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Ormskirk & District Amateur Snooker League

Sad Passing

It is with extreme sadness that I am informing you all of the sad passing of our former Ormskirk League player, Fred Jones. Fred passed away peacefully last Friday. Our sincere heartfelt condolences go to his wife, Val, his son Dave and daughter Sandra and the rest of the family as well as his many friends. Fred started playing league snooker back in the early 1970s for Maghull RBL, his one and only club now known as Red Lion Social Club were he represented the club playing in the Ormskirk & District Amateur Snooker League for the C team, one of five sides housed at the club. Fred later became joint captain of that C team with very good friend, Peter Byrne, and they gained much success winning the Divisional League title and many cup triumphs too. The side were later known as the B team.

Fred's funeral will be held on Thursday 27th June 2019 at Thornton Crematorium at 2.40pm and onto Red Lion Social Club, Maghull afterwards. Fred's family have expressed that everyone are welcome to all or part of the day. May Fred rest in peace.

May I bring to the attention of all players and viewers of the Ormskirk & District Amateur Snooker League that on our website on UK League snooker there are many photographs of the Presentation Night and the Team Cup Finals and Individual & Pairs Finals recently played to draw a close to the season.

Please note that this years AGM will be held at Skelmersdale Wardens on Tuesday 23rd July 2019 at 8pm.

Summary of Season 2018-19

With all the honours in the Ormskirk & District Amateur Snooker League for season 2018- 2019 now won and lost, the curtain falls on yet another season.

Division One Champions this season were, once again, Fleetwood Hesketh SSC (formerly Southport Conservative Club & Les Dodd SC) who were sealing an astounding seventh successive title and their eighth in their relatively short twelve year Ormskirk League history as they joined us at the commencement of the 2007-08 campaign.

Olympic BC B (formerly Crosby Village SC) and only their seventh campaign in our league, pushed the winners close again and finished as Runners-up and will certainly be looking to go one step better next season.

Red Lion Social Club A (formerly Maghull RBL A) had another fine season finishing a very creditable third in the league standings were they were well in the mix for the title for the vast majority of the campaign.

Fleetwood's Gareth Hibbott won the highest break award with a fantastic break of 91 which he recorded in league week seven. Gareth is also a valuable member of the our Ormskirk League representative side who have captured the prestigious UK League Snooker Tournament title on three occasions in 2010, 2012 & 2016.

Martin Brown captured the Division One Highest Ranked Player award for an incredible record of 19 matches played, winning all 19 for a wonderful 100% record, a sensational effort from Martin after such a superb season, once again, for him.

Red Lion Social Club B (formerly Maghull RBL B) sealed the Division One Merit League crown. They comfortably captured the title by six points and finished a very solid eighth in the normal league standings, just four points off fifth spot. This was a brilliant effort from the Red Lion B boys!!

Scarisbrick NSC finished in second position in the Divisional Merit League.

St Cuthberts won the Second Division Crown by a very comfortable eight points which saw them regain their place in Division One next season at the first time of asking. This was an awesome effort from the St Cuthberts outfit!!

Skelmersdale Wardens A finished Runners-up after a fine campaign and this superb performance earned them possible promotion to the top flight next season.

Reigning Champions, Aughton Institute D finished in an excellent third place after a very solid season but will be slightly disappointed as they had a nightmare of a start to their defence but were certainly the form team during the final few weeks of the campaign and finished it very strongly.

The highest break award went to Steve McBrinn of St Cuthberts with a really nice break of 39 he compiled in League week seventeen and this was one of several awards he captured during a tremendous season for Steve on a personal level.

Steve McBrinn convincingly grabbed the Second Division Highest Ranked Player prize with a fantastic record of 26 matches played, 24 wins & 2 losses.

The first cup final of the season, the Kenney Cup, took place at Skelmersdale Wardens on Monday 25th March 2019. The Final was contested between Lathom & Burscough RBL and Rainford X SSC, both from Division One. The Rainford lads side received a twenty one point start per frame.

The first two frames were shared as Rainford's Dave Ellison comfortably overcame Lathom & Burscough's Steve Rooney with some excellent potting. Meanwhile, Mick Mullane from the Lathom & Burscough team triumphed aided by a nice break of 31 and excellent pots on brown, blue and pink to capture the frame and see his side reach parity at 1-1.

The third and four frames began and, firstly, Rainford X's Bob Everson overcame Lathom's Frank Shaw with some fine potting throughout proceedings to see his team lead again at 2-1. On the other table, Andy Bridge played a solid frame of snooker to defeat Rainford's Keith Haskayne to, once again, bring his team level at 2-2 and an exciting finale was now guaranteed.

