THE highest ever league break in the 72 year history of the Stourbridge & District Snooker League was made on Hotshots Snooker Club’s newly-installed Star table when Jamie Brown compiled a 143 total clearance, an achievement all the more worthwhile as the pockets on such a table are tighter than those of any other club table and even those featured on TV. Jamie’s great effort came against Gavin Foy of Bearwood Cons, to complete a 5-0 victory to keep Hotshots A within three points of the joint leaders of the Premier Division.

The break equalled that of Alan Hooper of Brandhall Labour, who achieved that feat in a knock-out match 21 years ago, whereas the highest league breaks had been Terry Murphy’s 142 for On Cue SC in 1993 and Jon Pritchett’s 141 at the Shenstone Club in 2009, coincidentally against Gavin Foy’s teammate, Paul Gibson.

The division’s joint leaders both won 3-2 against high-ranking opponents: Amblecote Institute A went 3-0 ahead against 3rd placed Norton Social A, who fought back with the last two frames, while Baggeridge Social A edged past defending champions, Townsend Social away from home, thanks to Eliott Bastable’s comfortable win in the decider.

Pockets SC A defeated the bottom team, Kingswinford Cons C 4-1 to stay within ten points of the leaders, while Brandhall Labour’s Andy Round took pink and black in the decider away to West Midland Police’s Kev Franklin. Earlier in the week, in a rearranged match at Bearwood Cons, the Police’s Mark Sheehan had to settle for a 76 break, when fractionally out of position on the last red.

First Division: Six successive victories had taken Kinver Constitutional A to the top of the First Division but they lost 3-2 at home to Moor Pool & Snooker and were joined at the top by their own C team. Warren Knight, with a black ball success and Neil Gennard gave the visitors a 2-0 lead, but Dean Banks and Graham Tranter levelled the match. In the decider Ian Priest of Moor P & S beat Jim Woodhouse, to end a sequence of 15 home wins, stretching back 14 months for the Kinver player.

Kinver’s C team won 3-2 on the tables of Kingswinford Cons A thanks to Adam Sprague, Tom Postings and Gregg Reece, who was able to celebrate his 14th win out of 15 on his return to his former club; John Rees and Tim Carter earned some consolation for the hosts.

Two successive defeats had cost Norton Social B their position as league leaders but they bounced back with a 4-1 win at home to Amblecote Institute D with Luke Grosvenor’s breaks of 39 and 40 giving them the ideal start. They are only three points off the Kinver teams with a match in hand, sharing third place with Pockets SC B, who swapped places with Bahia’s SC A, after winning 3-2 on their tables. Given a good start by Jamie Shuck with his 14th straight win and Gavin Evans, Pockets went 3-0 up before the home team fought back.

Dudley Ex-Servicemen continued their progress at home to Baggeridge Social B, with Tom Pearsall winning his third successive deciding frame, and they were joined in sixth place by Kinver’s B team, 4-1 winners at home to Amblecote Instutute C, with Chris Randle and Mark Dowler in fluent form.

Old Edwardians A won 3-2 away to Amblecote Institute B, Paul Garbett taking the decider to lift them into 8th position, yet only 10 points off the top of this competitive league; with 11 rounds of matches still remaining, there is much to play for.

Second Division: Bahia’s SC B shocked the Second Division leaders, Kingswinford Snooker Centre with a 3-2 win away from home. Gary Skinner, Andy Martin and Pete Jukes won, but Rich Loftus, and the still unbeaten Steve Ballinger at least secured the frames to keep the leaders on top, albeit by the slenderest of margins…one point.

Amblecote RBL B’s fine run of form continued with their seventh win in a row, 4-1 away to Old Edwardians B, to enable them to climb above their opponents into second place. Steve & Alex Bull, Bill Crowther and Richard Conway won four closely-fought frames, with Steve Ball replying.

Rob Boylin’s deciding frame win for Amblecote RBL A at home to fellow challengers, Wombourne, enabled them to close to within three points of Old Eds, six points from the top, while Stourbridge Institute D, who were able to celebrate a second 5-0 scoreline in two weeks, at home to Kinver D, maintained their progress into 5th place, still ten points adrift, but closing fast in this, their first season together.

Another new team, Amblecote Institute E, also competed well at home to Stourbridge Institute B, but had only Sam Mattocks’ frame to show for their efforts. The visitors’ 4-1 success lifted them out of the bottom two, and included a 12th win of the season for sprightly Harry Jones.

Stourbridge & District Snooker League 15-16 January 2020

Premier Division results:

Bearwood Cons 1 (P.Gibson) West Midlands Police 4 (C.Millward 30, G.Sloan 42, P.Gibbons, M.Sheehan 76)

Pockets SC A 4 (G.Smith 35, T.Pepperall 39, A.Smith 41, R.Pepperall) Kingswinford Cons C 1 (L.Bennett)

Amblecote Inst A 3 (R.Clark, A.Sidaway, D.Oakes 30) Norton Social A 2 (S.Mason, R.Pitt)

Hotshots SC A 5 (M.Sutton 49, N.Beckley 45, B.Sembi 44, R.Stokes 44, Jamie Brown 143) Bearwood Cons 0

West Midlands Police 2 (M.Sheehan, C.Millward) Brandhall Labour 3 (S.Perry 42, R.Howen, A.Round)

Townsend Social 2 (K.Ashmore, D.Thompson) Baggeridge Social A 3 (L.Payne, D.Hall, E,Bastable)

Hotshots SC B bye

First Division results:

Norton Social B 4 (L.Grosvenor 39, 40 P.Bowen A.Brown, T.Brown) Amblecote Inst D 1 (A.Kensett 31)

Bahia’s SC A 2 (J.Macdivitt, R.Bahia) Pockets SC B 3 (J.Shuck, G.Evans, D.Timmington)

Dudley Ex-Servicemen 3 (S.Childs, M.Short, T.Pearsall) Baggeridge Soc B 2 (F.Bennett, M.Collingridge)

Kinver Const A 2 (D.Banks, G.Tranter) Moor Pool & Snooker 3 (W.Knight, N.Gennard, I.Priest)

Amblecote Inst B 2 (M.Cook, A.Moore) S/b Old Edwardians A 3 (D.Woodall, G.Dunn, P.Garbett)

Kingswinford Cons A 2 (J.Rees, T.Carter) Kinver Constitutional C 3 (A.Sprague, T.Postings, G.Reece)

Kinver Const B 4 (N.Jennings, A.Tromans, C.Randle, M.Dowler 32) Amblecote Inst C 1 (Colin Homer)

Second Division results:

Kingswinford SC 2 (R.Loftus, S.Ballinger) Bahia’s SC B 3 (G.Skinner, A.Martin, P.Jukes)

Amblecote RBL A 3 (Bill & Ben Green, R.Boylin) Wombourne 2 (J.Wooldridge, R.Mason)

S/b Old Edwardians B 1 (Steve Ball) Amblecote RBL B 4 (S.Bull, W.Crowther, R.Conway, A.Bull)

Stourbridge Institute D 5 (D. & D.Bacciocchi, C.Crumpton, W.Gardener, P.Robinson) Kinver Const D 0

Amblecote Inst E 1 (S.Mattocks) Stourbridge Inst B 4 (H.Jones, M.Daniels, T.Pardoe, T.Hamilton)

Report and results submitted by Stourbridge & District Snooker League