World Bowls Championships to go ahead in Christchurch despite earthquake

Paul Foster and Alex Marshall
Scotland's Paul Foster and Alex Marshall, who won gold at the 2014 Commonwealth Games, are also the reigning world pairs champions

The World Bowls Championships will go ahead in Christchurch, despite the earthquake that struck New Zealand.

The venues for the quadrennial event for outdoor bowls are just over 100 miles from the epicentre of the 7.8 magnitude quake which struck on Sunday.

The championships start on 29 November and run until 11 December.

"Everything's been checked out, we feel it is safe, but there is constant monitoring," World Bowls director Garry Collins told BBC Radio Guernsey.

"If we feel at some point that we expect more of these things then we'll push that button and the championships will be halted."

Two people were killed and warships from Australia, Canada and the United States have been brought in to help the New Zealand navy evacuate people form the town of Kaikoura, which was near the epicentre of the quake.

Christchurch is still rebuilding from a major earthquake in 2011 which killed 185 people and caused millions of dollars in damage.

Over 100 players from 35 countries are set to compete in the event, which alongside the Commonwealth Games is seen as one of the most important tournaments in outdoor bowls.

"There was no damage to the facilities we have in our control," added Guernsey-based Collins, who was elected onto the board of the sport's governing body, World Bowls, last month.

"We've had assurances from the people on the ground and from our officials that everything's okay."

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