Tommy Arnott Invitation Billiards Handicap
Ironopolis Club, Middlesbrough
(7th-8th August, 2002)
Afew weeks after his success in the St. Peter’s tournament, Lagan
was again in action in the second of the region’s annual Pro-Am
events. The Tommy Arnott memorial was played over two consecutive
nights at the Ironopolis Club, Middlesbrough on 7th-8th August 2002.
With Geoff Charville, as last year’s winner, seeded through to the
quarter-finals, Lagan found himself playing in the initial qualifying
group which were level games of one-hour duration.
Lagan emerged from this initial test without undue difficulty and was
joined in the concluding stages by Mark Hatton and brothers Darren
and Gary Kell. In his qualifying game against Tony Mackinder, Darren
Kell set the highest break for the Amateur players with 113.
The quarter-finals brought the allotted handicaps into play and the
matches reduced to 45 minutes to enable the remained of the tournament
to be completed during the evening. The first match saw an intriguing
contest between Darren Kell and his team-mate Geoff Charville. Now
that Lagan has joined the professional ranks, these two players are
widely regarded as having the best claim his position as top Amateur
player in the North-East. As they both represent the Ironopolis Club
their meetings are rare and this one was given extra spice by Charville,
largely due to his success in the competition last year, conceding 20
points to Kell. A careful game which saw Kell establish a lead of
seventy points, was turned on its head by Charville when successive
contributions of 41 and 78, gave him an advantage he would hold to the
end. Despite a great rally from Kell which saw him close to within four
points in the last two minutes, his failure at this stage allowed Charville
to hold the table and secure victory by 16 points.
In the other matches, Lee Lagan repeated his success over Chris Shutt
with a conclusive 297-178 victory, Lagan’s 20 points start being
superfluous. Neither player approached anything near their best form
on a humid, sultry evening, which hardly provided the best conditions
Paul Bennett also struggled to recover the 80 points he was conceding
to erstwhile team-mate Mark Hatton from the Hemlington Club, and
with Hatton matching him break for break the World No.12 had to
conceded the battle after 45 minutes when still 97 points adrift.
David Causier required only 20 minutes of his allotted time to retrieve
the 150 points he was conceding to Gary Kell and pass his opponent
on his way to an easy 425-225 victory.
Mark Hatton had been playing consistently well throughout this
competition, and some felt that the 100 points he was receiving from
David Causier may well be too much for the World No.3. However,
Causier rose to the challenge and although still trailing by eighty points
midway through the match, then put together the highest break of the
event, a magnificent 286 (18 minutes), which secured a 401-226 win.
Causier averaged 57.3 for this match and Hatton finished with creditable
figures of 25.2.
In the other semi-final, Geoff Charville put up a fine performance to
eliminate Lagan. Building immediately on his 30 points start, he allowed
Lagan to get no closer, finishing winner by 55 points.
The final was extended from 45 minutes to one hour, but strangely, and
crucially as it turned out, the handicaps remained unaltered with Charville
receiving 50 points from Causier. Although, this hardly seemed to
matter as Causier swept into the lead with a 68 at his first scoring visit
and building on this with 62 secured a 165-106 advantage and seemed
to he heading for an easy victory. But this only brought out the fighting
qualities in Charville who produced his best break of the night, a fine
effort of 90 taking him into the lead once more. In a tense finish another
break of 43 from Charville was countered by one of 56 from Causier,
bringing him to within 13 points with four minutes remaining. Charville’s
next chance was his last, as failing to score, Causier played out the
remaining time to win by 12 points. Had the handicaps been correctly
adjusted for the increased time, the extra 17 points which would have
been allowed to Charville may well have produced a different result.
The prizes were presented by Derrick Arnott, with Causier receiving
£240 for his win, plus £60 for the high break of 286. The special award
for “outstanding achievement” was given to Phil Richardson for his
work in the local Leagues.
|Lee Connor||217||(n/r)||Alf Nolan||155||(n/r)|
|Gary Kell||189||(n/r)||John Hartley||183||(n/r)|
72, 54, 50
91, 87, 72
|155||(9.1)||Darren Kell (+20)||139||(7.0)|
106, 90, 66, 54
|425||(25.0)||Gary Kell (+150)||225||(4.7)|
|Mark Hatton (+80)|
|Lee Lagan (+20)|
83, 74, 70
|401||(57.3)||Mark Hatton (+100)|
|Geoff Charville (+30)|
68, 62, 59
|280||Geoff Charville (+50)|