GRAHAM Shadwell has made a fine start to the 2018/19 indoor bowling season and came close to lifting the top prize on the Open Singles circuit at the Moonfleet Open tournament.

The Trowbridge bowler and former England international, representing Clarrie Dunbar, was beaten in the final of the tournament in Weymouth last Sunday by fellow Wiltshire outdoor county team colleague Neil Smith, losing both sets 2-0 (11-2 and 6-5).

Despite the loss Shadwell still had the consolation of collecting the runners-up prize of £400 while Smith pocketed the jackpot of £1,000.

Shadwell opened on the Saturday in round one with a comfortable 2-0 win (9-1,13-0) over Dolphin (Poole) player Malcolm Potts.

But he was pushed all the way in round two by Andy Moore (North Wilts), coming from a set down to win on a tie-break 2-0.

Shadwell won 2-1 (5-6, 5-2, 2-0) to book a third round tie against Joe Wahnon, which he won 5-4, 7-3.

In Sunday’s quarter-finals Shadwell beat Trevor Roberts (Egerton Park, Bexhill, Sussex) 2-0 (8-5, 8-2).

However, he had to pull out all the stops in the semi-final against Chipping Norton’s Martin Shepherd.

Shadwell lost the first set 7-1 but bounced back taking the second 9-4 to force a tie breaker which he won on the third and deciding leg for 2-1 (1-7, 9-4, 2-1) victory and a place in the final against Swindon Westlecot’s Neil Smith.

The final saw Shadwell struggle in the first set possibly after a very close and hard semi-final going down 11-2.

He rallied in the second set taking the match to the seventh and last end decider before going down 6-5.