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Oliver Sykes hits the front

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  • Oliver Sykes hits the front

    OLIVER Sykes now leads the Cuestars Under-21 Gold Tour rankings after collecting his third winner’s trophy of the season at Fareham Snooker Club.

    The talented left-hander from Chandler’s Ford edged first-time finalist Elliott Weston (Portsmouth) 3-2 from 2-1 down to clinch the seventh leg.

    It was a magnificent display by the 13-year-old, who knocked out rankings leader Bradley Cowdroy (Bournemouth) in the last-four in another thrilling five-frame match.

    Sykes battled through those two mentally draining five-frame matches in his trademark calm and composed manner.

    “I try to keep calm and, even if I do miss a ball, don’t show reaction,” said The Sniper.

    “There was a lot of safety with Brad. Against Elliott, it was pretty tight but I managed to stick in there and keep going. He’s improved a lot.”

    Sykes, who pocketed £100 prize money, now leads Cowdroy by nine points with three of the ten legs remaining.

    Third-placed Connor Benzey (Eastleigh) didn’t drop a frame in the group stages but lost 3-0 to Weston in the last-four of the event sponsored by the host club.

    Weston climbed to fourth and looked comfortable on the club’s professional standard Star tables.

    His dad, Jason, a former professional, said the 18-year-old has only been playing the game for two years and already has a high break of 91.

    “He has improved very quickly,” he added.

    Top Spot Snooker Club, Havant, hosts the eighth legs of ten on Sunday, March 17.

    For more information about Fareham SC, visit


    Connor Benzey: 61, 43.
    Bradley Cowdroy: 53.
    Elliott Weston: 46.


    ROUND-ROBIN GROUP A: 1st, Bradley Cowdroy (Greenbaize, Bournemouth); 2nd, Elliott Weston (Top Spot, Havant); 3rd, Ronnie Sullivan (Frames, Coulsdon); 4th, Dan Sykes (Chandlers Ford SC); 5th, Steven Hughes (Chandlers Ford SC).

    ROUND-ROBIN GROUP B: 1st, Connor Benzey (Chandlers Ford SC; 2nd, Oliver Sykes (Chandlers Ford SC); 3rd, Ryan Hughes (Chandlers Ford SC); 4th, Chloe White (Waterlooville Sports Bar); 5th, Arron Smith (Selsey RBL).

    SEMI-FINALS (15 points): O Sykes 3-2 Cowdroy, Weston 3-0 Benzey.

    FINAL (£100/£25, 25/18 points): O Sykes 3-2 Weston.

    Kearns books Gold Tour promotion

    WILTSHIRE potter Shane Kearns is in the mix to claim the Cuestars Under-21 Silver Tour rankings title after winning the seventh leg at Fareham Snooker Club.

    The 17-year-old from Swindon proved he is well in contention by dispatching the top two in the knockout rounds.

    And he earned a place on next season’s Gold Tour with a personal best break in the second frame of the final.

    Kearns, who also won the third leg on home tables at Jesters Snooker Club last November, wrapped up a 2-0 victory over Nat Kidner (Bournemouth) with a run of 60.

    “The first frame was quite close then I managed to pull it together and start playing well,” he said.

    Talking about his highest break, he laughed: “It felt good.”

    Kearns won two out of his four group-stage matches and qualified for the knockout on frames difference.

    But then he overcame second-placed Richard Hillgrove 2-0 and rankings leader Louie Leighton 2-1.

    Reflecting on the day, he said: “My game’s been on and off but I started playing well towards the end.”

    It’s tight at the top of the rankings following the event sponsored by Fareham Snooker Club.

    Hillgrove’s bid to overtake his Basildon Snooker Club practice partner Leighton was not helped by the fact he had to borrow a cue after leaving his at home in Southend.

    Leighton extended his lead to eight points by progressing one round further.

    Riley Ellis (Clyffe Pypard, North Wilts) remains in third place, four points adrift of Hillgrove, following a 2-1 semi-final defeat by Kidner.

