By: Chris Gill
The Merseyside Champions of Champions at Scotties Snooker club in Liverpool
Last week’s ‘Champion of Champions’ snooker competition was won by Southport’s very own Gareth Hibbott, though on this occasion he was representing our neighbouring Ormskirk league at the time. As the name of the competition suggests, all of the players in the competition have won their leagues own Individual championship, and so it’s a tough competition to win. Gareth had played the champions of the Crosby, St.Helens and Widnes leagues to get to the final and had Prescott’s Brain Robertson in his way for his last challenge in the final.
Both players played to a high standard, Gareth made three breaks over 30 along with a 64 and 57 in the 6 frames they played, with Brian also scoring well making breaks of 43, 53 and 65. Gareth eventually ran out a 4 frames to 2 winner, taking the title and trophy back home with him to Southport. It is some 21 years since Gareth last won this title, which is quiet remarkable considering how many individuals he has won in both the Southport and Ormskirk leagues. So congratulations must go to him in making a little bit of history again.
Tarleton BC A kept up their winning streak beating S & B 5-1, to maintain their three point advantage at the top of the table. There is nothing much to report from the match other than that it took ages to play and the Tarleton lads went home when the milkmen were starting their morning rounds. Good job they sell San Miguel and had plenty of Battenburg cake. Ask Arnie Sothern next time you see him…!!!
Mere Brow A matched the leaders result after beating the Tarleton BC C team by the same 5-1 score line. The only highlight of the night for the C team was the superb 75 break that Jamie Wane against Martin Brown in one of the opening frames. Andy O’Hara replied with a 39 break for the visitors, beating last week’s high break man Peter Halsam in doing so. Mere Brow ran out winners in quick time to keep the pressure on at the top of the table.
Fleetwood Hesketh won 4-2 at the expense of Birkdale Cons, though the newly crowned Champion of Champions winner did not contribute to any of those four points. Birkdale’s Phil Fitzgerald claimed the top scalp of Gareth Hibbott, beating him 64-21, making a telling contribution of 33 in doing so, with Gavin Douglas beating Les Sullivan 61-15. Stuart Evans gave Ricky Webb back-to-back defeats for the first time this year as Mick Wardle beat Neil Rimmer 57-33 to level up the frames. Fleetwood’s Ste Crane and Dean Oliver got their third and fourth point on the night when they both won their frames against Ronnie Brooks and John Melvin.
The Tarleton BC B team fell to their second 4-2 defeat on the trot, this time to the hands of Waddington Cons. Ian Gautrey beat Billy Evans 87-12 to take him to 10 wins for the season as Paul Wilson got the better of Andy Marsden 78-39 in the opening frames. The middle frames were also shared with Ray Forshaw beating the Waddy’s Paul Taylor 54-19 and Gary Flynn seeing off John Gautrey in a low scoring game 40-19. The last pairings went the way of the visitors as Ali Iddon and Alan Tomlin both won, to see the Waddy extend their unbeaten run to six games.
The middle of the table clash between Banks A and Argyle LTC saw both teams share the points in a 3-3 draw. Matthew Wetton won his first frame of the season out of 5 attempts when beating Colin Coffey 70-22 in one of the opening frames as Ste Forshaw continued his recent good form beating Andy Bridge 52-35. Banks then moved to a 3-1 lead after Andy Hardisty and Al Sutton took care of Brain Jarrett and Ryan Curry. But the tennis club responded by claiming the remaining two frames to level up the match 3 apiece with wins for Paddy Tyndall and Peter Callaghan, Peter making a 46 break in his match.
Mere Brow B lost 4-2 against Churchtown Cons A to see them stay winless for the season from 15 attempts. Paul Crabtree junior beat Les Prescott 64-45 to leave the Con club player winless for the last three games on the trot, with Dan Matthews getting the better of David Forshaw 46-17. Dale Roberts got the Brews second point on the night beating Dave Harwood 55-20, with Craig Rice managing to edge past Harvey Webster on the final colours 59-51. Churchtown completed the 4-2 win when Mick Coxon and Colin Boston both won to move them to 9th in the table. Mere Brow go to the Waddy next as Churchtown host Tarleton C.
