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|Roll of Honour|
|CONVINCING WINS FOR TOP THREE TEAMS
As the second half of the season got underway it was plain sailing for the top three teams as Con A, West Devon A and Legion A all produced strong performances with comfortable wins.
Legion A made short work of Con D with a resonding 5 – 0 thumping, with only Brian Palmer of Con D getting a score above 20 (48). Particularly high scores for Legion’s Ryall and Woods capped a dominant display from start to finish.
West Devon A produced another strong performance with a 4 – 1 win over Con B. Earlier though, Mark Evans for Con put his team one up with a superb display by disposing of Emptage 72 – 26 but from there on it was all WD A. Comfortable wins for Hawke, Hurford, Rich and Heathman meant it was all one way traffic with Con’s Kellaway and Dolan only producing 4 points each in their respective frames.
Con A produced a 4- 1 win over West Devon B but the score line did not reflect how close WD came to taking at least 2 frames. Instead it was Babb with a 22 break and Evans in a black ball game that gave Con the advatage before Bath pulled one back with a dominating display from start to finish over a lack lustre Lacey. Carruthers eased past Smith whilst Cook in fine form with a 24 break making it 4 for Con with a nice win over Gilchrist.
CON C MOVE INTO SECOND SPOT
Con C continued their superb run of results with an eye catching 3 – 2 win over in form Legion A to occupy second spot in the table. Andrews, Ewings and Lillicrap gave Con C a dream start with wins over Grylls, Wickett and Stewart respectively. Con however did not have it all their own way with Wood producing a nice clearance to pip Bassett to the post in a black ball game. A further face saving display from a dominant Ryall over Craze put an air of respectability on the match as Legion pulled another frame back. Things are realy hotting up in the league now with only 2 points seperating Con C, West Devon A and Legion A, in second third and fourth spots.
WEST DEVON B END YEAR ON A HIGH
West Devon B ended their year with a 3 – 2 win over a depleted 3 man (and one woman) Con B, no disgrace to Con B though who gave a good account of themselves despite this. Con’s Kellaway fought out a tough low scoring game with Bath to eventually win on the black. John Rich hit back immediatley for WD with a win over Croucher. In a high scoring open game Smith made it three for WD with a win over Angie Ward. No disgrace to Angie who scored a commendable 45 points before going down. Evans with another solid display pulled a consolation frame back for Con by taking out WD’s skipper Gilchrist in the final frame. With the season half way through WD B can look back and draw comfort from the clear space they have now put between them and the bottom table spot, whilst Con B are counting the cost of not being able to put out a settled 5 man team every week.
CON ‘D’ MAKE CON ‘A’ WORK HARD FOR THEIR WIN
Top of the table Con A made hard work of beating bottom of the table Con D, but came away with maximum points in the end. With only 3 men available, Con D could have just ‘rolled over’ but they didn’t. Wilkinson came out and took the game to Con A’s unbeaten Lacey with some fluent cueing and several nice pots. Lacey struggled but managed to keep in the game as it went down to the last two balls. It looked curtains for Lacey until Wilkinson missed an easy pink to win the game allowing a grateful Lacey back to the table to pot the pink and an easy black to steal it. It was no easier for another of Con A’s top men as Evans found Holmes in resplendent form. Trading punch for punch all the way, Holmes just kept coming back at Evans finding some assured potting for the first time this season. It was heartbreak for Holmes in the end though as Evans dug deep into his reservoir of experience to pot the pink to take the frame. Business was resumed as normal in the last frame for Con A as Carruthers made short work of Palmer, with three 14 breaks enough to see him home. The win increases Con A’s lead at the top of the league to 13 points having played one more game than West Devon A
SHOCK OF THE SEASON AS CON C HUMBLE WEST DEVON A
Con C produced the shock of the season as they audaciously pulled off a shock 3 – 2 win away to west devon A inflicting only their second defeat of the season on them. There was no sign of things to come when Hurford took out Con’s ‘danger-man’ Bassett to put WD one up. Hitting right back Andrews as stand in skipper made it all square with a victory over WD new boy Dingle, game on!. Emptage took to the table and restored WD’s lead with an emphatic win over Neale. Back again came Con with a good win for Lillicrap over Colin Heathman, further extending Heathmans barren spell. Down to the deciding frame it was pressure on WD’s stand in player Chris Hurford (injured finger) up against Con’s Ewings who makes a habit of blowing ‘hot & cold’. Tonight though it was ‘hot’ for Ewings as he produced a match winning display to convincingly steam roller Hurford and with it the shock win of the season for Con C.
CHRISTMAS CHEER FOR WEST DEVON B
It was an early Christmas for West Devon B as they completed their first win in the league for several weeks by taking out Con D. John Rich got things off to a good start with a tight black ball win over Heartfield, with Bath grinding out a second for WD after another tough game with Holmes. Con hit back with Wilkinson notching up his first win of the season over WD skipper Gilchrist. The WD win was duly completed by Moule in yet another close encounter with Con’s Hoare. Con D put an air of respectability on the match with ‘super sub’ Palmer dispatching Roger Rich in a 59 minute epic marathon match, another black ball game. With this win West Devon B moved off the foot of the table with Con D now occupying that spot as a result of their defeat.
