With a position in the top three in their sights Team Rileys play host to fourth-placed Sheps. The form-book and strength within the home side’s ranks suggests a Rileys win. But Bob Grant’s side produced their weakest display of last season’s Winter League campaign against Sheps and will be wary of a repeat performance…..
…. in an unfortunate by-product of Ollies’ decision to rain on Team Rileys’ parade the division’s front-runners Jubilee will also be chalking up at the A6 venue on the same evening. Just like watching Germany against Argentina it’s difficult to support one team over the other.
Moving on from that point which footy players would the cueists from either side equate to? Is the Roybot Stocky Pool League’s very own Lionel Messi? Former German international Stefan Kuntz is the obvious choice for he who doesn’t like to be named. Paul White could be Jamaal Fudge (though we’re cheating here as Mr Fudge is an American footy player). Further suggestions on a postcard….
Team Rileys 1 Sheps 0
Big Nick’s low win percentage is given a major boost when Team Rileys win the opening rack for the second week in succession. James Ellison was first in before Nick Powell embarked on a tough finish which ended by jawing a mid-length ball at pace which stuck in the pocket. Fat Eddie could only move his bad ball away from the bag before Big Nick took out a composed finish in a typically nervy opener.
Team Rileys 2 Sheps 0
Kyle Wilson maintains the momentum by taking out Ant Bunting in the second. The Nominator is in control following the early exchanges and a decent clearance – featuring an excellent poitional shot on the black – doubles Rileys’ advantage.
Team Rileys 3 Sheps 0
Sheps woes continue when the irrepressible Dave Walker takes to the table. An early dish attempt breaks down following an unfortunate cannon. Tony White has a sniff but the Sheps man, who appears beat even before taking a shot, turns down a pot opportunity into the middle in favour of a wild miss into the top bag. Walker seizes control with a couple of fudges before a fine clearance for the win.
Team Rileys 3 Sheps 1
Hopes of a rout rescind in the next with a DOB from last season’s top stats man Dave Headdock. An excellent break off shot leaves all the balls in the open. Dom Mills’s hopes of getting to the table rise with a couple of less than perfect positional shots. But Headdock recovers in fine style to complete a top clearance.
Team Rileys 3 Sheps 2
The match is put back in the balance when an off-colour Andy Jones is sunk in the next by Captain Crossy. A typical Jones dry break is made worse when the white is sent bouncing straight into the middle bag. A counter-dish is spoilt when position on the last ball is lost, however Crossy manages to cover the corner bag close to the black. The attempted snooker goes wrong for Mr Jones as again the white finds its way into a pocket, this time in baulk, and the frame is lost.
Team Rileys 4 Sheps 2
Captain Fudge does the business to give his side a half time lead. Bob Grant is well in control before snookering himself to turn the rack on its head. But the Big Fudge is given a reprieve and comes out of the safety exchange with flying colours to pot a simple black into the middle. The muted celebration followed by moob display wont be a candidate for the video highlights section.
*Over on the other side of Rileys there’s a sycophantic display similar to a bukkake party with The Moan centre of attention as Jubilee take Ollies apart. The Roybot’s the only loser for Jubilee so far while the usual suspects continue to create bad feeling with their off-table antics.
Team Rileys 4 Sheps 3
A pivotal seventh frame saw The Terminator Jason King lose to the Sheps star man Dave Headdock. The frame couldn’t have started much worse for the King, with his new and improved “awesome break” resulting in the white travelling 15 foot off the table and three balls coming out of the pack. The cage fighter Headdock surprisingly refused the oppurtunity to re-rack them with two visits – maybe too many blows to the head? Header broke down after potting a few balls with the double whammy of going in-off. King looked big favourite with only one bad ball by the black, however an early missed pot made the finish challenging although it was still attempted. Headdock was given a sniff after an exchange of shots and took off an impressive finish, going round the table off his last red close to the corner bag to land perfectly on the black in the same pocket. Overall it can be said that Jason King had his chances but in all honesty was a little bit w@nk – and ahead of the Jubilee weekend as well.
Team Rileys 4 Sheps 4
After an Ant Bunting dry break, Matt Norbury attempts the clearance, but breaks down with two reds left. A Mr Penis snooker, and subsequent failure to escape from Norbs, gives Ant the chance to take out a decent clearance without needing his two. Sheps are back on level terms as Rileys continue to struggle to hit the heights reached in the early stages of the match.
Team Rileys 5 Sheps 4
Dave Walker stops the rot with his third dish in as many weeks. The break is class. So is the clearance. The celebration…. not so sure. Here’s the VT:
*England international Paul White is distraught following defeat against The Moan in the other match. A heavy defeat for Ollies is almost complete leaving last season’s runners-up knowing they will almost certainly have to beat Replay in two weeks to maintain any sort of championship hopes. For Ian Davidson it’s a CATastrophe (sorry).
Team Rileys 6 Sheps 4
Suspicions that Rileys’ most recent signing Nick Powell is in fact a bit rubbish evaporate completely with his second win of the night. James Ellison is again the victim. The mid-distance red with cueing off the cushion is sunk with ease as part of a composed clearance and Rileys stand on the brink of victory.
Team Rileys 6 Sheps 5
Andy Jones takes the honours for the best single ball pot of the night, however he is unfortunate with his subsequent position on his last red. The pot is dead straight where any other potting angle would mean a guaranteed frame win for TR. A tricky black is then missed to put Dave Crossland back in. Crossy makes The Professor and Rileys pay and suddenly Sheps have a chance of stealing the draw.
Team Rileys 7 Sheps 5
Bob Grant fudges Rileys over the line by taking the last. In an echo of the first game Captain Fudge dominates early on. A poor shot lets Steve Travers back in and the Sheps anchor has a more than decent chance at the black. However, as in the previous game the pot goes begging but the key ball goes safe. A fudge battle is Grant’s forte and he emerges on top (ooh matron) to seal the win for Rileys which takes them up to third in the table.