League leaders Malew defeated by Hurricanes
The Macs Builders Merchants snooker league returned to action after a somewhat extended festive break, league leaders Malew took on third placed Hurricanes in the big clash of the week as Paul Smith and Chris Dagnall report.
Malew 1-4 Hurricanes
Mark Quinn 69-25 Paul Smith. Despite Smith's best efforts to avoid playing his bogey man by going on first, the draw yet again pitted him against Postie. A 35 start didn't seem insurmountable, but after going in off on the break and a red and black from Postie the start was soon up to 47. Despite a 17 break from Smith, Postie kept the 30 point cushion all the way with some great trade mark long potting, good safety and a surprising lack of flukes! Smith conceded on the colours and preceded to drown his sorrows in a nearby hostelry. Jimmy Goodwin 72-82 Jamie Wilson. Some excellent single ball pots from Goodwin kept Wilson at more than arms length. However, Wilson sprung into life mid frame with a solid 32 break to make inroads into the handicap. Coming to the colours it was all to play for with Goodwin holding a slender lead. On the blue Goodwin attempted a safety but missed the ball completely. The foul left Wilson a point behind and he duly potted the blue to move ahead. A few attempts later Wilson potted the pink to seal the frame for a hard fought win. Alec Oates 36-49 Stuart Littlewood. Although both are capable players this was a rather turgid affair. There were some excellent single ball pots from both, but neither could build anything substantial. On the colours both needed blue and pink to win, but with the pink on the side cushion it wasn't going to be straight forward. After a bit of a safety battle Alec saw a half chance and went for the blue, unfortunately the blue rattled and the cue ball cannoned the pink off the cushion to leave Stu with the easiest of tap ins to continue his fine season with yet another win. Eric Drinkwater 73-92 Chris Dagnall. A 56 start wasn't enough for Eric in this frame although he potted the first couple of balls to apply some pressure to Dagsy who struggled to find his range early on. Dagsy then hit his stride mid frame with some excellent long pots and mid teen breaks culminating in a 24 run to get right back in the frame. Even so Drinkwater was still 13 in front heading for the colours. He had a chance to pot yellow, but left it in the jaws and with the rest of the colours all in the open Dagsy cleared up for the frame and another point and a half in the high break league. David ‘Rads’ Quayle 67-73 Steve Munk, anything could and did happen in this frame. The early stages was a case of both players trading pots but not many colours being potted. In fact Munk hardly made any inroads on Rads start and the game looked over when he was still 24 points behind on the blue. Munk got left an easy blue which he potted realising he would only need one snooker on the pink and black and the final two balls to tie. There then followed a passage of play that saw Rads trying to roll the pink over the bag and Munk trying to get a snooker. Munk got a couple of snookers but pink was always too close to the cushion and easy to hit, Rads got the pink over the bag only to see Munk somehow keep it out and go safe. Finally, Munk got a snooker with pink in the middle of the table and Rads missed leaving Munk needing pink and black to tie. After Rads went in off the pink Munky could now win with the remaining colours. He took pink but there was no way of getting on the black and he left white near the green spot with black tight on the cushion between the green spot and the green pocket. The safe shot was get the long stuff out and put black on the side cushion, but Munky doesn't do orthodox and decided to come off the yellow side cushion and attempt to pot black in the green bag. Not surprisingly this didn't work, but he did manage to hit the black and leave Rads with a quarter ball cut to win the frame. Probably shocked by Munk’s outrageous attempt to pot black, Rads clipped the black too thin and the white hit the baulk cushion, the side cushion, the top cushion and ended up in the yellow pocket to give Munk the frame. All in all a slightly flattering score line, although a well deserved win for the Hurricanes, who must have said hello to the fairies on the way down.
