Ballymoney’s Gary Kelly has qualified for the prestigious World Professional Indoor Singles Bowling Championship at Potters Leisure Resort in Norfolk, England in January.
The event, brings together the world’s top bowlers in the event which is televised on the BBC and streamed live on YouTube.
Gary faces a tough challenge as he comes up against reigning world singles champion and six times champion, Alex Marshall. This match against the World number 3 bowler will take place on Monday 18th January and will be televised and streamed live adding to the pressure on the Ballymoney man.
Gary, who is no stranger to success on the big stage qualified for the World Championships through the Irish world bowls qualifier competition held at County Antrim Indoor Bowling Club on 10th and 11th October. Speaking about his qualification Gary commented: “Obviously it is a very tough challenge ahead of me against Alex Marshall but I am really looking forward to it.
“Unfortunately when I played at the world championships back in 2008 I had a narrow defeat by Alex Marshall in a tie break. Since then I have gained more experience playing in major competitions against some of the best players in the world and hopefully this will help me to gain a positive result.
“I’ve played at the world professional indoor bowling championships three times, so this will be my fourth opportunity. Hopefully I can use that experience to my advantage.”
With his previous experience at the championships combined with his obvious talents and skill, Gary will be hoping to dispose of Marshall and proceed in the competition.
“Alex Marshall is the most respected and most successful bowler in the world. So it’s a massive challenge.
“My hopes and aim for the championship are to win it. Yes it is ambitious but I believe in my ability and I have to go into the competition with the mentality I am capable of winning the competition.
“Obviously it’s an extremely tough challenge but I have competed at major competitions before and been successful so no reason why I can’t hopefully do it again. Every player has to be treated with respect and like every other competition it’s one game at a time, you can’t look ahead of yourself.”