WEST COUNTRY NEWS
Sandford Orcas v Dove Valley
Yet another successful weekend of billiards was held at Mill St.
Club, Wincanton and commenced on Saturday 27th April with
the Sandford Scrumpys hosting the Dove Valley Black Puddings
in their 12th friendly match.
Both leagues fielded a six-man team with games being played for
55 minutes, 3 of which were very close-run affairs. Our standard
of play on this occasion was reflected in the rather indifferent
breaks recorded, the best being a 37 by Dove Valley’s young
Darren Feeley. If we had a trophy for the most improved player
Darren would surely take it. In the event, Sandford took the
unique Black Pudding/Scrumpy trophy on aggregate after the
matches finished level a three apiece.
|C. Walters||228||D. Feeley||233|
|J. Masters||243||B. Hayes||112|
|C. White||155||J Heathcote||166|
|M. Gillham||176||G Coe||207|
|M. Woolmington||140||M. Jennings||136|
|R. Mitchem||155||M. Feeley||84|
Top Cue & Professional Exhibition
The 6th Top Cue Event was staged at Wincanton’s Mill St. Club on
Sunday 28th April, when 28 players from a large geographical catchment
area took part in the all-day activities. Preliminary rounds were played
on a 3 game basis, players having been randomly drawn two weeks
previously, thus ensuring that there was no element of seeding involved.
As last year, the players were rewarded by way of bonus points for
both wins and aggregate scores, the idea being to encourage active play
and to discourage ‘treading water’ when a few points in front and the
time bell imminent.
Some useful breaks were recorded in the preliminaries notably by Justin
Cole (54), Keith Langley (58) and Michael White (57 & 84) but the
man really on form was Dave Burgess with 63, 67, 89 and 92 to his
Preliminaries over and collating completed, it was time for the two
highest aggregate scorers from Group A (those winning all 3 prelims),
Group B (those winning 2 games), Group C (those winning 1 game)
and Group D (those not winning any games) to contest the finals. In
the Group A contest for the Top Cue Rose Bowl, it was once again
Dave Burgess who prevailed over Brian Harvey who just could not get
to grips with the table. Burgess made the highest break of the event
|D. Burgess||252||B. Harvey||163|
|D. Feeley||213||K. Langley||139|
|W. Andress||301||E. Shorney||136|
|D. Ellis||182||J. Bristow||157|
After an interval of about 40 minutes during which time a raffle was
held and the room arranged for seating the audience, Chris Shutt, our
professional for the evening, presented the trophies followed by a near
2 hour session of unfettered exhibition play. Whether Chris also found
the table difficult to play on was not determined, suffice to say that he
did not match his 301 and 316 breaks playing on the adjacent table
when last here in 1999. Nevertheless in producing breaks of 100, 104,
116, 141 and 144 he managed to assign to his amateur opponents, Dave
Burgess and Brian Harvey, the near total role of spectators.
Instead of trick shots, Chris and Brian demonstrated a revised format
for pro billiards which I have devised aided by David Smith (referee)
and Ian McConnell (player) and for the first time in my experience, I
saw a billiards audience on the edge of their seats and not lying backwards
in a soporific state waiting for the bell to arouse them. The new format
evoked a mixed reception from those who had read and studied my
printed handout, but many of the players reacted with at least interest
and many with enthusiasm.
If I am able to stage the Top Cue Tournament again in 2003 I intend
having the professional slot played to the new format with 2 pros
competing for cash incentives, based on (1) number of games won, (2)
highest break and/or (3) a maximum break. More of this later.
A competition for guessing the pro’s best break was won by Justin
Cole who received £34; the other £34 being added to the charity money.
As a result of all our activities and the generosity of our many sponsors
and donors, a sum of £300 has been given to Cancer Research UK with
further sums of £50 each to the youth sections of Mere & Wincanton
Clubs to help further the games of billiards and snooker.