Cue stars set for quarters

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The Sovereign Snooker Services Clitheroe small tables league has reached the quarter final stages.

In the last 16 the Clitheroe Royal British Legion young hotshot Liam Sutcliffe beat the Social Club’s Roger Hope, but Roger can take solace from still holding the competition’s highest break so far.

Liam’s club mate Mark Hitchen then continued his recent good form and disposed of the Social’s Dave Moore 3-0.

The Social’s star player Eric Barnes then played very well in knocking out the Legion veteran in Gary James, who had no answer to Eric’s form and high scoring.

Stephen Ollie Almond from the Legion then upset the Socials in form Rob Grant, beating him 3-1, and the Billington man must be considered a serious threat in the last 8.

The Legion’s top player Dean Walmsley then saw off the Social’s Simon Briggs, and in doing so showed why he’s considered a serious contender to win the competition with some good break building.

The Legion’s Mark Riley and a pre tournament favourite, then gained his long awaited revenge in beating the Socials Gary Simkin 3-0 who knocked Riley out in the semi final stages of the 2013 competition, and showed why he’s rightly considered to be a hot favourite to win the competition.

The Low Moor’s Gavin McQuade then quickly disposed of the Legions Stephen Winckley 3-0, and the Low Moor veteran will prove a tough opponent in the next round if he continues his league form.

In the best match of the last 16, another pre-tournament favourite and 2012 winner in the Legions Steve Almond played the young Low Moor’s Chris Hayton, and Almond won it 3-2 on the last black, after coming back from 2-0 down, but Hayton will be back and has showed he is vastly improving his game and is one to watch for the future.

The quarter final draw has then thrown up some cracking ties, with the two youngest players left in the competition in Legion team mates Mark Hitchen and Liam Sutcliffe, with Sutcliffe hoping Hitchen’s recent good form deserts him he finally lives up to his promising talent that he has.

Stephen Ollie Almond then takes on Eric Barnes, in what could prove to be a close game to call, and both are more than capable of winning the comp outright, but Almond will need to bring his A game to the table.

In another cracking tie, the Legions Dean Walmsley will be hoping he takes his good league form in his game against Gavin McQuade, but the Low Moor man will be no easy pushover and both are more than capable of winning the competition.

Arguably the tie of the round has paired the two pre-tournament favourites in the Legion team mates of Mark Riley against the 2012 winner Steve Almond, with both players hoping to have the bragging rights and Almond hoping to win another title, but Riley would like nothing more than to put one over his team mate and progress in the comp.