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Cory Rees Takes down Event 2
Welsh Open TourFirstly the Welsh Blackball Super tour would like to thank all the players who have entered the first 2 events of the season as well as Riley’s Cardiff for their continued support. The tour is growing by the event with 72 players entering event 2 and taking the number of registered players to 80+ with 4 events still to come this season.
Onto the action and with an early start on the cards we got under way with the pre-lim group which kicked us off at 9:30, although there were no real surprises the standard of play didn’t disappoint and there were good wins for B team internationals Sean Moore and Curtis Lee over Dan Brookes and Chris Waters respectively as well as a comprehensive victory for tour newcomer Rhodri Garland over Cardiff’s John Richards by 7-2 but the match of the round saw Dave Whitcombe overcome another newcomer in Rob Phillips in the only final frame decider of the round.

Group 1 saw top seed and event 1 winner Bryan Sullivan pick up a BYE into round 2 leaving the rest of the group fighting it out to join him. Curtis Lee was first to do that recording a quick 7-1 victory over event 1 Quarter finalist Craig Wilkin closely followed by former Wales A international Zack Wilkinson with a 7-2 victory over Port Talbots Niki Rogers, Sean Moore had a tougher battle eventually overcoming Carmarthen’s Eddie Roberts 7-6, also through were Paul Austin, Steve Griffiths, Jack Bannister and Dave Whitcombe.

Group 2 threw up some interesting match ups with the battle of the B1’s seeing Huw Salmon overcoming Ashley Maine by a 7-4 score line and Saturdays dual u18/u23 tours winner unable to complete a unique treble as he was taken out by Mark “twiggy” Bowen with a 7-2 score line there were also 3 whitewashes from Michael Howe, Ieuan Roberts and Leon Casley respectively.

Group 3 got under way giving Chris Lloyd the chance to extract revenge over the impressive 12 year old Dylan Emery but he was unable to convert it and saw Dylan snatch another 7-6 victory meanwhile proud father Mark made easier work of David jones 7-4. The game of the round though saw Sam Figgures overcome home favourite Shane virgin 7-4, also through were Kristian Phillips, Dave stratford and seeds Phil Hoskins, Luke Sanges, and craig Williams.
Group 4 gave us the Port Talbot derby of Jason Thomas and Justin Sollis and it was Jason running out the 7-2 winner, former pro Keshu O’Dedra made a comeback to the tour winning 7-2 against newports Craig Brown and there were also easy victories for Craig Marsh 7-1 Wayne Phillips 7-3 over Liam Griffiths and Chris Holcombe respectively, Cory Rees was tested a little but eventually proved too much for Luke Vokes as was Paul Bushnell against Ross Jeffries, both eventually coming out 7-4 winners.
Onto the Last 32 and Event 1 winner Bryan Sullivan was pushed all the way by sean Moore but held his own clearing the decider off the break, Zack Wilkinson saw off the challenge of Dave Whitcombe 7-5 and Curtis lee continued his run winning by 7-2, Paul Austin managed to sneak past Steve Griffiths 7-5 but there were easier victories for Mike Howe and Leon Casley, 7-2 and 7-1 respectively. We finished the top half off with 2 great matches that saw Mark Bowen and Jonny Bushnell overcome Ieuan Roberts and Kyle Edwards by 7-4 score lines. The bottom half of the draw got underway with the ever improving Luke Sanges seeing off the challenge of Wales A international Kristian Phillips 7-4 meanwhile Dylan Emery continued to impress and show his class brushing aside B team international Sam Figgures 7-3 making the most of every opportunity at the table but his dads day was ended 7-5 by Caerphilly’s Craig Williams, Phil Hoskins won the all Cardiff battle defeating Dave Stratford 7-5 while Keshu O’Dedra produced the comeback of the day beating Paul Bushnell 7-6 from 6-1 behind, Jason Thomas made the most of his chances defeating Nathan Stokes 7-2 and in the tie of the round Cory Rees produced a solid performance to dispatch of Craig Marsh 7-2
Last 16 started with Bryan Sullivan winning the all Newport Clash Vs Zack Wilkinson 7-4, Curtis Lee made light work of Paul Austin running out a 7-2 winner, Scorelines suggested Michael Howe Vs Leon casley could be the match of the top half and they didn’t disappoint but it was Mike Howe who emerged 7-5, Mark Bowen continued to plough through the tough draw that was handed to him seeing off Jonny Bushnell 7-4. The bottom half kicked off with Luke Sanges taming the challenge of young Dylan Emery who was having another excellent event but Luke proved too much winning 7-2, Caerphilly’s challenge in event 2 was ended by Cardiff as Phil Hoskins and Keshu O’Dedra dispatched of Craig Williams and Richie Olive 7-2 & 7-6 respectively and Cory Rees continued his dominance easing past Jason Thomas 7 frames to 3.
Quarter Finals and down to the business end of the day Bryan Sullivan again found himself involved in a tight game with Curtis Lee but calling on his experience Bryan again managed to produce the goods in another final frame shootout. The 2nd Quarter Final was again another tight game between Wales A internationals Mike Howe and Mark Bowen and just as Mark thought he had the game in the bag at 6-3 Mike produced a comeback to take it to another final frame shootout but losing the lag proved to be the real decider with Mark taking the decider off the break. The 3rd Quarter final saw a repeat of the quarter final at event 1 and again was tight with neither Phil Hoskins or Luke Sanges managing to pull away in a game with some good finishing but some scrappy play we saw the 3rd decider in 3 games but it was Phil this time who made the most of his chances and took the decider. The last Quarter final was another solid display from Cory Rees as he sat Keshu down for the first 4 frames before coming up dry and letting keshu in for 3 frames but on returning to the table ran out the last 3 frames to take it 7-3.
Semi Final time and first up was event 1 winner Bryan Sullivan trying to make it 2 on the spin but standing in his way was Wales A international Mark Bowen and with both players attacking at every opportunity it wasn’t going to last long, Mark though managed to pull away and keep the momentum going to close out the game 8-4 and end Bryans early dominance of the super tour season. Semi Final 2 was equally as fast and attacking with cory racing into a 2-0 lead and Phil pegging it back to 2-2 before Cory pulled away again to 5-2 Phil won 2 quick frames before potting the black and going in off to make it 5-5, a shot that might of proved the difference, Cory took it to 7-4 but after giving 1 back he closed out the game 8-5
The Final Was probably the game of the day and was quite simply a case of dish or be dished, Cory started off in the same form that had taken him to the final and raced into a 4-2 lead but mark was determined not to let him run away with it and got it back to 4-4 before taking the next 2 frames to lead 6-4 but Cory stepped it up into another gear and with a few dry breaks from Mark he sat him down and took the nest 5 frames to take the match and title of Welsh blackball super tour event 2 winner.
Thanks again to all the players who attended as well as the staff and management at Riley’s Cardiff.
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