English Amateur Finals – Deja Vu at Darley Dale

Saturday/Sunday 23rd/24th March 2019, Whitworth Institute

Unbeaten English amateur champion for the previous 5 years and six times winner Rob Hall won another title with a repeat showing of last years final against Darren Kell to staged on Sunday 24th March. In a fascinating and tight semi-final game against Matt Sutton a hard fought match was in doubt up until the last couple of minutes, Hall edging it by around 40 points. Kell came through a north-east semi-final derby against Craig Fitzpatrick, Fitzpatrick having a 97 break that was immediately responded to by Kell with a faultless 201 break being the turning point. Semi-Final scores:
Session 1: Rob Hall (58,99) [273+57unf] v [353] Matt Sutton (161)
Session 2: Rob Hall (160,117,112) [494] v [368] Matt Sutton (83,115)
Total: Rob Hall 767 v 721 Matt Sutton
Session 1: Craig Fitzpatrick (97,72) [213+38unf] v [414] Darren Kell (201,71,54)
Session 2: Craig Fitzpatrick (56,76,57) [337] v [519] Darren Kell (78,62,71,65)
Total: Craig Fitzpatrick 570 v 953 Darren Kell

In the final, having survived a tight semi-final things again were looking tricky for Hall with Kell taking a lead at half way. As true champions do, Hall produced when it mattered, a dominant second session performance ensuring he comfortably retained the trophy. Final Scores:
Session 1: Hall (79,57,72) [332] v [423] Kell (97,54,128)
Session 2: Hall (201,147,158,84) [842] v [243] Kell (88,92)
Total: Hall 1174 v 666 Kell

Toot and Ploot

A word of thanks to tournament director Clive Scott, referees John Squires, Bob Slee, Martin O’Reilly and Chris Ellis who had the double honour of refereeing the final and the Masters final earlier in the season.