Finals day proves to be a huge success

THE CURTAIN has drawn on yet another exciting season in the Arbroath and District Pool League.

Another great weekend of pool was displayed at Seaton House with the Arbroath Open played out on Saturday and the ADPL finals day on Sunday. This is the fourth year that finals day has been held at Seaton Estate and the committee extended a big thank you to the owners for continuing to support them.

The Knockout Cup semi-finals were contested by Ram’s Heid 1 v Cliffburn 1 and Portcullis 1 v Ram’s Heid 2. The Ram’s Heid 1 made sure they weren’t there just to make up the numbers and provided the Cliffburn 1 with a lot of early scares, but ultimately couldn’t capitalise on their chances and the Cliffburn 1 was the first team to book their place in the final with a 7-1 victory.

The other semi-final was a closer affair with Portcullis 1 taking an early 4-2 lead. The Ram’s Heid 2 managed to gain some momentum and after the nine singles led 5-4. The first two doubles matches were won by the Ram’s Heid 2 and with that secured their place in the final.

In the final the Ram’s Heid 2 got off to a perfect start racing into a 3-0 lead. The momentum continued with the Ram’s Heid 2 but Cliffburn 1 managed to get an elusive frame on the board and provide some confidence. It was short lived as the Ram’s Heid 2 managed to get themselves within one frame of the title leading 6-2. In the last frame of the singles the Ram’s Heid 2 were fortunate to gain two shots and made no mistake to win the Knockout Cup for the third year in succession!

The Consolation Cup started with the quarter-finals stage. First on was Cliffburn 2 versus Railway Inn 1. Railway Inn were installed as early favourites for the cup having ended a successful league campaign in fifth place behind the perceived ‘big four’.

Cliffburn 2 almost caused an upset but were edged out 7-5. The Legion 3 will wonder “what could have been” after being two players short of a full compliment of nine, going on to lose to the Portcullis 2 7-3. Legion 1 continued there defence of the title by winning a deciding frame shoot-out with Portcullis 3, winning 7-6. The Fishies derby match was close with Fishermans 2 winning through with a 7-5 win against Fishermans 1.

The two semi-finals were contrasting in scorelines with Railway Inn 1 being defeated 7-5 by Portcullis 2. The other semi-final saw Legion 1 defeat Fishermans 2 by a more convincing 7-2 margin.

Legion 1, making it all the way to the final for a second successive year, had to use all their experience throughout the team to retain the title against Portcullis 2. Portcullis 2 led by 6-5 with the last two doubles matches started – Portcullis 2 failed to seize the opportunity to win by missing the black ball in the penultimate doubles match, with Legion 1 making no mistake to make it 6-6. Both captains pitted themselves against each other in the final match, but it was the Legion 1’s Ken MacPherson, who slotted in an excellent shot down the rail to set up a neat finish and win the cup for his team. A spirited performance from Portcullis 2 but ultimately they came up short at the final hurdle.

The ADPL Doubles final was contested by Steve Webster and Ian Anderson against Martin Cherry and Steve Hamilton. This was Steve W and Ian’s first doubles final as a partnership and they faced an experienced pairing in Martin and Steve H, who last appeared in the final as a pairing exactly 20 years ago! Unfortunately for Martin and Steve it was to be the same outcome and they lost out to Steve and Ian 5-1.

Steve Webster won the ADPL Kelbie Metals Singles and Doubles last Sunday. Being victorious in both these events is a feat only managed by two players previously, a remarkable achievement and reward for his efforts over the past season.

The first two frames of the match were shared and it looked like Gary was cruising to take the lead 2-1 when he ran into the blackball, potting it out of turn, to hand Steve the initiative. Winning the frame seemed to spur Steve on and he got the ‘bit between his teeth’ and took the next three frames to clinch a 5-1 victory, making amends for last season’s reverse. On the day Steve beat Roy Middleton (3-1), Gordon Smith (3-2), Garry Mitchell (4-1) before facing Gary.

Gary had managed to negotiate his way to the final by defeating Ian Anderson (3-1), Gareth Ruxton (3-2), Stuart Smith (4-0). This was a gallant effort by both players on reaching the final of our flagship event for the second consecutive season and winning through a modern day record of 161 entries.

AJ Beedie Jewellers Arbroath Open

The 2012 AJ Beedie Jewellers Arbroath Open was played at Seaton House on Saturday and a record 123 entries were received. Entries were predominantly from Arbroath (83) with entries also coming from Dundee, Forfar, Brechin, Montrose, Carnoustie, Perth, Aberdeen and Falkirk.

There were some entertaining matches played out during the course of the day with some high profile players meeting each other in the earlier rounds.

The first semi-final saw Simon Mitchell (Aberdeen) take on Jimmy Pollock (Dundee) in what was an enthralling encounter. Both players exhibited some great pool, with Jimmy edging the match by a 4-2 scoreline. The second semi-final saw sole Arbroath survivor Dave McFarlane take on Scott Dunbar. In a similar fashion to his previous match, Scott finished frames in one visit at his peril, winning with a comfortable 4-0 victory.

With both Scott and Jimmy playing some great pool throughout the day the final was expected to be a great match. The final lived up to its billing. Both players took out very neat finishes in the first 4 frames to take the match to 2-2. Scott then took the initiative in the fifth frame to take the lead 3-2 and put himself one frame from the title. In the next frame Jimmy was left a chance by Scott and looked to be heading towards a deciding frame but inexplicably snookered himself on the black ball behind one of Scott’s remaining reds.

Jimmy mapped out a remarkable route to escape the snooker missing the blackball by the thinnest of margins, handing Scott two shots and with that Scott clinched the match 4-2, taking home the £250 top prize and keepsake trophy. Jimmy was rewarded with £150 and a small keepsake trophy for his tremendous effort.

SPA Grassroots National Finals

Ten local qualifiers now go on to represent Arbroath at the National Finals at The Red Triangle, Cumbernauld this weekend. They are Martin Cherry, George Fairweather, Steve Webster, Richard Paterson, Mark Donald, John Maud, Steve Hamilton, John Fotheringham, Jonathan Cargill and Ian Anderson. The full timings and draws for the event can be found at www.arbroath.scottishpool.com