ANOTHER ‘FIFER’ FOR CON ‘A’
Con A marched on with another 5 – 0 win over neighbours Con B, this despite missing key players Babb (thigh strain) and Lacey (frost bite). The scoreline however did not do justice to Con B who were on the wrong end of a couple of close frames. Cook had to call on all his reserves to pull back a bright start from Mark Evans to put Con A in front. Folley had the better of a tough safety game with Roffey to make it two for The A Team, whilst Carruthers with a 26 break was too hot for Willson. Tom Evans had to dig deep to over come Croucher who managed to drag Evans down in a dour battle of wits which went down to the pink. Stand in sub Mills slugged it out with Kellaway in a nice open potting game which could have gone either way. In the end it was Mills who had the edge to make it 5 for Con A on the night.
Legion continued there run of impressive form with a comfortable 4 – 1 win over basement team West Devon B. In form Ryall was much too strong for WD’s new youngster Moule as was Grylls against John Rich, making it two for the Legion. Bath reduced the deficit for WD with a solid performance restricting Legion’s Wickett to only 8 points. Any thoughts of a WD come back were soon dismissed with emphatic wins for Legion skipper Stewart over Roger Rich and Woods over veteran May. This is now 3 wins on the trot for Legion and it seems that they are now getting a real ‘head of steam’ together, producing some good league results.
WEST DEVON SEIZE SECOND SPOT
West Devon A sliped seamlessly into second spot in the table with a comfortable win over Con B and reducing Con A’s lead at the top to 5 points. Andy Hurford started WD’s winning ways despite being made to fight all the way by a fast improving Mark Evans. Heathman got back to winning ways after recent reversals with a win over a tenacious Roffey who took him all the way to the black ball. Kellaway reduced the arrears for Con with a steady win over ‘stand in’ Chris Hurford. Any thoughts of a Con come-back were soon dampened with emphatic wins for Emptage over Croucher and Hawke over Dolan. A good four points for WD despite missing star player Nugget Rich who had to go shopping with his mum.
Legion continued their surge up the table with their favourite recent past-time of beating Con sides, a 4 – 1 win over Con D being the latest of these wins. RBl’s Skipper Stewart had to dig deep to overcome a fine challenge from Wilkinson needing the black to complete the job. Heartfield whilst struggeling with the colours managed to find enough to overcome Wickett, again on the black ball to make it all square. ‘New Boy’ Palmer was no match for Legion’s Wood as Legion edged ahead again. Ryall clicked into gear and made short work of Hoare treating the crowd to a 27 break in the process as Legion made it three. ‘Icing on the cake’ was provided by Legion’s Grylls as he made it 4 for his team as he overcame a spirited challenge from Con’s Holmes.
LEGION BURST CON ‘C’ BUBBLE
Con C run of good form came to an abrupt end on Thursday at the hands of Legion who showed what they are capable of. Skipper Jago, standing in for Bassett, gave Con C the best of starts with a solid display against Wickett whilst Legion skipper Stewart immediately restored parity with a good win over Lillicrap. Grylls took Legion ahead with a nice win over in form Andrews, denting Andrews air of invincibility in the process. Back came Con C with a black ball win for Ewings over legion danger-man Woods to take the match to a last frame decider. Legion came out on top with an overdue powerful display from Ryall over Neale, with the former now starting to show signs of his previous form prior to his protracted lay off from snooker.
Con A further cemented their spot at the top of the table with a comfortable win over West Devon B. Cons Cook seems to be making a habit of slow starts as he battled out an hour long frame with Gilchrist who was not in a mood to give anything away. Cook eventually came out on top but the frame could have gone either way. It was an ‘early bath’ for Colin as Con’s Lacey romped away with an emphatic win over Bath garnished with a 28 break in the process. Evans continued to impress with a 25 break which WD’s Roger Rich never recovered from. Con’s Babb now back to full match fitness, made short work of a lack lustre May who could only manage to produce 6 points in his frame. In the final frame WD’s John Rich made a mockery of the ‘form book’ by taking the game to Con’s star Carruthers, and opened up a 20 plus lead in no time. Shocked into action Carruthers had to produce a superb 34 clearance to end the brave Rich challenge and make it two ‘fifers’ on the trot for Con A.
CON ‘A’ ARE TOP DOGS
Con A surged to the top of the league by profitably winning their game in hand with a thumping 5 – 0 over neighbours Con D. Holmes for Con D started brightly against Cook but it was only a matter of time before Cook found enough to pull the frame around. The Evans steam train rolled on with an easy win over Wilkinson whilst Lacey made short work of Heartfield who just could not get the balls in the pockets. Folley and Day fought out a hard safety game before Folley managed to ease ahead and win on the blue. Carruthers with an early 24 break comfortably overcame Hoare to make it a ‘fifer’ for Con A and take them 4 points clear at the top of the league. With only their ‘Carling Cup Reserve’ team out, and star man Babb being rested, this result again proves Con A are the team to beat this season. Con’s worry now is that they may be fined for fielding a second team with skipper Folley threatening to resign if this happens (would anyone notice ?).
WEST DEVON B NOTCH UP FIRST WIN OF SEASON
Bottom of the table West Devon B notched up their first win of the season in a hard fought encounter over fellow strugglers Con B. Things started brightly for Con with in form Dolan overcoming WD skipper Gilchrist to put Con one up. John Rich never looked in trouble whilst restoring parity for WD with a comfortable win over Croucher. John Rich’s Father, Roger Rich then put WD in front again in a good potting frame to edge out Con’s Willson. The deciding frame was also taken by WD as Bath mustered all his experience to edge past the post in a ‘black ball’ game against a spirited Con debutant Mark Evans. Pulling a consolation frame back, Con’s Kellaway posted his first league victory to overcome WD stalwart May. With both teams looking to kick start their seasons it was WD that can take the most from this encounter whilst Con B again find themselves on the wrong end of a series of 3-2 reversals, and not quite able to find the killer punch.