    Kearns is one point further back in fourth.

    Top Spot Snooker Club, Havant, hosts the eighth legs of ten on Sunday, March 17.

    For more information about Fareham SC, visit


    Shane Kearns: 60.
    Louie Leighton: 42.
    O’Shay Scott: 38, 33.
    Riley Ellis: 31.


    ROUND-ROBIN GROUP A: 1st, Louie Leighton (Basildon SC); 2nd, Will Forster (Mayfair, Gosport); 3rd, Dean Russell (Waterlooville Sports Bar); 4th, Zak Truscott (Waterlooville Sports Bar).

    ROUND-ROBIN GROUP B: 1st, O’Shay Scott (Chandlers Ford SC); 2nd, Richard Hillgrove (Basildon SC); 3rd, Kaine Petty (Salisbury SC); 4th, Mason Wilson (Academy, Basingstoke); 5th, Callum White (Waterlooville Sports Bar).

    ROUND-ROBIN GROUP C: 1st, Riley Ellis (Chandlers Ford SC); 2nd, Shane Kearns (Jesters, Swindon); 3rd, Nat Kidner (Greenbaize, Bournemouth); 4th, Samuel Laxton (Waterlooville Sports Bar); 5th, Ben Crump (Stoke SC, Gosport).

    QUARTER-FINALS (12 points): Kearns 2-0 Hillgrove, Ellis 2-0 Forster, Kidner 2-1 Scott, Leighton 2-0 Petty.

    SEMI-FINALS (15 points): Kearns 2-1 Leighton, Kidner 2-1 Ellis.

    FINAL (25/18 points): Kearns 2-0 Kidner.

    Third win for rankings leader Jenkins

    OWEN Jenkins has picked up his third winner’s trophy of the season on the Cuestars Under-21 Bronze Tour.

    The ten-year-old from Havant extended his lead at the top of the rankings following an excellent performance at Fareham Snooker Club.

    He overcame first-time finalist Taylor Elliott 2-0 to clinch the seventh leg.

    Jenkins, who recorded his first half-century break of 54 four days previously, was unbeaten in all nine frames throughout the day.

    But he reckons there is more in the tank.

    “I think I played well but I don’t think I played my very best,” he said.

    Taylor had taken a 29-point lead in the first frame but Jenkins clawed back the deficit and won a re-spotted black.

    Jenkins leads his Waterlooville Sports Bar clubmate Thomas Sharp by 17 points with three of the ten legs to play.

    Elliott certainly had a day to remember. The ten-year-old from Swindon, who made his Cuestars debut ten months ago, had never progressed past the last-eight before.

    He subjected Sharp (Portsmouth) to his sixth semi-final defeat of the season and then stroked in a new high break of 24 in the first frame against Jenkins.

    Daniel Walter, another Portsmouth lad, moved up to fifth place after his first appearance in the last-four.

    Jenkins, who beat Walter 2-0 with runs of 24 and 21, said: “He was playing well but then I started to make some 20s to win the match.”

    Earlier, Thomas McEvoy (Warminster) posted a personal best 23 break in his group-stage win over Dylan Smith (Tunbridge Wells).

    And in a headache for organisers, three of the four round-robin groups needed three-way play-offs to determine the qualifiers.

    The previous evening, quarter-finalist Katie Griffin played an exhibition frame against world champion Mark Williams at Jesters Snooker Club, Swindon.

    Top Spot Snooker Club, Havant, hosts the eighth legs of ten on Sunday, March 17.

    For more information about event sponsor Fareham SC, visit


    Owen Jenkins: 24, 21.
    Taylor Elliott: 24.
    Thomas McEvoy: 23.


    ROUND-ROBIN GROUP A: 1st, Owen Jenkins (Waterlooville Sports Bar); 2nd, Taylor Elliott (147 SC, Swindon); joint 3rd, Tyler Mack (Waterlooville Sports Bar) and William Thomson (Chandlers Ford SC).

