Seaham surge into the knockout final

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SEAHAM Conservatives produced a magnificent performance to book their place in the Westoe Removals Sunderland Summer League Knockout final after defeating Pennywell Comrades A 3-1.

The semi-final, played at Mill View Social, saw Robert Cougle – who had a handicap start of 25 – up against Mark Anderson.

A good start by Cougle saw some outstanding potting as he increased his lead.

The deficit was reduced as Anderson compiled a 20 break. Unfortunately, he saw Cougle make an immediate response to move away again.

Anderson was always chasing shadows, but when it came to the colours, he was still in with a chance until Cougle potted some excellent balls to eventually win the frame 77-41.

Les Pinder was next up for Seaham and he continued Seaham’s good fortune with a steady start against Pennywell’s Joe Turner.

Pinder showed some great composure with Turner not producing his normal form.

It was not a surprise that Pinder held onto his lead and a good finish on the colours saw him win 51-32 and increase Seaham’s lead to 2-0.

A most entertaining third frame ensued between Gordon Elliot, of Seaham, and Steve O’Wellen with the result only being found on the last black ball.

O’Wellen faced a determined Elliot, but it was O’Wellen who started brightest and he built up a small advantage, before Elliot showed his capabilities with a 20-break.

This seemed to settle Elliot, and helped by an outrageous fluke when a missed black into a bottom pocket went off two cushions into a top pocket, he seemed a likely winner.

Not to be outdone, O’Wellen responded with a small break and an equally fortunate snooker on the pink that left Elliot in tight situation.

It was nip and tuck until the last two colours with O’Wellen only needing the pink.

A good shot by Elliot made him favourite to win the frame, until an attempt on the black failed and the white went in-off leaving O’Wellen the winner.

It was still all to play for as Pennywell fought back into the game in the pairs, with Cowell and Monaghan playing for Seaham and Anderson and Turner for Pennywell.

The opening shots went to an inspired Cowell, who belied his age and showed his match-play experience by steadily picking up the points and built a decent lead.

Pennywell could not get going and Monaghan capitalised on an opening to increase the advantage.

It was fitting that Cowell sealed the result to take Seaham into the final.

H Thanks to Hylton Club, a rearranged match between Green Baize and Mill View B was played with the match going to the deciding fifth frame.

Peter Dambrosie, who is a determined battler, gave Sid Bate a 20 handicap start in the first frame and started badly with a foul.

Bate increased the lead, but then had to contend with a fight back as Dambrosie recovered to be only four points behind.

Going into the colours, it was Bate who had the lead and that left Dambrosie needing a snooker, but that did not come and Mill View secured the first frame.

Dean Wilson, of Green Baize, showed his class in the second when clearing his handicap deficit and took control.

Despite his attempts to recover, his opponent was unable to challenge and Wilson made it all square.

John Spruce faced Jeff Burn in the third and the frame saw the lead alternate with neither player dominating before Spruce took the pink and black to put Mill View back in front.

Spruce and Brown had the task of winning the pairs to take Mill View into the final against Wilson and Burn.

It was Mill View who seemed to have the edge with Spruce being left disappointed after missing a simple red.

A chance fell to Mill View to secure the frame, but a missed pink over the pocket handed the advantage to the Baize, who grabbed the opening to level.

The draw had Peter Dambrosie playing the decider for the Baize and he played a strong game and took his team to the final.

The final will be played week commencing August 27, with a neutral venue to be confirmed.

H Would teams who have not returned their player registration forms, please forward them to Sid Bate as soon as possible.