CON TRIUMPH OVER WEST DEVON IN CLASH OF THE ‘A’ TEAMS
Con A rode into the ‘lion’s den’ and came away with an emphatic victory over West Devon A on Thursday.
It did not look like it at the start though as both teams ‘main men’ Carruthers and Kevin Rich were drawn together, both boasting unbeaten records. WD’s Rich proved again what a class ‘match player’ he is by taking more of the chances available than Carruthers to claim the frame on the pink. With the scalp of Con’s main man, WD could be forgiven for thinking it was going to be a good night and that they could replicate last seasons victory over the Con side. It was not to be though as Con bounced back with a ‘class’ performance from Babb who with a 24 break, took out a lack-lustre Heathman, followed by another robust performance from Evans who was just too strong for Hurford. The match-winning frame came with a solid display from Con’s Cook who calmly took the numerous chances left to him by an ‘out of sorts’ Hawke to run out comfortable winner. The ‘icing on the cake’ came when Con’s Lacey beat WD danger-man Emptage after a tight frame by holding his nerve and doubling an exquisite full table length black ball to make it an emphatic 4 – 1. Emptage in total awe of this shot was rendered speechless for once in his life.
Over at the Con Club, Con C were continuing their run of good form with a solid win over Con D to make a guest appearance at the top of the league table. Con D took the first marathon frame with Hoare overcoming Craze, courtesy of a ‘black ball game’ foul from Craze. ‘Chairman’ Palmer in his debut league game had an encouraging performance before losing out in a one hour ten minute, war of attrition, black ball game, with ‘Secretary’ Jago. This did nothing for the career prospects of Secretary Jago. From here on in it was all Con C with emphatic wins for Bassett over Wilkinson and Lillicrap over Holmes. Only Heartfield for Con D put up any meaningful resistance before also succumbing to another black ball loss to Andrews. This was a solid performance from Con C and their pre season transfer acquisitions are now starting to gel as a unit and with it the side are fast becoming a ‘force to reckon with’ in the league.
LEGION RUN LEAGUE LEADERS WEST DEVON CLOSE
Legion stunned West Devon by taking a two-frame lead over the league leaders with good solid performances from skipper Stewart and Ryall. Shocked into action, WD started the come back with Emptage needing a 26 break to stamp his authority on his game, which proved enough to win the frame. Heathman continued the WD comeback inflicting the first loss of the season on Woods in a tough encounter. The comeback was then duly completed by Kevin Rich, after a slow start, eventually taking out Williams with a super 34 break along the way.
Con D against Con B was Billed as the ‘Bargain Basement Battle’ the game lived up to its billing with a close battle between two under performing teams. Croucher put Con B in front by beating Wilkinson on the pink only for Con D to bounce back with Day overcoming league debutant Kellaway. Heartfield then put Con D in front with an emphatic victory over a subdued Armstrong. Hoar then sealed the game for Con D in a tight black ball finish against Roffey. Reducing the losing margin, Con B’s Dolan made short work of Holmes who could only muster another single figure return on his score (6).
Next weeks fixtures bring the mouth watering top of the table clash between West Devon A and Con A which is sure to be a ‘Battle Royal’, book your seats early!
EMERGENCY PRESS RELEASE
Reports are emerging that WD B in the light of their recent drubbing are considering calling up Keith Anderson as an emergency relief player.
Mr Anderson from his St Ives weekend retreat was unavailable for comment, his Press Agent however commented that this was a just malicious gossip designed to undermine the moral of the B team. When asked if it was true that Mr Anderson did not know one end of the cue from the other, his response was a catigorical ‘of course he knows which end of racket to use’.
CON C SMASH AND GRAB AT WEST DEVON
Con C breezed into The West Devon and audaciously grabbed all five points in a night for them to remember and one WD B will want to forget. Andrews for Con took out ‘in form’ John Rich who only managed one ‘in off’ the whole frame. Con’s Ewings went behind to a spirited start from new WD boy Moule but managed to haul himself back to take the frame. Gilchrist for WD potted some nice reds but suffered on the colours, allowing Lillicrap to build a lead from which he never recovered. Con’s ‘star of the evening’ Bassett, dominated from start to finish with clinical 30 & 20 breaks to seal the fate of Roger Rich who struggled to get a look in. With 5 in sight it was down to Craze to overcome Bath in the final frame. This he did but it was not easy as Bath fought all the way to the end, losing out on the last couple of balls. Good win for Con C and their first ever ‘fifer’ as they proclaimed there are ‘new kids on the block’, with the home team obviously missing the influence of absent Jack May.
Con B entertaining Legion A went one down as gnarled seasoned league veteran Ryall made short work of Angela Ward, who in credit to her, never gave up. Roffey came from 24 behind to nick the frame off Legion’s skipper Stewart. Rod wood again turned on the power show to edge out Con’s Dolan to put Legion in front again. Victory for Legion was sealed with a tight black ball win for Parr against a gritty display from Armstrong. Not to be cowed though, Con took the last frame with a captain’s innings from Croucher to overcome Wickett and put some respectability on the match.