The final two frames of the contest saw, firstly, Rainford X SSC's Martin Budd go into battle with Lathom & Burscough RBL's Peter Molyneux and it saw a very solid performance from Martin as he won the frame to put his side in front for the third time at 3-2. Meanwhile, the other clash saw both team's captains clash as, for the Rainford team, Steve Farrar come up against Alan Radford from the Lathom & Burscough outfit and it produced a fine win for Steve to see his team to a superb 4-2 victory to lift this year's Kenney Cup.

Both teams should be congratulated on a superb final!! A very big well done to the Rainford X SSC side and commiserations to the Lathom & Burscough RBL team although it was a terrific cup run for them.

The highest break of the competition was compiled by Ian A Jones of Olympic BC B with a superbly constructed break of 59.

The second cup final of the campaign, the Le Rose Cup, was played at Rainford X SSC on Tuesday 14th May 2019 and was contested by last season's Division One Merit League winners in Aughton Institute A and newly crowned First Division Champions, for the seventh successive season, in Fleetwood Hesketh SSC going for the unique 'Cup Double' only achieved on six previous occasions in the history of our league.

The first two frames of this intriguing encounter both went to the Fleetwood Hesketh side with the format of two singles matches followed by two doubles frames. Firstly, Fleetwood's Martin Brown took his frame against Aughton A's Steve O'Neill in convincing fashion in the end, although he did trail by a huge fifty three points at one stage, but aided by a nice break of 33 mid frame and a brilliant clearance of 56 to give his team an early 1-0 lead. Meanwhile, on the other table for the Fleetwood Hesketh outfit it saw Andy Booth come up against Aughton Institute A's Mike Davies and helped by a nice, timely break of 37 saw him clinch proceedings to give his side a commanding 2-0 advantage.

Frames three and four commenced in the form of pairs format. Firstly, Aughton A's captain Mike Buck & Robbie Curran come up against Fleetwood's Gareth Hibbott and Paul Cuerden and this frame went to the Aughton A pairing despite a fabulous 62 break from Gareth which would certainly have been more had he not had the misfortune of a miscue with four reds of the frame left and this saw the Aughton A team half their deficit to 2-1. Meanwhile, on the other table the Aughton A pair of Graeme Russell and Dan Mycek went into battle with Chris Hoare & Jon Holmes from Fleetwood Hesketh SSC and, a close encounter unfolded but at the business end of the frame it saw Fleetwood's Chris Hoare pot a very tricky black to grab the frame and complete a 3-1 triumph for Fleetwood Hesketh team and with it, the league and cup 'Double'. A tremendous achievement!!!

Both teams should be congratulated on a match played in excellent spirit and fiercely contested!! A very big well done to the Fleetwood Hesketh SSC boys on winning that fantastic 'Double' and commiserations to the Aughton Institute A outfit on a terrific cup run.

The highest break of the Competition was a terrific break of 62 from Gareth Hibbott of Fleetwood Hesketh SSC.

The first of the Individual and Pairs finals was the JF Wills Handicap Final which was played on Thursday 16th May 2019 at St Cuthberts. The Final was contested between Andy Edwards from Olympic BC and Mark Evans from Red Lion Social Club. The match was played over the best-of-five frames and Andy was receiving a twenty three point a frame start.

The first frame saw both players settle into proceedings rather quickly probably helped by lots of early safety at the black end of the table. Mark had the first opportunity but unfortunately miscued on 14 but a later visit of 26 saw him lead by a single point as the colours were reached. Excellent pots on yellow, green, brown and blue saw him move fifteen points ahead and Andy needing a snooker. Attempting a snooker, Andy rather unluckily potted the pink and this saw Mark move 1-0 ahead.

Frame two began with both players making early additions to their score and with just two reds of the frame remaining Andy still led by twenty four points. Andy then took the final two reds with a black and green to move thirty six points clear with just the colours left on the table. Mark laid some excellent snookers, some yielding penalty points, but a fine yellow ball pot and clearance to the blue ball saw Andy reach parity at 1-1.

The third frame saw Mark quickly erase his frame deficit with some small but important contributions and dominate the frame until the final five colours were reached were he held a twenty seven point advantage. Things could possibly have turned as Andy laid a fine snooker which saw his earn the penalty points needed to be able to now win the frame. Andy potted the green and brown balls to now trail by sixteen points with the final three balls left but a superb pot on the blue and then the pink ball saw Mark over the line to regain the lead once more at 2-1.

