Lawn Bowls Skins Tournaments

Skins Tournaments are becoming much more popular, so I thought I would get together a set of rules for tournaments with that name. I was astonished to find that there are many totally different variations on that name so I googled the term and looked for skins games. I found six very different games, all of which would make exciting and interesting club tournaments

Here is a summary of the rules of all the games I discovered. I have listed them in the order in which I discovered them and given each one a name

South Australian Skins

  • In a skins tournament after two or three qualifying games the top two teams play a skins competition to determine how much of the prizemoney each team receives
  • If the prize money for 1st and 2nd totals 900 and they play 6 skins ends, $150 is allocated to each end
  • On the first end a team which scores 2 or more wins the $150. Otherwise it jackpots to the next end
  • On the last end the winner of the end gets the current jackpot

  • Usually the third team would play skins against the fourth, 5th against 6th etc until the prizemoney runs out. Sometimes every team plays skins games for some prize

    For a full description of such a tournament click here

    Tiger Skins (as played in the Tiger Tournament in Hong Kong). This is a scoring system

    In 2013 I took part in the Tiger Bowls tournaments in Hongkong where they use this innovativescoring system which kept the interest of all 72 teams to the end of the two day fours tournament. In this tournament on the first day we played six games of eight ends and this is how it was scored

  • In each game after 3 ends two points were allocated to the team scoring mosts shots (or one each for a draw)
  • This was repeated for ends 4 to 6 and for ends 7 and 8
  • The team winning overall was given an additional two points

  • Hence for each game the teams shared 8 points, with the winner getting 4,6,or 8 and the loser 0,2,or 4

    This is a great way to score any tournament with 4 or more games, because a team losing a game narrowly can still be the winner. For a full description of the two day Tiger Tournament click here

    Julian Haines Skins

  • In a skins game 4 players are allocated a rink to play and compete against each other for an hour and a half. You play against three others in the first game then another three in the second and three more in the third.

  • There are no dead ends. The jack will be re-spotted on the 2 metre mark any time the end is killed. If the spot is taken, it will be placed 6 inches behind the bowl or bowls on the spot. If dead ends were replayed there would be so much testosterone being used that too many ends may never be completed. One drive per player per end is permitted and If you breach this rule the penalty is to sit out the next end.

  • There are two ways in which a skin can be scored.
    1. When one player holds shot on two successive ends he/she has scored a skin. If he/she then holds shot on a third successive end he/she scores another skin and so on.
    2. If a player holds First and Second shot on any end played he/she scores a skin for that end and also, because he/she has won the end and a skin by holding the shot, he/she can also score another skin on the following end if he/she holds shot on that end also.

  • The player attempting to win a skin will have 3 others attempting to stop him/her winning the next end, and scoring on 2 successive ends is quite difficult.

  • In one day we play 3 skins games, at the end of the day the player who has scored the most skins for the day will be the overall winner.

  • If there is a tie for first or second we will go to a one-end playoff. There may be 3 or more but still a roll off is played.

  • You will be given a scorecard to record skins won and you are asked to get another bowler from the rink to sign each skin won as authentication. No signature no skin.

  • This came from a post by Bushman in Julian Haines Bowls

    Elimination Skins This is probably the most commonly played skins game

  • There can be can up to 4 players per rink
  • Each player has 4 bowls per player
  • Played as a normal game of singles with player holding shot establishing mat placement and length to play
  • On each end the player with the bowl the longest distance away from the jack has their bowl removed for the remainder of the game
  • Player with the bowl the second longest distance away from the jack has the last bowl on the next end.
  • Bowls cannot be driven or run out of head. A jack moved more than 2 mat lengths is returned to its original position
  • The skin is won by the last player to have a bowl in play

    These rules came from Mulgrave Country Club

    I found similar rules on other sites. The best of these was written by Mark Dickinson from St Helens Tasmania. This is a very comprehensive set of conditions of play for a weekly game St Helens Skins

  • South African Skins

  • Opponents are drawn and allocated rinks.
  • Each end has a certain amount of money allocated to it, perhaps less for the first few ends and more later in the game. One end is played on all rinks
  • The team scoring the most shots in that end wins the money. If more than one team has the same number of shots, then the money is carried forward to the next end
  • The team winning the end moves to the East (North) and the team losing the end moves to the West (or south) or to the other end of the green
  • If the skin is not won on the last end the money goes to the team which won the most ends (or shots up)

  • From Bowls South Africa -There are lots of very good ideas on this site read more

    I put in the two rules in red because the instructions given had no way to deal with the situation where the skin was not won on the last end. Having the teams move gets over the enormous luck of the draw and increases the fun of the game.

    This seems to me to be a great tournament for up to 12 teams playing on one green. I am itching to try it!!

    Keysborough Skins

    This could be played in an afternoon as two bowl bowl triples or thee bowl pairs but could be used in any format. it is fast and furious!

  • You play 15 games of 2 ends with no dead ends
  • After each game the team winning the second end moves to the East (North) and the team losing the end moves to the West (South)
  • Each win gains them a 'Skin'
  • Every skin is a guaranteed payment of a fixed amount
  • A draw or loss pays nothing.The highest number of skins determines the winner and runner up at the end of the day . Shots up are used to separate if equal numbers of skins.

  • Google led me to this on the Keysborough Bowling Club web site. I put in the second rule to avoid the horrendous problem of giving teams a 15 round draw