At this early stage of the Tennents Coleraine Pool League, it is still the Bullseye Old Boys who are proving the form team as they made it four wins from four with a battling performance to see off the young Seagull’s Potters 4-2.
Despite Daniel McAuley winning the first singles match for the Seagulls, it was captain Jeff Butcher along with Eddie Mullan and Keith Hunter who made the difference, all picking up good victories in their singles matches.
Despite an excellent Scotch doubles win for young Adam Freeburn and Bradley Boreland, the more experienced pairing of McAuley and Ivan Boreland could not match the feat in the last game to force the playoff, Hunter teaming with Karl Doherty to secure the win.
Alongside the Old Boys sit Potters All Stars who travelled to Mary Pats and recorded a good 4-2 win.
Following the recent rule change, Mary Pats have been able to bring Martin McNeill back into the fold but he came up against John McIlreavy who proved too strong including an excellent eight ball finish in the second.
John’s son Lee followed up with a solid display in his singles but could not reproduced this in the doubles alongside Stephen Spence as McNeill teamed with Simon Riley for the win.
Davy Rosborough continued his recent fine form with an impressive win against under 23 international Matthew Steen, levelling the match in the performance.
However, it was the experienced Clem Howard who made the difference in this game as he beat Andy Hutchinson in the singles before combining well with Conor Kneeland to take the last doubles and the two points.
The match of the week was at the Railway Arms who played host to Stephen Warwick’s Bull’s Eye side.
This match opened with two solid performances, first of all Raymond Baxter saw off Ady Toner but was matched by Lee Hull who defeated Scott McClelland to level.
The first Scotch doubles encounter saw Baxter and McClelland combine to see off Stephen Warwick and Paul Baird but the Bullseye pairing had every chance. However, Baird made no mistakes in his singles match nor did Steven McMullan, both running out comfortable 2-0 winners to put the Bullseye 3-2 in front.
Hull and McMullan looked like they would seal the points for the visitors as they took the first frame of the final Scotch doubles.
However, Barry McLaughlin and Arthur McMullan rallied fantastically well with two excellent finishes to force the play off.
Unsurprisingly, it was Baxter and Hull who were selected for their respective sides to battle it out for the two points. Hull took the first after some loose play from his opponent, and should have took the second but was unfortunate not to develop the black with his last shot. Baxter was able to clear and force the decider, which turned into a very scrappy encounter but it was the Railway man who pulled through.
With the one league format this year, there was always the chance there would be some mismatches and this proved to be the case as Mary Craigs A met the Sperrin.
The first two singles matches highlighted the difference with Billy Moore and Raymond Stockman taking advantage of some slack play by Barry Galbraith and debutant Johnny Downs respectively.
A doubles win for Moore alongside Paul O’ Connor and a singles win for Chris Wade sealed a win in a match which lasted little over an hour in total. This was a steep learning curve for the newcomers from Mary Craigs.
Potters B were the other victors on the night. Ady Boreland’s men proving too good for the Roost, where Gavin McClements was once again the notable performer for the Roost, but impressive displays from James Nesbitt and skipper Boreland himself helped the home side to a 5-1 win.
Railway Arms 4 – 3 Bull’s Eye
Potters B 5 – 1 Roost
Seagull Potters 2 – 4 Bulls Eye Old Boys
Mary Pats 2 – 4 Potters Allstars
Sperrin 4 – 0 Mary Craigs A
Mary Craigs B vs Social Club (postponed)
Potters A vs Village Tavern (no result)
Bulls Eye vs Potters B Village Tavern vs Railway Arms Mary Craigs A vs Potters A Bulls Eye OB vs Sperrin (match postponed due to international duty) Potters All Stars vs Seagull Ptrs Social Club vs Mary Pats Roost vs Mary Craigs B