NPO Anthony Heathcote wins Coors Newport Open title
COORS NEWPORT POOL OPEN
For immediate release
Thursday, October 23rd, 2008
ANTHONY HEATHCOTE CLAIMS
COORS NEWPORT OPEN TITLE
Ian and Bob Perry win Worthington Doubles' Open crown
NEWPORT (Shropshire): Anthony Heathcote pipped Mick Collins in a dramatic final frame to clinch the 2008 Coors Newport Pool Open title at a packed Audco Sports and Social Club on Wednesday night.
The Audco player held his nerve after going 2-1 down to the King's Head player and a long black into the top left-hand pocket sealed the dramatic victory in the fifth frame. Earlier in the evening he had beaten Ian Mason 3-1 to reach the final, while Collins had edged tournament favourite Andy Lycett, 3-2.
"I have been playing well for several weeks and knew I was in with a chance," said a delighted Heathcote. "Last year's champion Colin Pink said I would never get my hands on this trophy, but I have now and I have no intention of giving it back next year!"
In a repeat of last year's Worthington Newport Doubles Open final, Ian and Bob Perry exacted revenge over Andy Lycett and Anthony Heathcote to take a 3-1 win and the cash prize.
Six matches were scheduled for finals' night and Collins and Lycett were first up in their singles' semi-final. Collins began like a man possessed and some stunning potting gave him a 1-0 lead. Lycett stumbled on the final black in a six-ball clearance to level the match in frame two and Collins was on hand to stun the crowd and take a 2-0 lead.
Clearly rattled, Lycett struggled to make headway in frame three and Collins eyed the black for the match into the middle pocket, only to see the white fall as well and hand the frame to Lycett. Another in-off followed in frame four and Lycett made no mistake to level the match. Collins held the upper hand in frame five and justice was done in an unfortunate manner mid-way through the frame, when Lycett forced his way out of a snooker and cannoned the black into the pocket to end his Open dream.
Heathcote's passage into the final came at the expense of Ian Mason. Two useful clearances gave the champion a 2-0 lead, but he missed an opportunity to make it 3-0 and Mason was handed a lifeline frame. Heathcote made no mistake in the fourth rack to seal the match.
Greg Heathcote and Ben Longstaff edged into a 1-0 lead over Collins and Ed Keenan in the Worthington Doubles' third-place play-off, after Heathcote cleared his final five balls. But their form was short-lived: Longstaff was clearly suffering from a 'honeymoon hangover' and a formidable Collins levelled the match. Longstaff missed a golden chance to edge ahead in frame three and Collins and a spirited Keenan were on hand to seal the next two frames and the match, 3-1.
Lycett bounced back with a clinical clearance to move 1-0 ahead of Mason in the singles' third-place play-off, but the Gnosall player appeared more relaxed and it began to show in his play. He rattled off a superb clearance to level the match and 'Mase the Ace' made it 2-1 with some excellent safety play. Lycett cleared to level the match, but Mason somehow hung on in frame five and sealed the winning black to claim a superb third place at his first attempt at the Coors Newport Open.
Lycett was determined not to leave empty-handed and both he and Heathcote dug in during frame one of the Doubles' final, although Ian Perry looked his usual composed self and Bob was in fine potting form. The Perry duo clinched frame one, but Lycett and Heathcote levelled the match after a gruelling safety-dominated second frame.
Frame three was also punishing 'entertainment' for the crowd, but Heathcote missed a straightforward black to go 2-1 up and Perry was on hand to seal the frame for the visitors.
Bob Perry started well in frame four and cleared five colours in a useful first visit to the table. Cat and mouse pool followed for several minutes, as Lycett and Heathcote tried to dig themselves out of the hole, but they left Bob Perry a very difficult pot on the black into the corner to clinch the championship.
The crowd held its breath, Perry drew back the cue and the black rolled gently along the cushion and dropped into the pocket for a 3-1 win. A triumphant Ian Perry grabbed his son in his arms, the crowd let out a huge cheer and the Perry duo had taken sweet revenge for their final defeat 12 months before. "That's my boy," beamed a proud, winning father. "Brilliant Bob!"
Collins versus Heathcote had a Madison Square Garden feel to it and captured the imagination of the crowd, with several onlookers running a £5 sweep on the actual result, much to the annoyance of Heathcote.
Most of the money was on Collins to win but Heathcote started well, edging into a 1-0 lead after some tight, prolonged pool. Collins performed a great clearance in frame two to level the match and some superb potting gave him a 2-1 lead. Clearly rattled, Heathcote failed to wilt under the pressure, however, and managed to claw his way back into frame four and seal the rack to send the match into a deciding frame.
He started the better of the two in frame five and a foul by Collins gave Heathcote two shots to clear his final few balls and the black. He hadn't bargained for potting two colours with one shot though and found himself out of position on a long black into the corner for the Open title, knowing full well that a miss could cost him dearly.
Heathcote composed himself, took a deep breath and caressed the cue ball at the black. He knew it was in. "Get in there," was the ear-splitting shout as Heathcote punched the air in triumph and the Audco erupted into applause. It had been a superb final, but no-one had a bigger smile than the 2006 champion Paul Trevor, who had predicted the exact 3-2 score in the sweep!
"I would like to thank everyone at the Audco for their hospitality and to Tanya Allin and Molson Coors Brewers, a big thank you for their support for a second year," said tournament promoter Neil Perkins of NDP Publicity. "Thanks also to all the players and congratulations to Anthony, Bob and Ian on their deserved wins."
The 2007/2008 Newport & District Pool League will get underway on Wednesday, November 12th.
2008 Coors Newport Pool Open Singles
Andy Lycett lost to Mick Collins, 2-3
Anthony Heathcote beat Ian Mason, 3-1
3rd place play-off
Ian Mason beat Andy Lycett, 3-2
Anthony Heathcote beat Mick Collins, 3-2
2008 Worthington's Newport Doubles Open
3rd place play-off
Mick Collins/Ed Keenan beat Greg Heathcote/Ben Longstaff, 3-1
Anthony Heathcote/Andy Lycett lost to Ian Perry/Bob Perry, 1-3
For further information:
Neil Perkins, NDP Publicity Services, Tel: 07831 123153