Do you fancy playing more pétanque but don’t know where to start? Don’t worry! There are a variety of extra playing opportunities available to club members:
- GWR and PE competitions
- Local leagues
- Local competitions
- Inter-club matches
- Playing abroad
- The Friendship games
Individual & team competitions
All club members are also members of the Great Weston Region of Pétanque England. That means you are eligible to enter GWR and PE competitions. These are usually advertised via email. The GWR competitions are usually played on a Sunday. Our equivalent club competitions are often organised for the day before so that you can get some practice in! Entry to GWR events is via an entry form on the GWR website, https://www.gwrpetanque.com/. There will be an entry fee that is used to fund the prizes and cover administration costs.
You may think that you’re not good enough to compete in these but you might be surprised – we have several national-level players in the club. Even if you don’t do that well, these competitions are a great way to meet new people, gain experience and learn from more experienced players.
GWR Winter Doubles League
This league starts in the late October and runs fortnightly on a Sunday through to (typically) late March with a gap over Christmas. Teams of two or more players compete in typically ten rounds of doubles matches, with three games in each session.
GWR Inter-Regional Qualifiers
Each year, GWR sends 12 teams to the PE inter-regional triples championships that are held over a weekend in September. Anyone is welcome to form a team of GWR members and compete to be one of those 12 teams. If (as usual) there are more than twelve teams entered they play off in a qualifying competition held over three rounds of matches.
Each team can have up to four members, of which three must attend the inter-regional championships. This year the championships were held in Melton Mowbray.
All club members are also paid-up members of PE so you are eligible to enter competitions as advertised by PE from time to time – usually via email. There is also a national playing calendar published on the PE website that lists all of the competitions. Entry to PE competitions is via an entry form on the PE LoveAdmin portal, https://app.loveadmin.com/Login/1C50F99173EA94B76A3C215CDCF9DC0A.htm.
NB that if you play in a PE team competition, all members of your team must be in matching tops – PE are very keen on their dress code! (See the PE web site for this.) If you have club shirts then that’s the obvious choice but any matching tops will do.
Individual and team competitions
PE holds a series of individual and team competitions that are open to teams of PE members. You just form a team of PE members and enter!
Champion of Champion competitions
If you a winner or runner-up in any of the GWR individual and team competitions then you will qualify to represent GWR at the equivalent national ‘Champion of Champions’ event.
The Euro cup
The Euro Cup is a national inter-club competition. Our club enters two teams of (I believe) nine players each year and these teams play a number of home and away matches against other clubs. There should be news about these in the club newsletter, emails asking for volunteers to join the teams or just approach Mike Woodward if you’d like to join the squad.
There are two local leagues
This is a local league run by our club and played (as you might guess) weekly on Thursday evenings over the summer months. It’s open to teams of four or more people and in 2019 there were over 30 teams organised in five divisions. Many of the teams have CoBPC members in them and use Larkhall as their home venue. There is a small entry fee. You will play home and away games but won’t have to travel far as all teams must be based within ten miles of Bath.
This is a very friendly league and not played too seriously unless you make it into the 1st Division. The details are:
- Minimum team size: Four
- Games: Once a week on a Thursday evening (7pm start)
- Format: Two rounds – first two games of doubles, then a singles and a triples game.
This is a league organised within the GWR region, with a wider geographic spread that the Thursday League. The club enters two teams, one currently managed by Mike Woodward and the other by Trevor Glenton. There should be news about these in the club newsletter, emails asking for volunteers to join the teams or just approach Mike or Trevor if you’d like to play. The format is
- Minimum team size: Six
- Games: Once a week. Most teams play on a Wednesday, 7:30pm start
- Format: Three rounds – the first two rounds are triples, then a round of doubles.
Teams are selected based upon people’s availability to play so you don’t have to play every week, just say you’re available if you fancy a game. Captains select their team each week from the players who are available, typically selecting up to nine players to allow for last-minute problems and to give more players a game.
Local club competitions
Other local clubs run open competitions that you may hear about via the club newsletter. Typically, these are not club events so just find one or two other people to play with and enter a team.
We arrange occasional friendly games against other clubs. These will be advertised beforehand so just say if you’d like to play.
In the past there have been a number of trips abroad each year facilitated by people within the club, for instance to play in the Guernsey Open competition. Details of these will be advertised beforehand. Speak to the nominated contact if you are interested in going. Some regular events are:
- May Bank Holiday: Jersey – the Carrefour Club Open triples
- August Bank Holiday: Cork, Ireland – the ‘Frankfield Blitz’ doubles
- Mid-September: The Guernsey Open triples
There’s help and advice available from the veteran travellers about travel and accommodation arrangements. If you don’t have a pre-formed team to play in, just register your interest and we can help you form a team with others in the same situation.
The Friendship games
This is a weekend of friendly play organised amongst a group of clubs from different countries coming together to play each other. It typically takes place in mid-August. The venue rotates each year – it will be Villingen, Germany in 2022 – and we’re expecting to host the event in 2023. You will hear lots about this nearer the time.