Do you remember that particular game when your opponent’s bowls performance seemed to be intolerably good?

You felt somehow inferior … or intimidated .. or some other emotion, from the very first moment they stood on the mat to bowl the first trial end.

It was almost as if every time they picked up their bowls that they did it with something that could only be described as ….togetherness. They stepped onto the mat with what appeared to be eager anticipation.

Their bowls went on to perform exactly as they expected them to, delivery after delivery, end after end.

As the match continued you began to experience a a niggling doubt that some other make or model of bowl might be out there that would, if only you were lucky enough to find it, help you to bowl with such confidence.

Niggling doubts are one of the most performance defeating feelings a bowler can have. They can be about anything – your appearance, your team-mates, your recent run of form or lack of it, or something elsewhere in your life that’s bugging you.

Yet the feel of a much-loved bowl in hand can do much to wipe away niggles that might otherwise distract your mind and spoil your play.

So if, with bowl in hand, you feel warmth and confidence – then you probably are in love with your bowls.

But if the idea of receiving an emotional fillip from your bowls sounds crazy; if, in fact, you lug them around with you like so much shopping in a bag then you are probably not emotionally bonding with your bowls and that means it’s time to start looking for love!