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Advice and Guidance for Markers

There are four main reasons for having a marker in Singles games: The first and most obvious is to record the score on both the scorecard and the scoreboard; the second is to provide information about the head to the players; the third is to physically measure when there is uncertainty about which bowl, or bowls, is closest to the jack; the fourth, often overlooked, is to ensure that the game is played in accordance with the Laws of the game.  

In a singles match the players take the game seriously: the marker should do exactly the same.  First as matter of courtesy, second, (perhaps for future reference), to study the individual player's style, tactics and capabilities, and third, to learn more about the game, even if only what not to do.


Before Play Begins.

Ensure you know the rules of the competition you are marking.

Ensure you have the necessary equipment, e.g. pen, score card, chalk, measure and wedges.

Introduce yourself to the competitors and enter their names on the scorecard if they are not preprinted.

Establish which bowls belong to which player and check that all bear the imprint of current and valid stamp where appropriate.

Indicate that you will only answer questions from the player who has possession of the rink.  Advise the players that you intend to mark touchers when they come to rest.

During Play.

Ensure the mat is properly placed in the centre of the rink, and that the jack is also centred at least 23 metres from the front of the mat before the first player delivers their first bowl.

Stand still behind the head and to one side of the rink.  Do not obscure the player’s view of the boundary markers.  Do not allow your shadow to fall on the jack.

Do not approach the head unless it is to mark a toucher, remove invalid chalk marks, or determine your reply to a question from one of the players.  Mark the position of the jack or touchers in the ditch with markers on the bank.  With the permission of the players, (obtained before the game), remove any “dead bowls” from the ditch.

Be accurate when giving distances.  If asked which bowl is shot, and you are unsure, say so, e.g. “I am not sure, it looks like a measure to me.”

Do not volunteer information.

Only answer specific questions, but use common sense when giving your answer.

Only measure shots when asked to do so by the players.

If you are unable to come to a decision satisfactory to both players, CALL AN UMPIRE.  If an official umpire has not been appointed you must select one.  If there is no one present who is capable of acting as umpire, inform the players they must either agree between themselves, or accept your decision.

Do not disturb or break the head, this should only be done by the players or umpire.

Before marking the score card, make sure that the players have agreed the number of shots and that you know which player has been awarded the shot or shots.

Inform the players of the state of the score at the completion of each end.

Remove the mat from the previous end as necessary.


After the Game.

Complete the scorecard, have it signed by both players and return it to the designated competition steward.



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