A WEST DEVON FIFER TAKES THEM TO TOP SPOT
No scares at the West Devon as their A Team completed a regulation 5 – 0 win over Con D. Wins for Hurford, Emptage, Hawke and Heathman set the ball rolling with the rout duly completed by Kevin Rich, to take them to the top spot of the League. There was a crumb of comfort for Con D with their skipper Ali Holmes getting into double figures for a change. Early season signs seem to be that West Devon A are the team to watch.
Con A entertained Legion A and got off to a flyer with Carruthers amassing a superb 68 break allowing new boy Ryall no way back. This break is sure to be the ‘benchmark’ for the seasons highest break award. Further comfortable wins for Lacey over Stewart, and Babb on his return, over Wickett, set Con on the way to what looked like being a comfortable victory. Legion though never give up and bounced back with a display of snooker finesse from Woods to overcome in form Evans. Being 15 points up with 18 left on the table Evans looked set fair until Woods with a delicate display gently stroked in an 18 clearance to take the frame. Last on for Con was new signing Cook, who struggled with his rhythm during the early part of the frame. Parr for the Legion failed to capitalise on this and suffered as Cook eventually found his touch with a couple of double figure breaks to run in comfortable winner and making it 4 – 1 for his team on the night.
CON C TAKE THE HONOURS IN TOUGH BATTLE
Con C bounced back to winning ways with a hard fought tussle over rivals Con B. Ewings overcame Croucher, whilst Armstrong made it all square with a hard fought win over Con C Skipper Jago. Dolan restored the B team’s lead with a superb display to overcome a somewhat lacklustre Bassett, showing what he is capable of on his night. Neale pulled it back for the C Team with another tough encounter to shade Willson in a close black ball finish. Down to the deciding frame it was Andrews for the C Team that dominated from the start not allowing Roffey to settle and ran out comfortable winner to clinch it for his team.
WEST DEVON ‘A’ TRIUMPH IN LOCAL DERBY
The new league got underway on Thursday with the mouth watering opening local derby game between WD A & WD B. An Early spirited challenge from the B teams Gilchrist was overcome by Hurford, with Bath & May being brushed aside by Hawke & Kevin Rich to put the A team in a dominant position. A further win for the A team by Heathman over Roger Rich set up the prospect of an A Team whitewash. With ‘Pretty Boy Emptage’ odds on favourite to overcome B teams John Rich, no one expected Rich to open up a 30 plus lead stunning the local crowd into silence. The comeback came, and the comeback went, as Emptage hauled himself back into the game needing only the black ball to win, only to see his white go in off the black to hand a grateful Rich the honours.
Across the square last years Champs Con A were being entertained by Con C fresh from their pre season squad strengthening spree. New Con C acquisition Lillicrap must have wished he had stayed on the golf course as he only managed 3 points against a rampant Evans. Carruthers was run close by C Teams Neale, taking the black to win, although Neale should really have clinched it earlier, missing a regulation black ball himself. Another C Team new boy Andrews earned his transfer fee by beating Mills in a scrappy frame, to pull one back for his team. Lacey made short work of Craze to stretch the A Teams lead, with Folley coming back from a 20 plus deficit to run out comfortable winner over Ewings. Con A with a 4-1 win in the bag were the first to admit the score line was a touch flattering, whilst Con C will take heart from a good performance despite missing their key man Bassett.
CONSERVATIVE D WIN THE CUP
Underdogs Con D performed heroics to overcome favourites West Devon A to win the first ever Jack May KO Cup at the British Legion last night. Despite a favourable handicap Con D had to call on all their resources to overcome a West Devon side who have previously proved that the handicaps were no bar to their progress in the cup. Lillicrap got Con D off to a winning start with a hard slog win over Hurford that went down to the brown ball. Both players potted several reds but the colours were proving elusive and it was down to a couple of fine long pots from Lillicrap that proved the difference. Next on Heartfield found West Devon’s Heathman in formidable form with Heathman all but eliminating the handicap in quick time. In the ‘nick’ of time though Heartfield found his touch riding his luck at times but also putting some nice balls away to take the game away from Heathman and make it 2 for Con D. Make or break time now for the West Devon with dangerman Emptage up against Con’s Day. Keeping his focus Day played the sort of game he is capable of but which has eluded him for most of the season by playing a mixture of safety and taking balls when they were on. Emptage gave a good account of himself but was not able to make any inroad in to the handicap and Day’s steady game enabled him to run out comfortable winner and with it the cup for Con D. This was a superb win for Con D who have spent most of the season in the lower half of the league but credit must also go to West Devon A who helped make a good Cup Final played in the right spirit by both teams.
Thanks also to The British Legion for hosting the event and for their Angus Stewart for his referee services.
CON D BOOK FINAL AGAINST WEST DEVON A
This was not for the faint hearted as West Devon A & West Devon B slugged it out in a ‘no holds barred’ semi final local derby encounter.
Seasoned veteran May got the WD B off to a fine start with a grafted black ball win over Hawke. Colin Heathman restored parity for the A Team whilst brother Rob made it two with the slenderest of wins over Gilchrist, another black ball game. Back again came the B Team with John Rich managing to keep the white on the table for once, taking out Hurford in yet another black ball game, to make it all square. Down to the last deciding frame and the atmosphere was palpable with Bath and Emptage entering the arena like two modern day gladiators. Jousting for position it was Emptage that gradually pulled away with the more consistant potting backed up with some good safety. Taking the brown ball it was all over with the A Team through to the finals and the B Team lamenting on what could have been. This was a thoroughly brave effort from the B Team and the A Team bruised and battered, knew they had been in a real battle.
