HOLDER HILL LEAVES BUT HARRISON REMAINS IN FASCINATING MEN’S SINGLES
Mick Hill’s reign as WEPF World 8-Ball Pool champion is over and it was almost curtains for former winner Phil Harrison on a dramatic day of action at Blackpool’s Imperial Hotel.
Hill, bidding for a record fourth men’s singles title, had to come from behind to beat qualifier Steve Petty 8-6 in the last 16.
But his luck ran out in the quarter-finals as Karl Sutton, looking to add the world crown to this year’s European title, kept his cool to win 9-4.
Harrison, champion in 2009, looked to be heading in the same direction against Republic of Ireland’s last survivor, Stephen Dempsey.
The 2007 European title winner, a former world seed, came from 2-0 down to reel off six straight frames to lead 6-2. Ely window cleaner Harrison reduced his arrears to 6-4 but promptly fell 7-4 down.
Dempsey’s bid for a semi-final berth looked doomed when Harrison finally found his form to take the lead at 8-7. However, there were still a couple more twists as Dempsey sent the match to a deciding frame.
The underdog then had the rollercoaster in his grasp but twitched on the final black to win 9-8. Harrison came back to the table, cleared two of his three remaining yellows with a single shot, rolled in his last yellow along the bottom rail and then sank the black for a great escape.
The bottom half of the quarters featured four players competing at that stage for the first time. And after two tense matches Richard King from Kidderminster and Norwich’s Shaun Chipperfiield progressed to the television stages.
Former snooker professional King knocked out fourth seed Michael Hope 8-4 in the last 32 and repeated the score line against Eddie Barker in the last 16.
Australian Michael Scerri, National champion in 2014 and 2015, gave King a testing match before the Englishman prevailed 9-7.
Quick fire Chipperfield dropped only two frames in his last 32 and last 16 matches before knocking out Andrew Stentiford of the Channel Islands 8-6.
The best of 19 frames semis will be played on June 28 at 1.30pm and 3.30pm respectively.
|Trevor Baxter - Press Officer|