World Bowls Tour awards

AT a glittering finale to the Potters Holidays World Indoor Singles Championship, Scotland's three-time world champion Paul Foster collected two awards at the World Bowls Tour Awards for 2009.

AT a glittering finale to the Potters Holidays World Indoor Singles Championship, Scotland's three-time world champion Paul Foster collected two awards at the World Bowls Tour Awards for 2009.

The 36-year-old was named the Players' Player of the Year and Player of the Year award.

"I am honoured, firstly to be nominated by my fellow players, then by the awards panel," said an emotional Foster. "This is very special."

Stewart Anderson, the young Scot who became the talk of the championships after becoming the first player at Potters to reach the world final as a qualifier, received the Best Qualifying Performance award.

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In only his second appearance in the championship, the 24-year-old despatched a succession of higher-ranked players, including world number one and record five-time world champion Alex Marshall.

The strength of the younger membership of the Professional Bowls Association (PBA) was further highlighted when England's Robert Chisholm was presented with the Young Player of the Year award.

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The 24-year-old from Newcastle-upon-Tyne made history last year in Swansea when he became the first qualifier to win the Welsh International Open.

Readers of Nationwide Bowler voted Mervyn King, the former world champion from Norfolk, the Fans' Player of the Year, while fellow Englishman Ian Bond, winner of this year's World Pairs title with Andy Thomson, received the award for Shot of the Year.

The award for Performance of the Year was presented to Billy Jackson, the 39-year-old from Lincoln who came through the field of the 2009 World Singles championship at Potters as the 12th seed to win the title for the first time.

Distinguished journalist David Rhys Jones received the award for Services to Bowls. After a successful career as an England international, Rhys Jones moved into the media where he not only covered the game for a wide range of UK and international titles but also became the doyen of BBC TV bowls commentators, a role he held for some 25 years.

Two figures from the world of bowls were honoured with Lifetime Achievement awards. Ken Fawcett, who will retire at the end of this season after nine years as the WBT's Tournament Director, received the award from Potters Holidays' Chairman Brian Potter.

Welsh veteran John Price, the 1990 champion who celebrated his 25th appearance in the World Singles championship this year at Potters - where he reached the quarter-finals - received his award from PBA Chairman David Corkill.

In the final presentation of the night, celebrated Scottish bowler David Gourlay was inducted into the WBT Hall of Fame. The only player to have won all national indoor titles in Scotland, the 43-year-old from Glasgow went on to top the WBT world rankings for a record six seasons and appear in 14 WBT finals - more than any other bowler.

Fellow inductees of the WBT Hall of Fame - launched at the inaugural WBT awards in 2008 - are three times world champions Richard Corsie, MBE; Tony Allcock, MBE; Paul Foster; and David Bryant, CBE; twice champion Andy Thomson; and five-time winner Alex Marshall, MBE.

2009 Awards Winners:

Player of the Year: Paul Foster (Scotland)

Young Player of the Year: Robert Chisholm (England)

Best Qualifying Performance: Stewart Anderson (Scotland)

Players' Player of the Year: Paul Foster (Scotland)

Fans' Player of the Year: Mervyn King (England)

Shot of the Year: Ian Bond (England)

Performance of the Year: Billy Jackson (England)

Services to Bowls: David Rhys Jones

Lifetime Achievement: Ken Fawcett John Price (Wales)

WBT Hall of Fame: David Gourlay (Scotland)

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