City of Bath Petanque Club made a pilgrimage to the birthplace of the sport last week when they paid their annual visit to Aix-en-Provence.
Members took on their counterparts at the Boulomaine Club in the French town of La Ciotat, famous as the birthplace of cinema and the place where the first game of petanque was played in 1906.
It was part of a busy week for the Queens Square-based club, who also caught up with old friends in Bath’s twin town of Aix-en-Provence and also played against the Cercle Club at Tholonet.
The tour was City of Bath’s second venture abroad this year, having also visited Holland during Easter to establish a playing relationship with their counterparts in Alkmaar.
Club captain Chris Garratt said:
While we hope that our newly-established relationship with the petanque clubs in Alkmaar will develop into a thriving one in the future, there is nothing like the challenge of meeting the French at their own game on their home territory.
In recent times, we have learned a few hard lessons from our adventures to Provence. However, it’s been great how they have been so pleased to see us having a serious go at their sport. They have been so very encouraging and this has enabled our own standard of play to progress significantly – the City of Bath Club is fast becoming a force to be reckoned with.
The club would like to thank its local sponsors, including John Moore Sports, The Raven and Bath Aqua Glass.