year.
  • If the condition set forth cannot be met, then the following order of substitution may be used:
  • a) Next highest finisher who is available
  • b) Person who did not participate in the Playdowns in the same division
  • c) Bye

108.4 During the National Championships when the runner-up is not available and/or substitution is not possible, and a team is unable to finish the tournament, scores shall be adjusted as follows:

  • 108.4.1 All completed games shall be recorded with the points earned
  • 108.4.2 For games not completed or not played, their opponent will receive 3 (three) points and the average score of the winning teams in the other matches played in that round of competition.

108.5 During the National Championships when unexpected circumstances arise:

  • 108.5.1 If none of the above Domestic Regulations adequately apply to a situation that arises, the Tournament Director and/or Tournament Committee shall issue a ruling on how the National Championships shall proceed and this ruling shall be final.

From our umpire in chief regarding the 2017 NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS

During the National Championships, the following Laws of the Sport of Bowls will be strictly enforced:

Section 1.3 - Possession of the rink Law 12 and Position of players Law 13

Possession of the rink

In particular: A player who delivers a bowl shall not be on the rink of play between the mat-line and the jack once the delivered bowl comes to rest; Once a delivered bowl comes to rest, the next to play may take their position on the mat

As soon as a bowl is delivered, a player who is controlling play from a position that is level with or in front of the jack must take their position as described in law 12.1.2, which is behind the head; in other words, remove your foot and retreat a meter or so

No one is to go into a neighboring rink where play is in progress.


Following a bowl partway down the rink, watching it come to rest, and then returning to the mat-end of the rink of play or walking down to the head, is in violation of Laws 12 and 13.

If a Singles match is completed prior to the conclusion of a Pairs game, players in the Pairs game are not to go into the empty rink. See Law 12.2.2.

Note: The Laws of the Sport of Bowls allow for umpires to warn players of the above offenses without a complaint from a player. See Law 13.3.

In addition, the greens will be closed at the end of the day. There will be no practice or roll ups allowed while the greens are closed.