Waddington Cons B look hot favourites to claim the 2nd division title as they open up an 8 point lead at the top of the table after beating Les Dodd’s A 4-2. Keith Percival and Andy Linaker gave the home side a great start, both winning quite comfortably against Brian Hardy and Karl Bellmon. Ste Cobb moved to 10 wins for the season when beating Jordan Scutt 88-34 as Alan Harley got Doddy’s their first point of the night when beating Phil Gaskell 64-32. Both of the final two frames of the match were decided on the black with Martin Matthews getting Doddy’s their second point of the night beating Ray Highton 41-38 with the Waddy’s Alan Ashworth gaining an equally close 39-35 win over Peter Jackson.
The battle for second spot got even tighter after Bretherton A beat St.Teresa’s A 4-2 to leave a 1 point difference between 2nd and 5th in the league table. Martin Jones continued his winning streak beating Harry Haslam 57-30 aided with a 25 break in his match, with Jim Richards beating Trevor Ford to level the frames up after the opening frames. The Bretherton pair of Dave Cottam and Gordon Russell both won to leave the score line 3-1 in favour of the visiting team after they beat John Cromwell and Craig Jones respectively. Lee Cromwell managed to get his side another win, seeing off Jim Holden 57-37 but Ste Cromwell couldn’t get the better of Ron Dickinson, losing 51-17. Bretherton play 3rd placed Banks C next while Teresa’s go to 10th placed Churchtown C.
Banks C could only draw 3-3 with Our Lady’s and missed out on wining the match after going 3-1 up. Martin Sephton saw off Phil Fellows 54-22 in one of the opening frames as Tommy Tickle once again rolled back the years to beat Cliff Arnold 57-28 to square the frames up. Banks then took control of the match as John Prescott made his beat break of the season, a 29, in defeating Michael Houghton 75-44 with Alan Johnson also producing a fine break of 25 to secure a 56-33 win against Alan Parker. But the Formby side hit back taking the last two frames quiet convincingly, as Luke Marshall racked up 88 points in his near 50 points win over Rennie Culshaw and Keith Turner made sure of the draw when beating Billy Cummings by 30 points 54-24. Banks go to Bretherton next time in a battle for 2nd place with Our Lady’s hosting 4th placed Les Dodd’s B.
Les Dodd’s B suffered a shock 5-1 defeat to Scarisbrick A who recorded their first away win of the season in doing so. This result puts a dent in Doddy’s fight for a top 2 place, and leaves them sat among four other teams chasing down Waddy B. Lee Holmes got off to another flyer making breaks of 45 and 33 in his 110-16 win against Peter Fenwick, the third time he has broken the 100 point mark in a league fixture this season. But that would be the only high point of the night as Scarisbrick reeled off the remaining 5 frames. Norman Hallsworth made it 7 straight wins after beating Peter Parkinson 58-28, with Paul Horner getting to the 10 wins mark after he beat Paul Rogers 20-65. Scarisbrick take on the league leaders next at Bullens Lane, as Les Dodd’s will be hoping for a better result and performance at Our Lady’s.
British Rail A found it tough at home once again going down 5-1 to their visitors Banks B. This was the third 5-1 defeat at home for the Railwaymen which now leaves them two points adrift at the bottom of the table. Things might have been different had the home side managed to claim some of the closer frames on the night, losing three of the opening four frames by less than 13 points. John E Gearie edged past Peter Robinson junior on the black 58-51, in a frame that saw both players make 20 breaks. Paul Varney lost by 7 to Dave Turner, with Colin Nuttall going down by 8 points to Ray Swailes. When Mike Marsh beat John O’Malley 64-36, it meant the away team had claimed all of the four frames played. Eddy Cracknel stopped the rot with a 51-39 win over top stick Andy Griffiths, but Banks were not to be denied their biggest away win for the season when Bob Ashcroft beat Coiln Peet 53-7.
