Lawn Bowls / Confident Israel Ready to Face Irish Tests

DUBLIN - Ahead of its scheduled test matches with Ireland this week, Israel played three warm-up games with strong Irish provincial teams that included British Isles internationals. With three wins under its belt, it will go in to the test matches in a confident mood.

Israel won its first encounter against the Old Beach Club 2 1/2 - 1 1/2. Raymond Sher won his triples 19-15, Chaim Shefer peeled at 15 all, Colin Silberstein won 22-5 in the pairs and Shefer lost 15-14 in the fours.

In its second encounter, Israel faced an Irish provincial side with three British Isles internationals, including Clifford Craig, who only a week earlier was on Ireland's team for the England Lawn Bowls Association's Centenary Tournament.

Craig's trio won 17-9 against Raymond Sher's side, while Shefer's team had an excellent 17-13 win against an Irish trio skippered by Ireland international Barry Browne. In the fours game, Craig's side was again in powerful form, this time winning 22-10 against Shefer's team. The day's honors were shared however when Colin Silberstein and Arie Ben Dor won the pairs 15-14 to tie the clash at 2-2 after collecting a six in the last head with a perfect delivery from Silberstein, which trailed the jack.

In its third and final encounter before the test matches, Israel faced a Northern Ireland Provincial Association team. In the triples Raymond Sher, Colin Silberstein and Arie Ben Dor came through with a last head win, 20-18, after level-pegging throughout the game. Chaim Shefer, Boaz Marcus and Tzvika Hadar could not make up for an early deficit of 3-11 in their game and, despite a brave comeback, lost 13-18.

In the fours game, Shefer's trio along with Sher fought back from 0-9 down and then 11-19 and with four heads to play came through to peel at 20 all. In the pairs, Silberstein and Ben Dor after trailing 7-9 came through with accurate bowling to outplay their opponents for a 22-14 win as Israel took the clash 2 1/2 - 1 1/2.