Friday 23 February 2018 | 04:33
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View Report - Week 4

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INTER TOWN MATCH PROVES A REAL NAIL BITER On Friday night Telford C entertained a strong and experienced Dudley outfit in the Inter Town competition at Shifnal. The drama started in the afternoon when Tom Mulholland was forced to pull out due to work commitments and skipper Noel Hitch had to re-shuffle the Telford line up with Lee Cross stepping in with just a few hours to spare. On table 2 Lee began confidently with a couple of nice pots before Rob Thompson (who hits every ball so hard it brings all 6 pockets in to play) settled and a 31 break helped him to put the visitors ahead, winning 70-16. On table 1 however it was a different story with Aaron Sparkes dominating the early stages, racing into a 54 point advantage. At this level of competition though nothing can be taken for granted and Phil Thompson found a nasty snooker for Aaron. With the aid of the miss rule Aaron's lead was cut to just 18, but Aaron showed loads of bottle as he cleared the colours, Phil throwing in the towel as the brown dropped into the pocket to run out a 76-41 victor levelling the match score at 1-1. Next up on table 2 was a rather nervous Tomass Gailums for Telford, who had earned his place with some good league and competition performances in his debut season in snooker. It was Dudley's Peter Lewis who began the stronger and looked to be heading for a comfortable win. Tomass knocked in a lovely opening red which seemed to calm his nerves as a nice 23 break brought him right back into the frame. Unfortunately a jawed yellow down the cush with the colours all in the open let Peter back in to take the frame 49-29 and put his side up 2-1. Back on table 1 it was the home side's Lewis Round who started brightly, a good 26 break helped as he bossed the early encounters before a really poor run of luck turned the frame on its head. The third of the Thompson trio, Dave, took full advantage and edged ahead before snookering Lewis on the pink. A great 2 cushioned escape from Lewis only to see the cue ball run an extra inch meaning Dave could sink the pink for a 52-37 win. Telford C 1, Dudley 3. Nothing less than winning the remaining 3 frames would now see the home side join the other 3 Telford teams in the last 16, but they couldn't ..could they? With the pressure now really on it was young Ben Godding who stepped up on table 1 against Daryl Payne for Dudley. Pressure? What pressure? Ben strode around the table and played one of his best frames of match snooker as he calmly kept his side in the tie, convincingly winning 66-2. Attention now turned to table 2 with Chris Petford taking on visiting skipper Jason Colbourne. Jason is known as a heavy scorer so whoever got in first was always likely to be crucial. After the early safety exchanges it was Chris that got in with a tremendous 47 break. However not to be deterred Jason hit back and a 38 break helped take him into the lead. With the match hanging in the balance Chris held his nerve to win the frame of the night 74-62 and level the match at 3-3. In the deciding frame Steve Fletcher faced the experienced Alan Moore, who played match snooker of a high standard never really leaving Steve any kind of opportunity to get a foothold in the frame, as he took a 40 point lead. Steve dug in and took the last 2 reds with colours to reduce the arrears to just 22. A slight chance looked possible but a missed opportunity to lay a snooker let Alan in and he duly cleared to seal the frame 66-28 and the match 4 frames to 3. I think everyone would agree it was a great match which could have gone either way on the night. Special thanks to Frank Williams and John Rawlins for refereeing, John Fallows, Steve Fletcher and Rob Withington for marking the boards, to Chris and his staff at Shifnal for the food and hosting the match and to Linda for taking all the photos. Good luck to Jason and his team in the next round and thanks to everyone for making it a good night.

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