With league leaders Bretherton sitting out an Open Date Southport Cons closed the gap between themselves and the leaders with a 4-2 win over the visiting Scarisbrick B team. Things started well for the Con club as they raced to a 2-0 lead with wins for Jeff Wainwright and Larry Swindells, where Larry made two breaks over 20 in his 77-19 win over John Hardisty. That score line was to be doubled after the middle pairings when Matty Pollock beat Billy Wilson 53-31 and John Blackhurst got the better over Colin Rimmer 52-35. It wasn’t all one way traffic for the homes side as Scarisbrick fought back to claim the final pairings with wins for Peter Simpson over Colin Paul and Ian Lowery beating Peter Yates 48-21. The Con club’s next match is a trip to Marshside to play the old B team of Bath Street, while Scarisbrick travel to play Churchtown C.
Churchtown Cons D lost at home for the first time this season 5-1 to a Fleetwood Hesketh B side that had yet to taste victory on the road this year. Things were however stacked against the home side as they could only find four players on the night, but their loss was Fleetwood’s gain. Going to Churchtown on the back of a 6-0 drubbing of Waddy C last week, Fleetwood set off in similar style claiming the opening frames with wins for Lawrence Renshaw and Brain Kimberley. This in effect put them 4-0 up, but they still had time to get one more of the remaining frames to secure their best win of the season yet away from home. Steve Mentha went down 71-37 to Mick Orme as Russ Walsh brought up his 10th win of the season when beating Mark Beaver 67-45 and stop the potential full house for the visitors.
Les Dodd’s C moved up the table to 4th when demolishing Banks D 6-0, leaving the home side rooted to the foot of the table. This was Doddy’s first full house 6-0 win in a season that see’s them move to 8 wins from their 14 matches played. Doddy’s Kevin Woodfull and Damien Bloomfield got things off to a 2-0 lead beating Tony Coakley and Eric Hollin with a bit to spare. That score line was soon to be doubled when Martin Cusack beat Gerry Stone with the help of a 22 break, as Kyle Woodfull got one over Darren McDonnell on the final colours 50-41. The home pair of Barry Foster and Paul Wallwork couldn’t stop the whitewash as the Doddy’s pair of Harry Wilby and Danny Clegg both won making 20 breaks in their frames for good measure. Doddy’s play hosts to Birkdale B next as Banks face an Open Date.
Early pace setters in the league, Birkdale Cons B, just can’t seem to get their ‘mojo’ back after losing their fourth match in six, going down 4-2 to St.Teresa’s B. Things didn’t start well for the home side as the Teresa’s pair of Mike Langford and Nobby Lee took the opening frames. Nobby made his fourth break in the 20’s this year beating Reg Dobson 60-22, as Mike edged past Charlie Turner 54-40. Aiden Quinn was too good for Johnny Mullard to give the visitors three of the opening four frames, as Birkdales John Warwick claimed their first point of the night beating Ted Weir 54-37.Geoff Tyas struggled against Peter McGee losing 14-58 leaving it down to John Stringfellow to beat fellow McGee, Peter, by 46 points to 29. Birkdale, who lead the division back in November, have now slipped to 5th in the table some 9 points off the top and face a tricky match away to Les Dodd’s C next. For Teresa’s, they face the league leaders Bretherton at home.
Waddington C got their fourth win of the season at the expense of Birkdale B, beating them 4-2 and giving their visitors their first taste of defeat on the road. Having gone six matches away from Birkdale unbeaten this year, it was somewhat surprising that their first defeat would come at the hands of Waddy C. Max and Guy Riley both got the home side off to a great start, both wining their frames against Sean McDerby and Phil Green. But the tables turned in the middle pairings for the Birkdale as they levelled up the frame scores to 2 apiece when Martin Calvert and Andy Day got the better of the Whyte’s, Stefan and Steve. Bob Fairclough won for the first time in his last 7 attempts beating Paul Rimmer 58-12 as David Brown completed a 48 to 36 points win over Eddie Tennant to complete the 4 frames to 2 win. The Waddy sit out the nest round of fixtures ad Birkdale face Churchtown C.
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