AC Spring Handicap Singles Tournament, 17th & 18th April 2023
The Barneses Cups
All our independently playing AC players
It has been more than 15 years since we have had this many competing AC players. Long-time AC supremo Raghu Iyer sits proudly centre stage for this recent times record setting group photo (taken by Cliff Hampton)
Back row: Russell Robinson, Paul Franklin, Rob Eagle, Robin Coates, Richard Peperell, Kevin Ward.
Front row: Jeff Smith, Chris Roberts, Frances Colman, Raghu Iyer, Patricia Mulcahy, Rick Lilley, Roger Goldring.
The tournament was divided into two "classes", the Senior class which was won by Roger Goldring and the Junior class which was won by Russell Robinson.
Goldring wins our AC Handicap tournament Senior Class at the 'golden hoop'
There was high drama at the end of the final of the senior class of our 2-day AC handicap tournament today, when Roger Goldring and Kevin Ward ended with tied scores at the time limit.
Both had been undefeated going into the final, having each won their four player blocks.
Ward looked to have been in the box seat when in play at 'time' but he stuck in the jaws of a hoop that would given him a crucial lead with Goldring permitted one more visit to the court.
Goldring had to hit the jawsed ball from a tight angle but so gently that he didn't cause it to score the hoop point and he managed this with a deftness of stroke to be proud of.
The game went the into a 'first to score' tie-break, and after much cat and mouse inter-play Goldring got the 'golden hoop' victory, and was rewarded with the senior Barnes Cup for the first time
Robinson wins our AC Handicap tournament Junior Class
Russell Robinson beat a competitive field of five (the largest for many years) and was undefeated in the Junior Class.
Playing 14-point games in an 'all play all' format over the two days, each player had between two and four bisques in each game.
The two-hour time limit seemed apt in the opening game which saw Robinson peg out his second ball in the 'after-time' turn to defeat Patricia Mulcahy 14-3.
Mulcahy had two closer games on day one, a 9-7 win over Rob Eagle but she lost on the 'golden hoop' to Jeff Smith who jawsed his ball with the scores tied at 7-7 in the time turn, presenting an easy tap-in win in extra time.
Earlier Robinson had defeated Smith 10-3 and then Paul Franklin entered the fray in style, beating Eagle 14-4, and then took that excellent form into the second day, to get the better of Mulcahy 14-3 well within the time limit.
Meanwhile, Eagle was very much in the hunt against Robinson, before the latter pulled away at the end to win 14-9, again needing the full two hours.
Undefeated Franklin and Robinson then fought out what was probably going to be the 'title decider', in which Robinson established a strong early lead and, with more bisques left in hand, looked the favourite.
As both players struggled with Court 4’s undulations, Franklin overhauled Robinson's early tally and ground his way to an 8-6 lead himself.
Robinson then pounced on a Franklin error, made a break in the last fifteen minutes and ran out an 11-8 winner, thus staying unbeaten in his four games.
By then, the early morning sunshine had turned into a very cold afternoon; Franklin and Smith went back into action for the last game of the event, in what had become, the 2nd/3rd place decider, which proved to be one of the best and hard-fought games of the tournament.
Smith led for much of the game, but a late break saw Franklin prevail 14-10.