St Olaves A 3-2 Peel Legion
St Olaves started the evening in second place and had a solid start from their Darrell Thacker with a 26 break pulling back Barton Beaumont’s handicap before a couple of well laid snookers paid dividends for the latter. Thacker had to produce a couple of good pots to force a re-spot black which also went his way, Thacker 85-78 Beaumont. Paul Smyth is having a good season and knocked in this week’s highest break of 38 but could quite shake off Peel’s Tom Curphey. A doubled pink from Curphey took it to the black but unfortunately a foul cost Peel another frame, Smyth 74-66 Curphey. Dave Kelly put St Olaves into an unassailable lead with a 50-18 win over Jim Caley. Kelly was always ahead and some good pots on the early colours meant there'd be no late fightback from Caley this week. Sean Corkish was giving Geoff Hall a 42 start and after an early tidy 3 reds with two blacks from Hall he was up against it. With eight reds left Corkish still hadn’t got going but he did win a very tactical tippy-tappy tactical exchange but then uncharacteristically broke down early into a couple of small breaks. Hall then cleared 3 reds in another run of 15 and although he unluckily went in off the third red, snookers were required. Corkish fought on looking for a consolation break but it wasn’t to be, Corkish 45-86 Hall. The final frame also went convincingly Peel’s way. James Kerr was a bit under par but had no luck whatsoever and John Kelly grew in confidence as it went on and eased to a 17-76 win. Another loss for Peel who are now alone at the bottom of the league but at least they won on aggregate points scored and made St Olaves work hard for the win.
Finch Hill Rockets 3-2 Newbys DSB
The Rockets stay fourth with this win. Frames scores, Marek Kenny 65-50 Johnny Myers, Ron Grogan 38-83 Pat Maher, John Spellman 62-51 Ste MacDonald, Graham Ashton 35-55 Adam Dooley and Doug Kinrade 75-43 Zain Abideen. No big breaks and John Spellman made it seven wins from eight with his black ball win. Between them, Kenny, Spellman and Kinrade have won 22 of their 28 frames for the Rockets this season.
Port St Mary Legion 3-2 St Olaves Musicians
The first two frames were shared, Marc Morley 69-43 Peter Collister and Phil Joynes 46-54 Matthew Dodd which went to the pink. Dave Pickersgill had a 20 break during his 69-35 win over Mike Doherty. Another pink ball win for John Kennish with a 31 along the way levelled the score again, Shaun Roberts 65-75 Kennish. Sadly the Musicians were a player short which guaranteed a fourth win of the season for PSM who move off the bottom.
Jacksons 1-4 Cue Zone Reprobates
The first of two derby ties at The Cue Zone which both went heavily to the ‘away’ teams. Mike Reddington 43-75 Rob Callister, Paul Kell 32-53 Brendan Clague, Lee Gale (20 break) 62-63 Paul Tangeman, Kam Virk 78-32 Dollin Mercer and Tony Dhadwal 38-53 Rhys Moore.
Cue Zone Blinders 0-5 Cue Zone Mob
A great win for The Mob who move up two places to fifth. Wins on the black for Peter Kirkham and Steve Finnegan put them on their way and a 26 break from Tom Miller helped him to a narrow win and seal victory. The final two frames were more conclusive as the Blinders slipped to their first ever whitewash defeat. Frame scores, Brandon Forrester 65-78 Peter Kirkham, Sam Palmer 59-61 Steve Finnegan, Scott Campion 60-70 Tom Miller, Ivan McMaw 32-64 Steve Oates and Josh Rigg 36-57 Lee Hunt.
Three teams now share top spot, St Olaves A, The Hurricanes and Malew all on 35 points, Malew having played one more match. Next week’s fixtures will take us the midpoint of the season when St Olaves A play at CZ Reprobates and The Hurricanes entertain PSM. Malew have a bye. Mark Quinn with 11 wins still heads the individual league from Stu Littlewood, Jamie Wilson and Darrell Thacker on 10. No change in the high breaks league where Dave Addinall stays on 33 points from John Kennish on 22.5 and Sean Corkish 18.
The association recently held a referee's course at The Cue Zone and congratulations to Scott Campion and Sam Palmer who successfully passed their exam and are looking forward to putting their gloves on for the upcoming Castle Cabs Premier League event. Good luck also to John Spellman who will be taking his exam shortly. Thanks to examiner Ken Kinrade.