Not-so-genteel Tamworth festival lawn bowls competition

IT'S not quite cricket, but they're still wearing whites and having fun for a good cause.

The annual Country Music Festival mayor's charity cricket match has been revamped for 2013.

This year, Tamworth mayor Col Murray, a number of country music artists and well-known Tamworthians will today take to the greens of the South Tamworth Bowling Club for their annual face-off.

Among those to don their whites will be Bushwhacker Dobe Newton, who, in the lead-up to the event, said he was excited to show off his version of traditional bowling attire a bizarre custom-made white suit emblazoned with fluorescent pictures of animals.

Cr Murray is optimistic about his team's chances of a victory.

He said he'd managed to recruit a number of high-quality bowlers.

"But it's too early to mention their names. I'm anticipating the musicians will display some of the same under-handed tactics they have employed on the cricket pitch team in past years to be tried around the rink," he said.

Cr Murray said Dobe had "a track record of attempting to bring in top cricketers to their team who are supposedly musicians ... but I have some surprise tactics of my own this year".

With his tongue firmly planted in his cheek, Mr Newton said he would be "very surprised" if the mayor played fair.

"The musicians are the current holders of the Johnny Gleeson Trophy and the mayor badly needs a win," he said.

Mr Newton said while the bowling green would be a "more genteel" arena than a cricket pitch, he expected the event to remain "ferociously competitive".

"Loathe as I am to admit it, I think age must be catching up with a few of us including the mayor. Our days of running around the outfield to play cricket in the summer heat are behind us," he laughed.

Cr Murray said he was most grateful to the South Tamworth Bowling Club for agreeing to host the special festival event.

"The club has been great to work with to ensure it is run in the best possible manner to make a fun day," he said.

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