Frame four saw it completed dominated by Andy as after an opening red and black he led by thirty one points, Andy earned a further opportunity after a telling safety shot and this saw him contribute a further nineteen points to his growing advantage. Another small contribution from him was more than enough to grab the frame and level once again at 2-2 and take the contest into an exciting deciding frame.

The fifth and deciding frame saw Andy get the first opportunity after some fine safety from both players. He contributed fourteen points to his score and this saw him move into a very useful thirty seven point lead. However, Mark hit back immediately with a perfectly timed, highest break of the contest of 38, to now hold a single point lead. As we reached the final red of the frame it still saw the scores very close as Andy held a very slender two point advantage. Mark laid a fine snooker on that final red and it saw him gain eight penalty points together with potting the red and blue and this saw him now lead by twelve points on the final colours. The yellow and green balls were shared but Andy took brown and blue balls with excellent pots but still needed the final two balls to win the title. With things so tense, both players should be commended on some terrific safety on the pink ball but it was Mark who finally took an excellent pink to a middle pocket to win the frame for a 3-2 triumph and this saw him become this year's JF Wills Handicap Champion, the second time in his short three Ormskirk League career he has won the crown.

The highest break prize for this Competition goes to Robbie Wilson of Aughton Institute E for his terrific break of 53.

The second cup final to be played was the Pairs Handicap Final, this was played on Monday 20th May 2019 and was hosted by Skelmersdale Wardens. It was contested between Graeme Russell & Dan Mycek from Aughton Institute and Steve & Gary McBrinn of St Cuthberts and it was Steve and Gary who was in receipt of a single point start in this aggregate over two frames encounter.

The first frame commenced and all four players made early contributions and this kept the score between the players very close. In fact, with just the final red of the frame remaining, it saw Steve and Gary hold an eight point lead. After a small safety exchange, Steve took that final red with the pink ball to see them into a handy fifteen point lead on the final six colours. Graeme took an excellent yellow together with green and brown to reduce their arrears but Steve hit straight back with blue and pink. After some good safety on the black ball, Gary unfortunately went in-off it and this ended frame one with Steve & Gary holding a ten point lead.

Frame two began just like the opening frame as early on it saw all players make early contributions and at the midway point of the frame it saw Steve and Gary hold onto a sixteen point lead. This was the point when things started to move in the direction of the Aughton pairing as, firstly, Dan made a small, but vitally important, contribution together with a red and black from Graeme as well as a maximum penalty point foul from Steve and this saw Graeme & Dan move into a twelve point advantage. On his next visit, Graeme made a telling contribution of sixteen to see them move into a very useful twenty eight lead. Further contributions from Dan then Graeme saw them now hold a massive forty nine point advantage and this meant their opponents now needed snookers as only two reds remained on the table. Steve and Gary battled hard and never gave up as Steve took those final two reds, both with high valued colours, and four penalty points yielded from a well laid snooker saw them now trail by thirty two as we reached the colours. A fluked yellow together with forced pots on both green and brown, by both Steve and Gary, as they lay over the pockets, meant they trailed by twenty three points with just blue, pink and black remaining. Shortly after, Graeme potted both blue and pink to see him and his partner Dan over the line and with it they become this year's Pairs Handicap Champions.

The highest break of the Competition was an tremendous break of 67 from Fleetwood's Martin Brown.

The third final played was the Individual Handicap final and this was contested on Tuesday 21st May 2019 and was played at Lathom & Burscough RBL. It saw Upholland Social's Dave Usher come up against Steve O'Neill from Aughton Institute and Dave received a one point start in this best-of-five frame encounter.

Frame one began with the Upholland's Dave very quickly into his stride and a fine break of 36 settled him right down and very quickly he moved forty one points clear with just four reds of the opening frame remaining. Another contribution from Dave saw him hold a commanding fifty four point advantage and very shortly after that Steve conceded and Dave took an early 1-0 lead.

The second frame saw both some excellent safety from both players and this became quite a pre-longed encounter. Dave forced the first opportunity and made a small contribution but Steve hit back with a small break of his own. With the frame scores very close, Dave made a nice break of twenty three to give himself a nice advantage in the frame. With just one red left, Steve potted it but missed a tricky pink ball and Dave then took yellow and green balls to see his opponent needing snookers. A further foul from Steve saw him concede the frame and Dave doubled his advantage to 2-0 and into a very healthy position in the match.

