HISTORY OF THE O.B.A. TOURNAMENT
O.B.A. Past Singles Winners
In 1886, 129 years ago, eight menís fours teams traveled from as far away as Toronto to participate in a tournament held in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario. The N.O.T.L. LBC had been founded nine years earlier in 1877 and remains one of the oldest clubs in Canada. Ten teams participated in 1887, and twelve teams were gathered for the 1888 event.
It was at this time the assembled teams decided they should form an association which they named the Ontario Bowls Association and decided to designate their tournament the O.B.A. Tournament in 1889.
The tournament moved around over the years and settled in Hamilton Roselawn in or around 1925. This was the year that the Roselawn Club of Hamilton was built, boasting two full-sized greens (The first official-sized greens in Canada).
Just five years later, the 1st ever British Empire Games were staged in Hamilton, and the lawn bowling event was hosted by the Roselawn Club in 1930.
The O.B.A. Tournament may, indeed, be the oldest continuously run lawn bowls tournament in the World.
Keep in mind that the first Scottish Championships were not held until 1894, and the first English Championships not until 1905.
In recent years the tournament had mainly been a ladies/mixed pairs affair held at Roselawn. The Open Singles began again in 2004 and was held at Churchill Fields in Hamilton from 2004 to 2007 until the clubís closing. This left the Burlington Lawn Bowling Club and VSM Abrasives to carry the gauntlet forward, and put the VSM O.B.A. OPEN SINGLES back in the limelight. 2016 will mark the 7th year that VSM has acted as the sponsor of the O.B.A. Open Singles.
"Good bowling, and may lady luck smile upon you!" Dave Burrows, Burlington LBC.
First Commonwealth Games played at Roselawn LBC, Hamilton, 1930.
O.B.A. Past Singles Winners
1929 Dr. A.E. Walkey, Hamilton Argyle
1930 Dr. A.E. Walkey, Hamilton Argyle
1938 R. Bunton, Hamilton Roselawn
1939 - 1948 No reports
1949 H. Tufford, Beamsville
1950 J. Hannah, Hamilton Fernleigh
1951 W.H. Collins, Hamilton Argyle
1952 R. Schmidt, Hamilton Calvary
1953 F. J. McQueen, Hamilton Fernleigh
1954 Dr. A.E. Walkey, Hamilton Argyle
1955 Neil Salkeld, Caledonia
1956 D. Witmar, Hamilton Victoria
1957 Jack Livingstone, Aldershot
1958 W. McQueen, Hamilton Fernleigh
1959 John Jones, Hamilton Roselawn
1960 Norm Pomfret, Ontario Hospital
1961 J. C. McArthur, Oakville
1962- 2003 Not Held
2004 Lock Morgan, Ancaster
2005 Peter Clarke, Hamilton Churchill Fields
2006 Lock Morgan, Ancaster
2007 Charlie Lyle, Mount Hamilton
2008 Not held
2009 Steve McKerihen, Etobicoke
2010 Frank Dinardo, Brampton
2011 Bob Bester, Hanover
2012 Kevin Jones, London Elmwood
2013 Greg Wilson, Burlington
2014 David Llewellyn, Markham.
2015 Jeff Harding, Etobicoke.
2016 Shirley Ko, Agincourt (first female winner).
Lawn Bowling at the Brant House, Burlington, Ontario, 1912.