Galgate’s Gower targets ‘dream’ final on return to World Championships

Janice Gower in aciton at the World Indoor Bowls Championships back in 2014.
Janice Gower in aciton at the World Indoor Bowls Championships back in 2014.

A Galgate bowler is hoping to realise a dream and reach a world final.

Janice Gower returns to the World Indoor Bowls Championships at the Potters Leisure Resort in Great Yarmouth after a year away.

Janice Gower in aciton at the World Indoor Bowls Championships back in 2014.

Janice Gower in aciton at the World Indoor Bowls Championships back in 2014.

In 2014 the England champion was knocked out the last eight of the ladies singles but reached the semi-finals of the mixed pairs.

This time around the commentator and journalist believes she is ready to make that next step, especially after finding out she will team up with David Gourlay,

Gower said: “It would be a dream to get into a world final.

“I’ve never had much luck in the singles. I feel like I’ve played well but you need that bit of luck and I feel like it hasn’t been on my side.

“I’m feeling really hopeful about the mixed pairs because I’m not only playing with someone who is one of the legends of the game but someone who is also a close friend. 
“He’s at the top of the men’s game and was the Scotland coach for the Commonwealth Games.

“He’s helped me out with some coaching as well.

“It’s a random draw so to get him is a dream come true really. If it’s somebody you don’t know you’ve got that getting to know you phase but we know each other’s games inside out.”

Gower could argue her bad luck in the singles has continued as she has been drawn to face defending champion Laura Thomas in the quarter-finals on Saturday, January 16, the day after her mixed pairs opener.

She said: “The defending champion. What a great start!

“She’s one of the most successful players on that rink. She’s won the mixed pairs twice and last year won the singles.

“She’s a really good, young player.

“They’re all tough games though, getting to the quarter-finals is a fantastic achievement in itself.”

Gower however feels she heads south in good form having worked on her fitness at 3-1-5 Health Club.

A string of fine performances also mean she has a busy few months to start 2016.

She said: “I’m feeling good and think I’ve found some form.

“I’ve got into the Grand Prix at Lincoln which for the first time this year has two women alongside the 32 men so to be one of those I must be playing well.

“I’m involved in the Nationals and I’ve got the Champion of Champions event to come.

“And Sue (Kearsley) and I winning the English (Indoors) back in April qualifies me for the British Isles event in March down in Llanelli.

“I’ve got so many big things coming up over the next three or four months.”

Commentary duty

Janice Gower will be both behind and in front of the camera as this year’s World Championships.

The Galgate bowler will work as a commentator on both the World Bowls YouTube channel and the BBC, something she did in 2015 when she failed to qualify for the main event.

She said: “Two years ago I just went down to play and then last year I was part of the commentary team.

“This year I’ve got the two hats on so I’m going to be commentating in the week before I play.

“One thing is does do is give me a lot of practice time.

“Hopefully I don’t get to commentate a lot after I start playing but I am employed until the finals on the 24th.

“I enjoy it though. If I get to the stage where my bowls isn’t at the standard it needs to be hopefully it will be the natural next step.”

Every match is live on YouTube with the BBC coverage beginning on January 17.