Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Cooke Fails to Serve Up a Treat!

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Cooke Fails to Serve Up a Treat!

Article excerpt

WHILE most players were enjoying last week's break in the Planet Premier League fixtures, Three Lions Sports Bar's Darren Cooke travelled from Hartlepool to play an outstanding match against Gosforth Conservative's resident cueman John Astley.

Having lost the tactical opening set 63-42 to a series of small double-figure runs, Cooke could do nothing but watch when Astley moved up a gear to race further ahead.

The national under-19 champion took the following three frames 83-1, 98-0 and 94-1, with breaks of 24-55, 98 and 94, to go into the interval with a 4-0 lead.

Cooke came out fighting in the fifth and looked like pulling one back after knocking in an early 51.

However, it was Astley's small run of 23 - plus a 39 clearance - which gave him the frame 63-51.

With only two frames remaining and needing to win at least one to prevent the dreaded whitewash, Cooke started the sixth with a 23 - but ended up losing it 66-38 to Astley's late run of 37.

Another good start in the decider saw Cooke taking two reds and blacks, only to miss the third red - at which point Astley stepped in to finish off the match in style by potting the remaining balls with a magnificent 110 clearance.

While some players are still having to play catch-up, the latest league placings show Gary Wilson (played 12, 55 points) setting the pace by five points from Anthony Parsons (11-50).

David Craggs (10-49) comes next in line, followed by Michael Rhodes (10-47), David Lilley (9-43), John Astley (10-35), Tony Short (10-28), Mark Windsor (11-23), Darren Cooke (10-18) and Steve Healy (11-15).

ON Sunday the 10th in the series of 12 one-day ranking tournaments is staged at Gateshead SC (10.30).

With pounds 300 up for grabs (subject to entries), the entry fee to the handicapped best-of-five-frame main contest costs pounds 10 for adults and pounds 6 for under-18s. …

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