Jim's View: On pennants and the bowls world
ONE of the grouches you hear every season about pennants - apart from the never-ending whinges that every year turn it into a clubhouse bunfight - is the season is too long.
Most of this season's grades have a 10-week schedule that grows longer with pre-season trial games and if the weather interferes.
Players aren't keen to tie themselves up for a quarter of the year, particularly as in some cases the grade winner has been decided a long time in advance.
It also restricts the time that clubs, district and zone have for events such as championships.
Why can't pennants have two games of a weekend? That would halve the tie-up time. Women bowlers play their pennants twice a week; we do it in championships; many tournaments run for several successive days. There's little to suggest that two successive days of pennants would be too oppressive.
Two grades, the No 4s and No 5s, have byes this year. Byes have the ability to destroy interest in a competition.
Heartening to see that the elevation of 2015 No 2s winner South Lismore to the top grade has been resisted.
Had this followed as a matter of course, the Southies would have had two sides in No 1s, not a desirable prospect.
I've long argued we have too many grades in pennants. It must be an organisational nightmare for NRDBA officials.
The match committee this year had to make three draws because of last-minute developments.
Pennants are disruptive, but any comp that can run for 94 years must have something.