The second tournament of the Scratch Billiards series was played at the Ivy Rooms Snooker Club in Carlow on Sunday, 16th of October 2011. Aidan Murray (Wicklow), having made a bad start to the season when he bowed out at quarter finals stage last month to billiards youngest (and most promising) player, Wayne Doyle (Dun Laoghaire), more than made up for it by taking the season’s second scratch tournament title.
The semi finalists in the top half of the draw were Eugene Hughes (Kilkenny) and Aidan Murray (Wicklow), each having had good wins against Victor O’Gorman (Dun Laoghaire) and Aonghus McAnally (Portmarnock) respectively. What promised to be an exciting and close semi final, between ex-professional Eugene and last season’s No 1 ranked player, Aidan, turned out to be quite the opposite. Eugene struggled to cope with a strange cue, his own being in for repair, while Aidan hit his best form of the day, including a magnificent break of 102, the day’s highest, in the process.
By contrast with the top half of the draw, the bottom half provided some very close matches. Wayne Doyle (Dun Laoghaire), after a good win in his pre quarter match against Lloyd Myers (Cork), in a close quarter final game where the players matched each other score for score, Joe Doheny (Borris-in-Ossory), found himself just 30 points behind when time was called. Wayne now met Larry Drennan in the semi final, who had claimed his semi final place with a good win against Brendan Devlin (Celbridge). In the closest match of the day, Larry, 5 points behind and less than a minute left on the clock, came to the table with no shot on but managed a difficult pot white and laid a double baulk. Wayne avoided the miss from double baulk leaving Larry in with 25 seconds to go. An in-off red left the scores level with the clock ticking ever closer to zero. Spotting up for a cannon, Larry played his next stroke an instant before time, scoring a winning cannon in the process.
In the Final, Larry made a flying start with an opening break of 58. Aidan responded in his next visit with a 50. With both players seeing the ball well and scoring effectively with each visit, it was anyone’s game for the first hour’s play. With the scores more or less level at 200 each, Aidan gradually drew ahead, leaving Larry in a catch-up situation. Having amassed a lead of about 50 points, Aidan, although looking favourite at this point, was always under threat of a counter attack. However, a couple of no-score visits by Larry late in the game, took the pressure off Aidan, who maintained his lead until time was called.
The next Scratch Billiards round of the season takes place at the Ivy Rooms, Carlow on Sunday, 13th November 2011. The format will be open draw best of three 150Up, untimed. Entries will be accepted before 10.30am on the morning of the event.
We would like to thank Jim Leacy for the excellent facilities at The Ivy Rooms and Marian and staff for their help on the day.
Results(all matches 400 up, 90 minute time limit):
Lloyd Myers 265 – 366 Wayne Doyle
Eugene Hughes 400 – 213 Victor O’Gorman
Aidan Murray 400 – 126 Aonghus McAnally
Larry Drennan 400 – 154 Brendan Devlin
Joe Doheny 303 – 343 Wayne Doyle