Meet the players: An interview with Andy Thomson MBE
Andy Thomson MBE is a world-class bowls player who has represented both Scotland and England in the sport. He won his first Championship at just 16 years old and has been World Indoor Singles champion three times and World Indoor Pairs champion three times.
We caught up with Andy to find out how he got into bowls and why he’s excited for the Just World Indoor Bowls Championships 2019.
1. How did you first get into playing bowls and how long have you been playing for?
I started playing in Scotland about 50 years ago! My father used to play and although I played other sports I started to enjoy the challenge of playing bowls. I managed to win my local Club Championship and after that I was fortunate to win a number of tournaments which got me into the sport more seriously.
2. How does it feel to be at the level you are, and how hard have you had to work to reach that level?
I have been very fortunate to have been playing the sport for many years at the highest level. I am the oldest player in the top 16 and have been lucky to have remained at this level for many years. I still want to do well and still have a strong passion for the sport. I continue to practice as I still want to be playing well against the top players. I have in the last few years been involved more in coaching roles at all levels, and look forward to devoting more of my time to this part of the sport. I also manage the England Indoor Junior team.
3. Many say that bowls is a sport for all. Would you encourage people to have a go at playing bowls?
I do agree that our sport can be played by all ages. That is one of the many attractions that allows all players regardless of age to play our sport.
4. Do you prefer playing indoor or lawn bowls?
I have been slightly more successful at the indoor game but still enjoy the challenges of the outdoor game.
5. How many bowls do you have and what brand are they?
I am employed by Taylor Bowls and play with Taylor Ace size 4.
6. Are you excited to be competing in the Just 2019 World Indoor Bowls Championships?
I always enjoy playing in the World Championships as it is the tournament the players want to win more than any other. The crowds and atmosphere are very special at Potters so it is always the highlight of the Indoor season.
7. Are there any other competitors you’re excited to see play? Or any matches you’re particularly excited about?
It is always good to see the qualifiers playing against the more established top players, and good to see an ‘underdog’ doing well. There looks like there are a number of difficult first round ties for the top 16 players so it should be good watching for the spectators from day one.
8. How have you been preparing for the competition?
I play in National Competitions throughout the Indoor season so I am kept busy. I will however practice more as we get closer to the Championships.
9. What do you enjoy the most about competing at the World Indoor Bowls Championships?
The crowds and atmosphere are special from day one, which is what all the players want.
10. Do you have any predictions for the Championships that you’d like to share?
It is always difficult to predict a winner at the Worlds. Mark Dawes was superb last year, Stewart Anderson played very well in winning the Scottish Open a few weeks ago, so predicting is very difficult. I can predict however that the standard of bowling will be unbelievable.
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