TRIBUTES have been paid to a popular Stourbridge bowls player who has died after a short illness.

Keith Davies, of Hadcroft Grange, Wollescote, passed away on May 6, aged 87, after a short battle with leukaemia.

He leaves a wife - Mildred, aged 85, daughter Tanya and grand-daughters Jessica and Molly.

Keith, a member of Lye and Wollescote and The Hadcroft pub bowls clubs, was well-known on the Black Country crown green bowls scene and only last year he won the senior citizens cup in the doubles section of the Dudley and district league, with bowling comrade Mike Harvey.

The retired newspaper type setter, who worked at various publications including the old County Express, also won the champion of champions award in the singles section - just a day after his 87th birthday.

His daughter Tanya Fellows said: "He didn't start bowling until he was 65. He was a really good bowler and a true gent. He was pleasant and friendly to everybody and he was a very well-liked man who put others before himself.

"He was really healthy right up until the end but when he found out he was ill all he cared about was making sure someone looked after mum - and he didn't want his funeral to interrupt the bowling league."

Mr Harvey, club captain of Lye and Wollescote bowls club which meets at the Sons of Rest in Wollescote Park, described his bowls partner as "very competitive" and said he would be remembered as a "gentleman and a sportsman".

Keith's funeral will be held on Friday May 16 at 1.30pm at Stourbridge Crematorium followed by a wake at The Hadcroft.