THE quarter finals of the Danby Autos Sunderland Summer Season provided some exciting games with two of the matches going to a fifth frame decider.
Seaham Conservatives faced a difficult match against the high flying Lumley A, who had some exiting talent in their squad.
Martin Ball has been a revelation, scoring heavily consistently this season, including the highest break in his division.
He was on form in the first frame, scoring two decent breaks, including a 38, to dominate and win to give Lumley the early advantage.
Les Pinder levelled the game, before a determined Gordon Elliot took the third for Seaham.
Ball and Stoves had an easy success in the pairs for Lumley to force a deciding fifth frame.
The luck of the draw favoured Seaham, who had Gordon Elliot repeating his form in the early singles to take the frame, and put his team into the semi-finals.
Kemp faced Ian Stewart in the third frame and it proved too much, as Stewart won 78-32 after giving a 25 handicap start to put Seaham Knack into the next round.
The Victory, a surprise entrant into the quarter-finals, had home advantage as they faced Seaham Knack.
However, home advantage didn’t help much when a very close first frame, between Andy Newby and Gary Dormand, could have gone either way before Dormand won on the colours to put the Knack ahead.
This seemed to inspire his father George, who never missed a ball as he powered his way to a decisive 69-8 win in the second. Victory had it all to do, but never threatened the result.
A good game between Mill View B and Lumley B, saw mixed fortunes fluctuate between both teams, in a match that was entertaining and thrilling.
Richard Tiffin started like a house on fire for Lumley in the first, leaving Carl Davis struggling to get into the game.
Davis showed his experience to gather Tiffin in, and reduce his lead to five points, and it took a late burst on the colours by Tiffin to eventually win the frame for Lumley.
The second frame also went to Lumley, as Brian Meuse was steady and controlled to move Lumley further ahead.
Mill View needed to win the third to keep in the match, and John Spruce did not seem settled at first until a fluke put him back on track.
A strangely hesitant Thomas Gwynn did not produce his best form, and after needing snookers, conceded to put Mill View back into the game.
A tense pairs frame between Spruce and Daniel and Drinkwater and Roberts looked to be going Lumley’s way, with Drinkwater potting well and Roberts playing a sensible game.
Neither team moved into a clear lead, and it was only a good finish by Mill View, on the colours, with Daniel potting a difficult black that saw the game levelled and needing a decider.
The draw had Richard Tiffin playing Gary Simpson in the final frame, and two breaks over 22, by Tiffin, left Mill View in a difficult position.
This brought a good response from Simpson, who battled steadily to pull back his deficit, while leaving few opportunities for Tiffin to increase his total. A good finish by Simpson put his team into the next round.
A match that had great possibilities, saw the Avenue face Steels B.
A close first frame saw Bob Boyce and Adam Smith take part in a good battle, before Smith had two breaks on the colours to claim the frame for Steel.
A good start by Chris Cowie, in the second, took him into a 30 point lead, before Kevin Harrop replied with a 15 break that only failed to be bigger when a red rattled in a pocket.
A run of the green, plus some good play, saw Cowie keep control and by the brown, leave Harrop needing sneakers.
A few attempts that did not produce the required results moved Steels into a two frame lead.
Neil McLaren was in a confident mood as he started the third frame for Steels, and he seemed more settled than Graham Ablett.
An interesting situation arose with the pink over a bottom pocket, as both players were playing safety shots moving reds in the same area.
The best opportunity came to McLaren to take a brave shot into a middle pocket, enabling him to pot the pink and open up the possibilities and go 30-1 ahead.
Ablett never seemed to get into the game, and McLaren took the colours to win the tie.
H The semi-finals to be played this week are: Seaham Conservatives v Seaham Knack, at Murton Big Club, and Steels B v Mill View B, at Cheemas, next Tuesday.