Bowls: Schuback falls at the first

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The Independent Online
IAN SCHUBACK, the defending singles champion from Australia, was beaten in the first round of the Midland Bank World Indoor Championships at Preston yesterday. Mike Nicolle, of Guernsey, took the No 1 seed to the final set in his 7-1, 3-7, 7-6, 1-7, 7-2 victory.

England's Tony Allcock has emerged as favourite to recapture the title he last won in 1987. The No 3 seed swept aside the challenge of Jersey's David Le Marquand, 7-3, 7-2, 7-1.

Allcock, whose task has been made easier by the demise of Schuback and Andy Thomson, faces Scotland's Jim Muir for a place in the quarter-finals. But Allcock was quick to point out that Muir holds a couple of victories over him. 'I never underestimate my opponents. There have been so many shocks this week that really they are no longer shocks,' he said.