Across the square, Con D were proving all the pundits wrong who doubted they could overcome a resurgent Legion A. From the ‘word go’ they took the game to Legion with a solid display from Croucher who proved at last what he is capable of by taking out Wickett. Lillicrap then proceeded to take his chances well and leave no way back for Legion’s ‘dangerman’ Woods to make it two for the Con’s. The third frame was a must win frame for Legion and Williams must have fancied his chances against Con’s Holmes who has not enjoyed the most prosperous season so far. In a scrappy frame that could have gone either way it was Con’s Holmes, who despite showing his obvious nerves, kept his composure to pot the most satisfying pink of his career and with it booked a passage for Con D to the final. This must have been a very satisfying result for Con D who now find themselves in the Final next week against the favourites West Devon A.
Final to take place next Thursday 1st of April at Tavistock Legion 7.30pm start
West Devon A v Conservative D.
CUP SHOCK AS LEGION KO LEAGUE CHAMPS
Shock of the Cup Quarter Finals night was Legion’s 3 – 0 win over Con A to take them through to the Semi Finals. Good wins for Stewart, Wickett and Williams ensured there was no way back for Con A. This win was just reward for a Legion team that has been improving steadily all season
A dour struggle between Con B & Con D took place and went down to the last ball of the last frame to settle. Wins for Williams and Dolan gave Con B a dream start only to be pegged back by Day and Andrews to make it two a piece. The final frame was ‘nip and tuck’ all the way with Heartfield keeping his nerve to pot the black to his obvious delight and with it the spoils for Con D.
West Devon A went one down with Con C’s Bassett taking control of his game despite a 32 break from Heathman. The lead was short lived though with Emptage, Hurford and Kevin Rich restoring order and with it a 3 – 1 win West Devon. Highlight of the night was a superb 42 break from Kevin Rich underlining his imperious form this season.
The Semi Finals next week are shaping up to be quite an interesting affair with the local Derby draw between the West Devon A & B teams looking a mouth watering prospect.
Legion A travel to Con D.
SEASON CONCLUDES WITH WINS FOR THE TOP THREE
Already Crowned Champions Con A concluded their season with a formality 5 – 0 win over Con C. With the exception of C Jago who ran Mills close, there were comfortable wins for Evans over Neale, Carruthers (25) over Bassett and Lacey over Liversidge, with Lacey slotting in 30 and 22 breaks on the way. It was nice to see the return of Martin Davey for Con C after a 20-year league lay off. Davey showed some brief signs of form but in the end too many rusty unforced errors allowed Folley to comfortably make it 5 – 0 for Con A.
In the West Devon local derby it was business as usual for the A team with a 4 – 1 win over the B team. Hurford for the A team overcame John Rich with assistance from a customary liberal spattering of ‘in offs’ from Rich. Heathman ousted Gilchrist while Emptage fought off a stern challenge from Bath to take the spoils. To prove it was not all one-way traffic, Roger Rich pulled one back for WD B with a cultured win over Hawke. Kevin Rich (32 & 21) then restored the ‘normal order of things’ with the biggest winning margin of the season, 122 – 7, over Smith to keep his season’s unbeaten record in tact.
Legion secured their 3rd spot in the league with an emphatic 5 – 0 win over Con B. Woods, Parr and Gibbs had untroubled wins over Bill Williams, Hoare and Roffey respectively. Con’s Dolan then gifted Williams a frame when he made a lovely 25 clearance only to find out that Williams was in fact 26 ahead, “need of a calculator next season me thinks”. Stewart then produced a true captains innings to make it 5 for the Legion with a one way traffic win over Hattie Hurle to cap a superb season for the Legion.
Next week sees the start of The Jack May Knockout Handicap Shield to take place over 3 weeks.
The order of play as follows :-
West Devon A (SCR) v Con C (50)
Con D (50) v Con B (50)
Legion A (25) v Con A (SCR)
West Devon B (25) BYE
BATTLE OF THE BARGAIN BASEMENT
In the battle of the league basement, Con C continued there recent run of form pulling themselves further away from the bottom of the table with a well earned hard fought win over bottom place Con B. Con B looked like spoiling the party for most of the game as they went One up with good win by Williams over Maloney only to be pegged back by Bassett who eventually overcame a tenacious Hoare. Con B again took the lead with Nolan continuing his recent winning ways with a win over Craze who also contributed in full in what was a good potting game. Ewings restored parity for Con C edging out Hattie Hurle to make it all square once again. Down to the final deciding frame it was very much an ‘ebb & flow’ game with both Con C’s Neale and Con B’s Roffey respectively taking the lead only to be pegged back again by the other. In the end it was a timely first win of the season for Neale taking the pink and the black that provided a 3-2 win for Con C.
CON (A) SECURE LEAGUE TITLE,
WEST DEVON (A) TAKE RUNNERS UP
Con A secured the Tavistock Snooker League title with a hard earned 3 – 2 win over Legion.