Frame three became rather scrappy early on and a number of the balls lay in very awkward positions. Steve managed to create an opening and engineered a break of 19 to hold a useful advantage. He still held that lead as the colours were reached and after potting the yellow ball he led by twenty one points so just one of the five remaining would probably be enough to clinch the frame. Dave fought back and potted green and a fine brown and together with an excellent safety shot on the blue put Steve under intense pressure. Dave made further pots on the blue and pink balls to take the frame to a final black ball finish and saw Dave on the brink of lifting the crown. To his horror, Dave went in-off that black ball and this saw Steve grab a lifeline and half his deficit to 2-1.

The fourth frame began very much like frame two with lots of good safety by both players but Dave contributed a small effort but the first real opportunity fell to Dave again and he certainly took it with both hands with an excellently constructed break of 35 to put himself in an incredibly strong position as he led the frame by forty seven points with just fifty one remaining on the table. Shortly after Dave took a further two reds, both with high valued colours, and this saw Steve warmly congratulate his opponent on his 3-1 victory and becoming this year's Individual Handicap Champion.

The highest break of the Competition was a superb break of 52 from Olympic's
Ian A Jones.

The Individual Championship Final, our show piece event, was played on Tuesday 28th May 2019 at league headquarters, Aughton Institute, and was between Gareth Hibbott from Fleetwood Hesketh Sports & Social Club and Paul Williams of Olympic Bowling Club. The evening also saw the presentation of our trophies and after the match a hot pot and chicken curry supper. The evening was made so much more special as we had our league patron, John Parrott, with us yet again to help with our presentation of trophies and awards together with our wonderful MC from our snooker charity nights, Dave 'the mighty' Quinn and the usual superb music entertainment from 'Tiny' Trevor Ford who all gave their time to help make the night a great occasion.

The first frame of this best-of-seven match saw both players straight into the contest but it was Paul who got the first chance in this opener. He reached 25 but, very unfortunately, going into the pack of reds, split them lovely but finished on nothing and had to play safe. From that safety shot of Paul's, Gareth potted a superb long red to launch a counter-attack but on 23 missed a tricky blue. After some excellent safety from both players Gareth created another opening and reached 31 before he under-cut an awkward green to its own pocket. Paul hit back to take the final two reds of the opening frame, both with high valued colours, as well as the yellow to trail by just thirteen points. After an unfortunate foul from Paul it gave Gareth a chance and he took green and brown to lead by twenty four points with just eighteen points remaining on the table. Shortly after Gareth potted blue and pink to take the opening frame and lead 1-0.

Frame two saw both players make early contributions and then Paul potted a fine red ball but didn't finish on a colour so laid a tricky snooker. From the resulting escape effort it saw Gareth called for eight misses and from the final attempt Paul constructed a nice break of 32 to easily seal the frame and reach parity at 1-1.

The third frame saw Gareth produce some tremendous snooker and carved out an early opportunity for himself after an excellent safety shot. He certainly didn't disappoint his supporters as he magnificently compiled a sensational break of 103. It was certainly looking like Gareth was going to beat the highest ever break made in the entire history of our league but very unfortunately he missed the very tricky final red down the side cushion to sadly bring an end to a wonderful break. This saw him regain the lead again at 2-1.

Frame four was undoubtedly a massive frame and it saw Gareth produced another fabulous break of 64 and next visit he contributed 15 to clinch the frame but to Paul's huge credit he cleared by with a terrific break of 47 as he had had no table time for a frame and a half. This frame put Gareth on the brink of retaining the crown as he moved 3-1 ahead.

Frame five saw Paul, to his credit, show no signs of giving up as he made an early contribution to open up an early frame lead and a further break of 24 saw him to a fifty point advantage with just two reds remaining. Gareth fought back taking the final two reds with black balls and laid two fine snookers which both yielded penalty points and he was now able to pinch the frame with the colours left on the table. Paul then laid a telling snooker of his own as it earned him the maximum seven penalty points and shortly after he potted green, brown and blue to reduce his arrears to just 3-2.

The sixth frame saw Gareth create an early frame opening which enabled him to compile a very useful break of 36 and on his next visit engineered a further break of 23. Shortly after, Paul shook hands with Gareth and saw him capture the frame he needed for a 4-2 triumph. Amazingly, this is the sixth time Gareth has become Individual Champion after previous wins in 2007-08, 2009-10, 2013-14, 2015-16 & 2017-18.

The highest break recorded for this Competition was a sensational break of 112 compiled by Martin Brown of Fleetwood Hesketh SSC.

Finally, the committee and myself would like to congratulate all our winners this season and the achievements that were reached, the curtain falls on another successful campaign in the Ormskirk & District Amateur Snooker League and we wish everyone participating in the 2019-2020 season every success!!!