Bradford sides looking good for league titles

Bradford cue army

Right on Cue

It was a good weekend for Bradford’s two snooker sides in the Yorkshire Inter-District League.

The No 2 team climbed closer to the summit of Division Two with a 4-2 victory over second-placed Huddersfield.

Bradford champion Gareth Green gave the visitors the perfect start, making breaks of 49 and 53 to take both frames against Martyn Beck.

Boover Singh comfortably stretched the lead to 3-0 before opponent Kevin Baxter made a 47 break to pull a frame back.

Michael Whaley then made a 49 against Bradford captain Hanif Rafiq, who fought back well before eventually losing on pink and black.

The final frame followed a similar pattern as Whaley got 40 points away. But Rafiq responded to stretch his own lead with the colours to 20 – and although it went down to pink and black again, Rafiq this time claimed them to clinch the overall win.

The victory leaves Bradford just one point behind Huddersfield and two adrift of leaders Wakefield No 2 but with a game in hand on both rivals.

Meanwhile, defending Division One champions Bradford No 1 remain five points clear at the top after a 3-3 draw at Harrogate as all other results ended the same way.

Wayne Cooper won both frames easily against Stuart Jauncey (81-8 and 97-7), the highlight being a 54 break in the second.

Bradford no1 had a superb following ( Click Picture for full view ) to harrogate conservative club a total of thirteen people turned up from Bradford to show their support for the defending champions.

Captain Kevin Firth was made to work hard by home captain Andy Blamire but a 27 clearance pinched the frame 60-55 for a 3-0 lead.

Blamire made excellent breaks of 37 and 31 for an 85-9 win in the next and Harrogate drew level as Gyles Behbood took both frames off Mark Slater.

A 71 break earned a 79-8 success in their opener and although Slater hit a 46 in the last after Behbood had made a 47, the frame went Harrogate’s way 77-64.

Bradford No 1 next host second-placed Leeds on Sunday, March 23, while the No 2 side are at home to Wakefield No 1 on the same night.

* The draw for the Bradford Snooker Championships has thrown up some interesting ties, including 2004 champion Howard Mawson (Eccleshill Victoria Cons) against 2008 finalist Mark Slater (Clayton Libs).

Last season’s runner-up John Wellham (Allerton Cons), who knocked out defending champion Gareth Green in the previous round, faces Wayne Downey (Undercliffe Cricket Club).

Kevin Firth (Undercliffe Cricket Club), a 2012 finalist, takes on Lewis Walsh (Eccleshill Victoria Cons) and Anthony Green (Harold Club), in his first Bradford Championships, faces Chris Tolson (Cue Gardens).

* The second round of the Hopkinson Plate starts next Thursday (March 20), with second legs taking place seven days later. Details have been sent out to all clubs involved

* A reminder that the Bradford Billiards Championships are to be held on Saturday, March 22 at Cue Gardens. For more information contact Stephen Kershaw (07815-014198).

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