A SEND auctioneer is celebrating a famous world championship victory.

Alastair McCrea, a partner at Ewbank’s Auctioneers, where he runs the entertainment and sporting memorabilia department, helped England’s Short Mat Bowling (ESMBA) 2019 World Fours champions seal a remarkable double when they won the Short Mat Bowls Biennial World Championships in Belgium.

His team-mates were Ben Pay, the team ‘skip’, Steve Buckett and Mitchell Young.

“Coronavirus put paid to the championships two years ago so, although it is now 2022, this was the 2020 World Championships,” Alastair said.

“We still had fewer countries than normal because of COVID, but all of the main contenders were there.”

Now the team are hoping that their outstanding achievement will help raise the profile of the sport further.

“In England we have about 25,000 registered players, but many more who are unregistered,” says Alastair. “Across the world there are around 20 registered associations, so it is a widely popular sport, but one that has simply not caught the media’s eye until now.

“It’s also a sport a lot of young people now play. I started when I was 11 and started winning from the age of 15. I stopped when I moved to England from Northern Ireland at the age of at 18 and didn’t lift a bowl again until I was 30.”

Within four years of restarting, he was an Open Triples Winner, within five a world champion, and he helped his team-mates lift the double World Championship just two years later, the day before his 37th birthday.