Trophies handed out at BVPA Festival of Pool

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The Blyth Valley Pool Association Super League, sponsored by Union Private Hire & Goschen Street Garage, held its third annual knockout finals nights on two tables at Blyth Sports Club.

In total there was more than £1,500 of prize money up for grabs, and thanks to sponsors there was a full complement of top quality trophies.

The first night of eight-ball action saw the three-a-side semis and finals being played.

On table one there was an all Bedlington Station semi-final which saw the second team win 5-4 in the final frame with Albert Ridley taking the decider.

A break and dish from Jason Watson from team one was a highlight of the match.

Table two also saw another game that went to the wire with the Comrades B’s first team beating Sports C’s first team with Ray Irving winning the decider.

The final looked a one-sided contest with the Comrades opening up a three-frame lead with an excellent break and dish from John Laird. But the Station fought back, winning two of the next three frames with another beak and dish from Steven Kinghorn.

But Kevin McGarry took the deciding frame to seal the victory, the trophy and £120 in prize money for Comrades. The Station took £60 and the two semi-finalists earned £30 each.

Tuesday night was the turn of the doubles with all games being played over the best of seven frames.

On table one, the Sports B pairing of Will Cowling and Shaun Smith beat Johnny Wilson Snr and Michael Johnson from Cramlington Village.

On table two there was a much cagier game with Real Comrades pairing of Alan Bell and Brian Fulbeck edging Irish A’s Gary Spooner and Gary Dennis.

The Comrades duo showed their experience winning the final 4-1 to win the trophy and £180 prize money. The runners-up took £100 whilst both semi-finalists earned £60 each.

After the first two nights, the BVPA had its third different winner in as many years for both competitions played and there would also be a new name on the singles trophy on the third night.

The singles was played from the quarter-finals with games over the best of five frames, then best of seven from the semi-finals.

Ian Carr had a bye against fellow Sports C player Chris O’Neill, who was unable to make the finals due to work commitments.

Will Cowling beat Kevin Barker, Paul Riley beat Neil Taylor and Scott Jackson beat Phil Chadwick.

In the first semi, the match went to the deciding frame with Riley edging the decider to make the final. In the other, Jackson beat Carr.

The final was won 4-0 by Riley with another two eight-ball clearances, which took his tally to six on the night. He pocketed £130 prize money as well as the third brand new trophy of the week. Jackson won £90 and the semi-finalists earned £50 each and the quarter-finalists £20.

On the final night, the Super League Knockout Cup took centre stage with four of the top six teams involved.

On table one, Bedlington Station took a comfortable 7-2 victory over an unlucky Seahorse B.

On table two Irish A had to be the first team to beat the Sports C this season to make the final. Sports took the first set 3-2, only for Irish to bounce back winning the next 3-2.

With table one’s match finished, both doubles games were played simultaneously.

Irish A broke and dished on one table and following a dry break from Sports C on the other, Irish produced another clearance to take the match 7-5 and humble the mighty Sports C team.

The final was played on a two-table format and the Station edged both sets of singles 3-2 to take an 8-4 lead with Irish needing to win both doubles to take the match to sudden death.

It was not to be for the Irish as the Station took the first doubles to seal the victory.

The Station are the third winners of the Super League Knockout Cup in as many years, which means that the BVPA have four new names on their trophies this season.

Bedlington Station also pocketed the £120 winner’s purse, whilst the Irish A won £60. Both semi-finalists earned £30 each.

The final trophy presentation saw the Sports Club C take their third league title in a row and £120 in cash. Runners-up Comrades B took £80 and third place Irish A pocketed £40.

The BVPA thanked their sponsors and Blyth Sports Club for their support and help.

Thanks also went to those who helped set up the tables, referee the matches, and to Keith O’Neill for helping create a great atmosphere at the matches.

The BVPA will return to action in late August with a new league looking likely, which will see it having its own singles, doubles, three-a-side and cup competitions, which will see an even greater atmosphere at next season’s Festival of Pool with a proposed four-table set up on finals nights.

Teams and venues wishing to be participate in the 2014-15 season need to be at the meeting for new teams with a £50 bond on Tuesday, June 17, at Blyth Sports Club.

All new teams will be placed in the BVPA’s second league.

Membership is currently open to venues within a five-mile radius of Blyth.

Current members will be happy to arrange friendlies to help bring teams up to speed with rules etc. Venues can contact the BVPA on its Facebook page. Or the website at BVPA.leaguerepublic.com