Belfast trio Clifford Craig, Roy Battersby and John McCullough are only days away from appearing on the game’s biggest stage – the World Indoor Championships at Potters Leisure Resort.
Craig will feature in the singles, while his team mates will have the responsibility of playing in the pairs.
McCullough and Battersby represented Ireland in last season’s world pairs, having won the PBA qualifier at the Baker Stadium.
They were deprived a spot in the final 16 when beaten in the play-off by Australia’s Ben Twist and Karen Murphy.
But for Craig, his appeareance on the famous blue portable rink will bridge a 24 year gap.
The big Belfast electricial comes up against Scotland’s Darrenn Burnett in his opening match on January 14.
“I couldn’t have been handed a tougher start – big Darren is now fourth in the world rankings,” claims Craig.
“But I’ve waited a long time for this opportunity and I don’t intend to let it pass me by without giving it my best shot.
“The last time I played in the world singles was back in 1989. The tournament was under the auspicious of the British Isles Indoor Bowls Council back then.
“The World Bowls Tour wasn’t even up and running at that point.
“I remember being beaten by Wynn Richards.
“The year before that, Hugh Duff defeated me . . . and Richard Corsie defeated me in the UK singles. It seems like a life time ago.”
Craig, eliminated a posse of his international colleagues in the PBA qualifier, including David Corkill, Simon Martin, Gary Kelly and Mark McPeak, before claiming his spot on the big stage.
“To be honest, I couldn’t have hand picked tougher opponents,” he adds.