Rising Acle star Daniel ‘Spike’ Seabourne shocks the world bowls high rollers

Daniel Seabourne (16) from Acle Bowls club beat world number 1 Bowler Greg Harlow at the weekend on

Daniel Seabourne (16) from Acle Bowls club beat world number 1 Bowler Greg Harlow at the weekend on his way to winning a national three's tournament. - Credit: Nick Butcher

World indoor singles champion Bex Field and current world number one Greg Harlow had no answer to the inspired play of Acle bowls starlet Daniel Seabourne.

The 16-year-old made a serious statement of his future intent on Saturday as the boy known as ‘Spike’ took the Premier Threes Bowls title at Boston Indoor Bowls Club ahead of some major stars of the world bowls circuit.

And he had to do it the hard way too, working his way through the morning’s qualifying group with a walkover against Simon Skelton and a win over event organiser and club manager Simon Reeson before dumping ladies’ Potters champion and Norfolk Bowling Club star Field out of the competition with a 2-1 victory.

Current England international Nicky Brett was next to fall to Spike’s sharp woods, after the former Flegg High School pupil produced a stunning show to defeat the City of Ely man 2-0 in the semi-finals. That set up a final against Harlow – the leading light of the world indoor circuit at present.

Yet Brett’s Ely team-mate found his fate similarly sealed, as Seabourne defied his rivals’ experience and took his greatest scalp to date – winning 2-0 and without dropping a single shot.

The win left “proud” parents Tony and Clare in tears. Daniel has previous too, taking up the sport at the age of 12 with Acle Bowls Club and at the same age taking the fours title at the Great Yarmouth Festival.“I was just going for the experience really; I was expecting to get a couple of games and then go back home and I don’t know what happened really – I just kept winning,” said champion Seabourne. “I wanted to make the most of it, I got off to a good start and kept focus on the games really. It was only afterwards that I was thinking about it and I really couldn’t explain it. I just kept getting closer and closer to the jack. It was strange really, I wasn’t expecting anything like that.”

Seabourne is not just £1,000 better off in terms of prize money following his Boston exploits – he earned another £1,000 thanks to his grandad who lives at Rollesby. Michael Simpson agreed to double whatever winnings Daniel sealed in Boston – expecting it to be some way short of the four-figure top prize his grandson earned. While Daniel was reluctant to leave his grandad so out of pocket, Simpson has agreed to use the money to pay for his grandson’s travel expenses, accommodation and entry fees.