Requiring only 3 frames from their last two matches, Con A were made to fight all the way by a resurgent Legion side. In the first frame Legion’s skipper Stewart turned up, Con’s skipper Folley didn’t, that was that, one nil to Legion. Bouncing back Babb produced a solid display and never looked in trouble against Legion’s Wickett. Next the shock of the night as Legion went 2 – 1 up with Woods producing one of his best potting displays of the season to inflict the first loss of the season on Con’s Carruthers. Again back came Con with Lacey edging out in form Gibbs in a real gritty no holds barred frame of snooker. Down to the decider Con’s Longden and Legion’s Williams traded blows in the early stages with no one stamping their authority on the game. As the game progressed though Longden started to take more of his chances and slowly but surely pulled away from Williams and thus securing the frame Con required to make it mathematically impossible for second place West Devon A to catch them.
Con A can now relax in their last game of the season in the knowledge that the League Title is now in the bag.
Second place West Devon A went into this game against Con D knowing that only 5 points from it would give them even the remotest of chances of catching Con A at the top of the table. A good start with comfortable wins for Emptage over Day and Hurford over Jankowski put them two up, with a superb 38 from Hurford giving the home crowd something to cheer about. Con D pulled a frame back with a good win from Andrews over Colin Heathman who was nursing a training injury received the day before. Kevin Rich made short work of Croucher whilst fellow WD teammate Hawke overcame spirited resistance from Con’s skipper Holmes to make it 4- 1 for WD. With one game left to play West Devon can also reflect on a superb season in securing runners up spot and also in being the only team to beat Champions Con A all season.
With the top two spots in the table now taken all eyes are on the close run battle for third spot between Legion A and West Devon B
SHOCK OF THE SEASON AS LOWLY CON C BEAT WD B
Making the long trip to WD B, lowly Con C could be forgiven for thinking it was in to the ‘lions den’. These days however Con have found a new sense of conviction and were about to prove the pundits wrong that they are no ones ‘whipping boys’. Ewings got things going for Con with a comfortable win over Gilchrist who seems to be struggling with his form of late. Captain Jago then built on last weeks first win of the season to grind out another win over veteran May to make it two for the Con’s. This frame seemed like an eternity but was only a mere 1 hour 10 minutes. A semblance of order was restored when WD’s Bath regained his touch to account for Neale. With the next frame being a ‘must win’ frame for WD it was to Con’s delight that Craze held his nerve to overcome Smith in a battle of attrition frame that went down to the black ball. With the game now in the bag it was up to John Rich to save WD’s blushes in the last frame. It was not to be though, despite dominating most of the frame, Rich could not prevent Con’s ‘star man’ Bassett from coming from behind to sneak the frame and make it 4 on the night for the Con’s. This game has got to go down as the shock of the season and whilst coming late in the season it is sure to reinforce Con C belief that they will be more than able to compete with the best next season.
A GIBBS 32 HELPS LEGION RUN WD CLOSE
Legion ran second place WD close in a tightly fought encounter. Gibbs was the highlight of the night with a superb 32 break to take out WD’s Hawke. WD bounced back with another win for Kevin Rich over Stewart with a nice 21 break on the way. Mark (Not The) Williams got back to winning ways again with a close win over Heathman to restore Legion’s advantage. Showing great character though WD hit back again to secure the win with solid wins for Emptage (20) over Woods and another robust performance from Hurford over Wickett. Consolation for Legion though was the 2 frames collected were enough to take them back up to third spot in the league again.
Billed as the ‘basement battle’ two struggling teams Con B and Con D slugged it out in another tight game. Con B looked ‘set fair’ with a superb potting game from Dolan over Day taking them one up, with another solid win for in form Roffey over Jankowski making it two. Not to be cowed Con D hit back with a real captains innings from Holmes who played some scintillating ‘power snooker’ to overpower Hattie Hurle. Next frame it was all square with Croucher at last producing the type of snooker all know he is capable of to overcome Wilson. The final deciding frame was a battle of Williams Guile and cunning over the flamboyance of Andrews potting. It looked all over for Andrews needing a snooker and the last two balls, when uncharacteristically Williams made an un forced foul to allow Andrews to take the last two balls and win it for Con D. This lose leaves Con B firmly rooted to the bottom of the table.
WEST DEVON TAKE CON A’s UNBEATEN RECORD
In the top of the table clash Con A lost their 100% unbeaten record to West Devon A in a tense hard fought encounter that went down to the last ball of the last frame. Kevin Rich continued his unbeaten ways with a slow start but eventually solid win over out of sorts Longden. Con bounced right back with Lacey fighting off a 24 comeback break from Heathman, taking a couple of pressure pots to make it all Square. The next frame between Emptage and Folley was evenly balanced for most of the frame, but in the end Emptage’s superior safety game forced the errors required to take it for WD. Back again came Con with Carruthers, who had to fight off a spirited challenge from Rob Heathman, drawing on all his experience to get over the line.
The final deciding frame looked all but in the bag for Con’s in form Evans with WD’s Hurford requiring 22 points from the remaining 22 on the table. Not to be deterred, Hurford kept his nerve, and potted 3 consecutive pressure balls to win by 1 point thus taking the spoils for WD and gaining revenge for their earlier reversal at the start of the season.
Another ‘Battle Royal’ was going on at The Legion who were entertaining WD B, with both teams looking for third spot in the league. Legion’s Gibbs made short work of Gilchrist with Woods (24) making even shorter work of Roger Rich, 10 minutes flat to be precise, in what must be the quickest frame of the season. Bath pulled one back for WD with another customary solid display, only for Legion Skipper Stewart to seal the win with a hard fought black ball win over John Rich who seems to be making a habit of loosing black ball games. To keep WD in the fray for third spot, seasoned campaigner May ground out the last frame to overcome Wickett and make it two for WD on the night.
