‘Lincolnshire Bombers’ are going for gold!

Derek, Belinda, Soss and Nigel at the bowling alley.
Derek, Belinda, Soss and Nigel at the bowling alley.

A visually impaired ten-pin team have bowled the competition over to secure a place in the national winter finals in Wigan next month.

The Lincolnshire Bombers, made up of Nigel Limb, Belinda Barker, Soss Hallewell and Derek Croucher, formed last year with the dream of making the finals.

The National Blind Ten Pin Bowling Association’s winter league is open to teams of three, with the Bombers playing with a reserve.

Despite many of the players being new to the sport, the team finished in the top twelve out of 40 teams, which bought them a spot last year’s final.

The team then stormed into third place - and they’re hoping to go at least one better this time around.

Nigel Limb joined the team as part of his recovery after a sand racing accident on a speedway motorbike.

On December 27, 2015,
 Nigel suffered a serious brain injury which left him in a 
coma for 11 days.

As a result of his accident, Nigel has also been left 
partially sighted.

Nigel had never bowled 
before - but now it’s his 
passion.

He told the Rasen Mail: “After my accident, I struggled to get out of the house.

“The Lincoln and Lindsey Blind Society suggested I joined the bowling team.

“I took some persuading, but since joining The Lincolnshire Bombers I’ve never looked back.

“It’s been a huge part of my rehabilitation.

“Bowling has helped me meet new friends and give me something to talk about with my family.

“Moreover, it proves that I’m still independent!

“ I can walk to the bus stop, catch a bus, have a wonderful time with friends and get 
myself home again.

“I’m just as able to do this as before my accident.”

The team has ramped up practice session frequency, meeting once per week to play against each other, as well as other teams in the league.

They hope to at least maintain the form they had at the last final - where Nigel says they were ‘on fire’.

“We scored 14 strikes between us,” he told the Rasen Mail, “and I scored six of them!”

Nigel said: “The beauty of blind bowling is that really, the only difference to the non-disabled game is the fact the 
barriers are up.

“We don’t have any aids - it’s virtually the same game.”

The team is currently 
trying to raise funds to help pay for their trip to Wigan, with £300 coming out of Nigel’s own pocket last year.

To make a donation towards their trip, visit https://bit.ly/2TP1W3n