Railway’s defeat sets up a three-way tie for top spot

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GROUP three in the Westoe Removals Sunderland Snooker League has become very interesting due to leaders Railway losing 3-1 to Cheemas and creating a group of three teams on nine points.

Details in this group are like gold dust – difficult to obtain – due to teams not forwarding the cards on time.

Biddick A beat Mill View A 3-1 with Mick Riley playing some tremendous snookers in the pairs frames.

Cheemas A surprised the Railway in winning 3-1 a result that belied their position near the bottom of the table. Michael Austin won the first with Gary Turner levelling in the second.

Lee Campion took the third and joined Gurj Cheema in winning the pairs. Woodside A is still among the top group despite losing 3-1 to the Knack.

Mill View V and Seaham Cons both had 3-1 results to hold their positions at the top of group four.

Seaham Cons had a good start in winning the three singles against Pennywell Comrades C but failed to win the pairs. Les Pinder won 5-1 in the first. Gordon Elliott won 65-29 in the second and Ian Hughes won 65-29 in the third. Kevin McDermott had a 30 break in winning the pairs with Alan Brown to claim the consolation for Pennywell.

Biddick did not bring their normal form with them when visiting Mill View B and were soon two down as Carl Davis and John Spruce capitalised in the first matches.

A closer game was seen on the third as Peter Straughan took the black in beating Sid Bate.

John Spruce and Norman Brown controlled the pairs for Mill View, with the Biddick players out of touch for most of the fame.

Victory lost the first two frames against Cheemas B with Anth Longstaff and Rab Cheema both scoring over 60 points in their frames. Ray James pulled one back in the third and a recovery was completed as James and Butler took the pairs 62-30 to force a 2-2 draw.

Green Baize still head group one with none of the challengers gaining an advantage as all the matches finished in 2-2 draws.

The matches between the Avenue and Green Baize have a bit of history, and are usually fought with an intensity. Gary Moore faced Dean Wilson in the first with both players on a scratch mark ensuring a good encounter.

It was very close most of the way with little advantage to either player before Wilson edged ahead to win 58-46. Mark Fox has steadily improved his game and had a cagey opponent in Peter Dambrosie as his adversary but he proved his mettle to win 60-25 and level.

Two established players in Bob Fisher and Jeff Burn were given the task of taking their team into the lead in the third and it was Green Baize who went 2-1 ahead.

Retribution came in the pairs as Moore and Fox won comfortably to square the match.

Pennywell Comrades B usually perform well at home, and faced a strong team from Steels and started badly as M Robertson had a very capable opponent in Adam Smith who took the first frame 75-55 clearing a 20 handicap in the process. Dean Taylor and Chris Cowie were very well matched and a good frame was seen before Cowie took Steels into a 2-0 advantage.

Stu Coffey needed to play well to start a recovery and he responded with style to reduce the lead. The pairs frame would be decisive and Stu Taylor and Steve Joyce played their part by beating McLaren and Smith to force a draw.

Steels A is still the top team in group two and had a tough game against Pennywell A. Joe Turner took the first in impressive style before Tom Ayre was just as good in levelling in the second.

Stephen O’Wellen had a fight before winning the third 63-46 to regain the lead but was not successful in the pairs as Sayers and Ayre had a comfortable 63-29 win for Steels to square the match.

Possibly the main match of the group was the game between Washington Snooker and Hylton two very capable teams who will challenge Steels all the way to the knock-out stage.

A Bell double for Washington with Mark and Gary being successful in the two opening frames was challenged as Kevin Harrop pulled one back for Hylton in the third.

He then twinned with Bob Boyce in winning the pairs 57-45 to recover and force a draw.

Woodside B seemed in difficulties in the game against the Duck who sportingly agreed to a late start to their match. Wayne Foreman took the first 76-31 before a taut frame in the second saw Tom Stavers winning 55-46.

Danny Elliott had a 31 break in winning the fourth before Dowell/Kemp took the pairs to claim a point with Woodside winning 3-1.

Results, Group 1: Avenue 2 Green Baize 2, Pennywell B 2 Steels B 2, Murton Vic 2 Farringdon 2.

Group 2: Washington 2 Hylton 2, Steels A Pennywell A 2, Woodside B 3 Duck 1.

Group 3: Biddick A 3 Mill View A 1, Cheema A 3 Railway 1, Woodside A 1 Seaham Knack 3.

Group 4: Seaham Cons 3 Pennywell C 1, Victory 2 Cheema B 2, Mill View B 3 Biddick B 1.