    ROUND-ROBIN GROUP B: 1st, Thomas Sharp (Waterlooville Sports Bar); 2nd, Katie Griffin (Jesters, Swindon); 3rd, Will Kempson (Salisbury SC); 4th, Ryan Kneller (Waterlooville Sports Bar).

    ROUND-ROBIN GROUP C: 1st, Thomas McEvoy (Salisbury SC); 2nd, Dylan Smith (Victoria SC, Tunbridge Wells); 3rd, Jaydon Elliott (147 SC, Swindon); 4th, Freddie Turner (Salisbury SC).

    ROUND-ROBIN GROUP D: 1st, Daniel Walter (Mayfair, Gosport); 2nd, Harry Wyatt (Chandlers Ford SC); joint 3rd, George Laxton (Waterlooville Sports Bar) and Sam Walter (Mayfair, Gosport); 5th, James Slade (Crucible, Newbury).

    QUARTER-FINALS (12 points): D Walter 2-0 Griffin, Sharp 2-0 Wyatt, T Elliott 2-1 McEvoy, Jenkins 2-0 Smith.

    SEMI-FINALS (15 points): T Elliott 2-0 Sharp, Jenkins 2-0 D Walter.

    FINAL (25/18 points): Jenkins 2-0 T Elliott.

    Sullivan gains consolation prize in Fareham

    LONDONER Ronnie Sullivan beat Portsmouth potter Samuel Laxton in the final of the Plate competition during the seventh legs of the Cuestars Under-21 Gold, Silver and Bronze Tours at Fareham Snooker Club.

    Sullivan had won two of his four group-stage matches in Gold while Laxton had only lost to both finalists in his Silver group.

    Debutant Ryan Kneller (Waterlooville) made a new high break of 25 in his last-16 victory over six-year-old William Thomson (Eastleigh).

    Top Spot Snooker Club, Havant, hosts the eighth legs of ten on Sunday, March 17.

    For more information about event sponsor Fareham SC, visit


    Ronnie Sullivan: 48.
    Chloe White: 28.
    Ryan Kneller: 25.
    Samuel Laxton: 24.


    PRELIM: Ryan Kneller (Waterlooville Sports Bar) beat James Slade (Crucible, Newbury).

    LAST-16: Kneller beat William Thomson (Chandlers Ford SC), Will Kempson (Salisbury SC) beat Ben Crump (Stoke SC, Gosport), Dean Russell (Waterlooville Sports Bar) beat Zak Truscott (Waterlooville Sports Bar), Samuel Laxton (Waterlooville Sports Bar) beat Steven Hughes (Chandlers Ford SC), Callum White (Waterlooville Sports Bar) beat Freddie Turner (Salisbury SC), Sam Walter (Mayfair, Gosport) beat Tyler Mack (Waterlooville Sports Bar), Chloe White (Waterlooville Sports Bar) beat Jaydon Elliott (147 SC, Swindon), Ronnie Sullivan (Frames, Coulsdon) beat George Laxton (Waterlooville Sports Bar).

    QUARTER-FINALS: Kempson beat Kneller, S Laxton beat Russell, Callum White beat Walter, Sullivan beat Chloe White.

    SEMI-FINALS: S Laxton beat Kempson, Sullivan beat Callum White.

    FINAL: Sullivan beat S Laxton.

    Tim Dunkley (World Snooker coach)

    About Cuestars

    Founded more than 25 years ago by director John Hunter, Cuestars runs grass-root snooker tournaments across the South of England.

    Competitions take place on Sundays between September and May, and cater for players of all ages.

    All Cuestars tournaments are played off scratch. There are no handicaps, except in the Under-21 Plate. Cuestars uses a round-robin format leading to a knockout.

    Competitions for 2018/19 include: South of England Championship Tour; Under-21 Gold, Silver and Bronze Tours; Weekend Junior Section Rankings and Seniors (40+) Tour.

    Website: Email John Hunter: john at