Giles Tremlett in Madrid
Saturday October 21, 2006
Europe's tenpin bowling alleys have become the unlikely focus of the latest round in the row between Spain and Britain over the sovereignty of Gibraltar.
The Spanish government has banned a bowling alley in Barcelona from hosting next year's European championships because a team from Gibraltar was due to compete.
"The Spanish government has instructed its sports federations not to participate in championships where players from Gibraltar also participate"said Kim Thorsgaard Jensen, vice-president of the European Tenpin Bowling Federation.
"As a consequence of this, it is not possible for Spain to host the European champions cup 2007."The championship has been moved to Luxembourg. Spain's tenpin bowling association declined to comment officially yesterday, but one member said: "This was not our decision."
Spain is battling to stop Gibraltar from joining the ranks of European football nations. The Court of Arbitration for Sport, based in Switzerland, recently ruled that Uefa should admit Gibraltar, at least provisionally. Amid rumours that teams such as Real Madrid and Barcelona might be pulled out of the Champions League, Uefa is putting off a decision until December.