Another first was happening at the Con Club with Jago’s Con C picking up their first win of the season over local rivals Con D. Croucher for Con D was well and truly thumped by Bassett and could only muster 3 points in the whole frame, this must also be a league record that Croucher will be less than pleased to hold. Two ‘re-spotted’ black ball games then went the way of Con C with Jago picking up his first win of the season over Holmes, whilst Ewings edged out Jankowski. Andrews got Con D on the board with a win over Neale but Craze put the ‘icing on the cake’ for Con C with a fine win over Day to make it a very pleasing 4 – 1 to Con C on the night. This win for Con C now lifts them above Con B and off the bottom of the league.
WEST DEVON B REGAIN THIRD SPOT
A 4 1 win over a lack lustre Con B was enough for WD B to regain third spot in the table again, and with it a possible place in Europe.
Things did not go according to plan in the first frame with Bath losing out to a steady performance from Con’s Loffey who kept his nerve despite a protracted safety spell at the end of the frame. In the next frame a bit of local Con Club history was made with the first ever Lady player, Angie Ward standing in at the last minute. It was not a fairy tail ending however with Roger Rich running in comfortable winner, employing his favourite ‘off 4 cushions’ shots to perfection. Angie was not disgraced though, she acquitted herself well, and was not overawed by the occasion. Next was the highlight of the night during WD’s Jack May’s win over Hattie Hurle, when May called for a cue extension. Having tried to put it on back to front, then sideways, then on the tip end of the cue, Jack had to be rescued by Skipper Gilchrist who’s timely intervention saved the day and avoided any further delay or confusion. The following frames further stamped WD’s superiority on the game with comfortable wins for Gilchrist over Dolan and in form John Rich over Hoar. This win sets up an interesting climax to the season with Legion and West Devon B fighting ‘tooth and nail’ for third spot.
LEGIONS RISE UP THE TABLE CONTINUES
A 4 1 win over bottom placed Con C was enough to put Legion into third place in the table.
Things did not start too bright though with Williams (Not The) losing out in a black ball game to Con’s Bassett. Bouncing back Legion’s Gibbs accounted for Maloney with a nice 25 on the way, whilst Woods took out Neale. Wickett then proceeded to make short work of Jago who thought he was playing billiards with several ‘in offs’ and many unforced errors. A final captains innings for Stewart beating Ewings made in four on the night for the Legion.
Con D recent bad form continued with a sound 5 – 0 thrashing by close neighbours and top of the league Con A. Croucher started the rot losing to Longden who started slow but finished solidly.
Mole was no match for ‘potting wonder boy’ Carruthers who never looked in trouble. A solid safety game from Jankowski almost pulled it of for Con D but folley kept his nerve to see it through for Con A. Andrews on next was no match for the snooker sensation Evans who made it home comfortably. The last game was difficult to call with Con A’s reserve man Mills eventually edging out Day in a close encounter that went down to the last couple of balls.
This win extends Con A’s lead at the top of the table to 11 points with 3 games to go, and ratchets up the pressure on their next opponent, second place West Devon A, making it a ‘must win’ game for the West Devon.
CON A GO SIX CLEAR AT TOP OF LEAGUE
A convincing 5 – 0 win for Con A over third place WD B took them six points clear at the top of the league. It was not all one way traffic though with at least two frames that could have gone either way. A customary solid start for Carruthers with a 31 break meant there was no way back for a fighting Jack May. Lacey made it two, but was made to fight all the way by John Rich who again, can count himself unlucky loosing to a fluked Lacey blue ball. Next on Babb had an easier ride with a solid potting display, which on the night was too much for WD Skipper Gilchrist. Another Accomplished Evans display disposed of Bath in the battle of the elder statesmen, with Evans never allowing Bath to settle and a nice 21 break settling the issue. Final frame could have gone either way with Longden eventually accounting for Roger Rich who never looked out of the game until the final few balls.
THREE MAN LEGION TAKE OUT CON D
Result of the season so far must go to Legion A, who despite only having three men managed to get a 3 – 2 win at Con D.
Captain Stewart, after a 1 hour marathon, set the tone with a win over Heartfield. Legion’s Gibbs then accounted for out of sorts Jankowski to make it two. To complete the unexpected victory Wickett saw off in form Andrews, a nice 22 break being the deciding factor.
Across the Square, Con B under the new stewardship of Hattie Hurle, were having a tough time against Second in the table West Devon A.
Hattie himself led from the front but was no match for one of the leagues top player Kevin Rich who won, despite a spirited fight from Hurle. A tight black ball win for Hurford over new boy Hoar made it two for WD. Highlight of the evening followed with a lovely 30 from Hawke seeing off Con’s Willson. Emptage made it four taking out Roffey with Colin Heathman completing the ‘fifer’ by coming from behind to beat Dolan in a close final frame contest.
A CARRUTHERS 58 SETS THE NEW STANDARD
Con A extended their lead at the top of the table to 6 points with a resounding 5-0 win over local rivals Con B. In a one sided game it was the potting sensation Evans who got things going with a comfortable win over ‘new boy’ Sam Lawson. With Evans hitting a nice 24 on the way it was very much “welcome to the league Sam”. Folley continued with a customary ‘grind’ to oust Holmes. Highlight of the night followed with Carruthers setting the league highest break standard with a sublime 58, make no mistake this was a good break with several difficult pots taken to keep the break going. All his opponent Grindley could do was sit and admire the show. Babb encountered early resistance from Dolan but as the game progressed his strength came to the fore, as a useful 25 break was enough to see him home. Similarly Lacey encountered early resistance from Hattie Hurle but his seasoned campaigning experience told in the end as he overcame the challenge to make it a ‘Fifer’ for Con A.
