Well, after much jiggling, juggling and debate, the dates for the 2014 Masters has been set.

Due to clashes with two big Bowls Australia events being the Trans Tasman, and then the National Sides championship, we have decided to set the dates as follows:

April 5th to April 10th: Sectional qualifications (there will be a rest day on Tuesday 8th)

April 11, 12 and 13th will be the knockout rounds.

There were many reasons for this change, amongst them now not clashing with QLD and some NSW premier league seasons. In addition, pennant is done and dusted in Victoria.

We do realise that there is a clash with State Champions week in Bendigo, but again, we simply can't accomodate everyone, and we saw this as the lesser of all evils. Having said that, all regional winners have to be decided by around 5th March which would allow people time to still enter the Masters or not should they choose.

With these changes also, it will allow us to play the prime matches / finals over the final weekend of the 12th and 13th instead of always having to finish on a Friday, so hopefully drawing some bigger spectator numbers than previous.

Prize money remains the same at $20,000 but we have redistributed the money to now include players knocked out in the round of 16. The breakdown is now as follows:

WINNER $8,000
RUNNER UP $4,000
ROUND OF 16 $200

The entry fee has also gone up to $40 this year, but this will include two free calcutta raffle tickets (value $5 each) with the Calcutta being held on the Thursday night instead of the usual Tuesday (again, hopefully seeing more people attend).

Anyway, as they say, we can only but try and we are certainly aware of not wanting to tread water each year with the tournament going stale.

Entry forms are now available online at http://www.rubc.com.au/masters-singles/

Merry Christmas to all and a safe holiday season.

Wellsy :get outa here: