The World Indoor Bowls Championship is an annual indoor bowls competition. It was first held in 1979 as a singles competition only. In 1986, the men’s pairs event was added and two years later, the women’s singles event was created. In 2004, the mixed pairs competition was also added.
Alex Marshall of Scotland is the winningest indoor bowler in this competition with a total of six singles titles won. His countryman Paul Foster is next with five titles while a third Scottish bowler in Richard Corsie leads a pack of indoor bowlers with three singles titles. Five out of the last seven Open Singles winner are from Scotland.
Last January, Stewart Anderson defeated surprise finalist Simon Skelton in the final to win his second Open Singles title at the World Indoor Bowls Championship. Interestingly, Anderson is just third in the current odds board behind 2016 winner Nick Brett and 2017 champion Paul Foster.
Here are the current odds to win the Open Singles championship at the William Hill as of 7/12/19:
Who Are The Favorites?
Nick Brett won the Open Singles championship at the 2016 World Indoor Bowls Championships. The 45-year old from Peterborough in England was also won back to back Scottish International Open titles in 2013 and 2014. Brett was also the winner of the 2015 International Open. At the World Championships, he also won gold medals in the 2014 Pairs and 2017 Mixed Pairs competitions. Brett was upset by surprise qualifier Simon Skelton in the semifinals of the 2019 Just World Indoor Bowls Championship held last January.
Paul Foster is the second most prolific bowler in the history of the World Indoor Bowls Championships. The 46-year old from Irvine, Scotland has won the Open Singles championship five times in six appearances in the final. Foster’s only loss was in 2013, to Stewart Anderson. The 4th ranked bowler in the world, Foster last won this event in 2017 and was eliminated in the second round the last time around.
Stewart Anderson is the defending champion in the Open Singles competition at the World Indoor Bowls Championship. This year’s win was his third overall at the Championships as Anderson also won this event in 2013 and won the Open Pairs in 2016 together with Darren Burnett. Anderson also won the 2018 Scottish International Open.
Greg Harlow is the #1 ranked indoor Bowler according to the Word Bowls Tour rankings. The 50-year old from England also held the top ranking in 2006, 2012 and 2017 but hasn’t been as lucky in the World Championships. Still, Harlow won the Open Singles in 2010 and has two gold medals for the 2007 Mixed Pairs title and the 2014 Men’s Pairs title.
Alex Marshall holds the record for most Open Singles victories at the World Indoor Bowls Championship. The 52-year old from Edinburgh, Scotland has won a total of six singles titles, the last of which came in 2015. Marshall paired with Paul Foster to win the Men’s Pair gold at the 2019 World Indoor Bowls Championship. That win was his fourth with Foster and fifth overall in the Men’s Pair event.
The betting favorite Nick Brett was upset in the semifinals of the 2019 Just World Indoor Bowls Championship and has only won the Open Singles once in 2016. Alex Marshall has six wins in the Open Singles but he has not made it past round 2 in the last two years. Greg Harlow is the #1 ranked indoor Bowler but he’s not won this event since 2010. Paul Foster has won five out of six finals appearances but after his win in 2017, he was eliminated in the second round in 2018 and 2019.
This is tough to predict because there is no one bowler who has been dominant in this event. In the last 10 years, only Paul Foster and Stewart Anderson have won more than once and the gap between their first and second titles was six years. I think this goes down to current form and since this is still over 6 months away, I will reserve my pick when the majority of the 2019 events are done with. But right now, if you ask me, I will have to go with Paul Foster who’s made the final thrice since 2011 and has two wins this decade. Prediction: Paul Foster