With this being the last game of the year before the Christmas recess, the League would like to thank all the players, and their respective clubs, for their participation this year, and wish everyone a very happy Christmas.
The League will recommence on Thursday 7th January.
GOOD NIGHT FOR THE WEST DEVON
There was no Christmas cheer dished up for the Con Club yesterday, just a couple of good ‘hidings’ as both West Devon teams romped home with comfortable wins.
Second in the table WD A narrowed the gap at the top of the table, cantering in with a ‘fifer’ over bottom placed Con C. With the exception of Moloney taking WD’s skipper Colin Heathman to a black ball game, it was all one way traffic for the WD. Hurford, K Rich, Emtage and Hawke all having comfortable wins over their opponents. K Rich producing a couple of entertaining visits to the table with 24 and 22 breaks, whilst not to be outdone, Emptage knocked in a nice 22. This is one Con C will want to forget quickly.
On the north side of Bedford Square WD B were also having a good night gaining revenge from an earlier defeat at the hands of Con D by posting a convincing 4-1 win. Roger Rich was in good touch taking out Croucher, whilst Bath, solid as ever, made short work of Holmes who could only muster 5 points in the process. ‘Rising Star’ Andrews gave the Con’s a glimmer of hope with a convincing win over Smith, showing he is fast becoming one of the better players in the league. In form John Rich held his nerve to fight off a spirited comeback by Heartfield to win on the black ball. The final frame was a tight affair with Con’s Robin Day taking WD skipper Gilchrist all the way, Gilchrist in true captains fashion though saw it through to make it 4 for WD.
LACEY NEW BIG BREAK MAN
This was not as one sided as the 5 – 0 score suggests, with Con D putting up a brave fight before going down to a strong Con A. Lacey carried on from the previous week with some solid potting against new boy Lillicrap, culminating in the seasons highest break so far of 34. Babb was made to fight all the way by Andrews before producing a 24 to ease him home. Carruthers took out Day and Evans seems invincible with another powerful display against out of sorts Holmes. The final frame was not one for the snooker purists, with long periods of ‘nip and tuck’ ensuring that the most consistent safety player would be the one to prevail. This Folley managed to do and effectively ground Croucher down to make it a ‘Fifer’ for Con A.
ROUND UP 26 11 09
Bottom of the league Con C although losing, produced one of their better performances of the season in narrowly going down 2 – 3 to Legion A. Ewings got things off to a good start with a close win over Parr, only for Legion to come back with Gibbs beating Neale. Con’s skipper Clive Jago then came close to his first win of the season only to be squeezed out by Woods in a black ball game. Bassett proving again how he is fast becoming a force to reckon with in the league, pulled the Con’s level with a fine win over Stewart, compiling the leagues highest break of 32 in the process. The deciding frame was a bit of a battle that eventually went the way of Legions Wickett after a brave effort from Con’s Toby Jago.
West Devon B bounced back from last weeks drubbing to produce an accomplished display against Con B with a 4 – 1 win. Veteran Bath was just too consistent for Con’s new boy Holmes and never looked in trouble. John Rich playing one of his best games of the season ruthlessly brushed aside a lack - lustre Hattie Hurle to make it two, keeping the white on the table in the process. The Con’s nearly pulled one back as Dolan could consider himself slightly unlucky to run out the loser to Roger rich in a tight finish. Skipper Gilchrist solid as a rock again accounted for Con’s other new boy Armstrong, although Armstrong showed signs that with match practise he will be a good acquisition for the Con’s. Saving the blushes Willson pulled the final frame back for the Con’s to salvage something on the night.
ROUND UP 19 11 09
Con A march on with a ‘Fifer’ against WD B. Folley fought off a superb comeback from J Rich in a game he squandered chances to win earlier but in the end was lucky to get over the line, courtesy of another Rich ‘in off’ the black.
The Evans ‘potting machine’ rattled in a 97 against an uncharacteristically out of sorts May, whilst Babb steadied his nerve to overcome a good challenge from R Rich. Bath gave Lacey a scare going into a 20 plus lead, but Lacey composed himself with some solid potting to pull it back with a comfortable win in the end. There was no shame for Gilchrist who despite a solid performance was outgunned by one of the strongest players in the league, Carruthers, who compiled a nice 27 break in the process.
Legion A continued their run of recent good form by coming back from two down to win 3 – 2 against Con D.
Tight black ball wins for Jankowski over Wood and Andrews over Parr gave Con D the dream start. Stewart for the Legion stopped the rot with a captains innings to pull one back and Wickett made it all square with a win over Day. Mark Williams (Not The) completed the comeback with a nice win over Heartfield to cap a good evening for the Legion.
Not too many scares for West Devon A as they completed a 4 – 1 win over four man Con B. Roberta Heathman started things off with a win over Dolan. In form Cook pulled one back for the Con’s to raise their hopes of a shock result. Normality was restored for the WD with K Rich proving too strong for Hurle. Roffey put up a good fight but Emptage came through in the end to make it 4 for the WD.