Main man at Tees Sport Blackpool Grand Prix

Author:
Russell Moore

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Men’s Band 1:

Fifth seed Richard Main upset the odds to take home the Men’s Band 1 title from the Tees Sport Blackpool Grand Prix.

Despite finishing runner-up in his group to top seed Stephen Beerling, he was able to progress through his quarter-final against Welshman Dan O’Connell with relative ease 3-0 (11-7, 13-11, 11-9).

In the semi-final he faced fellow Scot, Scott Barton who had beaten his brother Chris Main in a five-game quarter-final. This time the Main family got their revenge with a comfortable 3-0 (11-5, 12-10, 11-9) win.

In the final he met Liam McTiernan who surprised the favourite Beerling in a scintillating semi-final. Taking his chances at every opportunity, McTiernan progressed in straight games 3-0 (13-11, 11-9, 11-7).

However, McTiernan was unable to do the same in the final. When the crucial points came it was Main who made the difference and won in three tight ends 3-0 (13-11, 12-10, 12-10).

Women’s Band 1:

Angharad Phillips won the Women’s Band 1 title but not before completing two huge comeback wins as well as a semi-final duel with her sister Megan.

Angharad, who faced Nicole Hall in the final, beat her compatriot 3-1 when they met in the group – little knowing that they would meet again at the final hurdle.

However, her biggest test came against Corinna Whitaker in the group stage where she came back from 2-0 down to win 3-2 (8-11, 6-11, 11-8, 11-8, 11-5). She then faced sister Megan in the semi-final where their similar styles produced a close encounter, resulting in a narrow 3-1 (9-11, 12-10, 11-8, 11-8) win.

Hall, on the other half of the draw, beat Gillian Edwards in a similar fashion. Extending herself to the full five games 3-2 (11-6, 10-12, 11-4, 3-11, 11-8).

The final was another excellent, see-sawing encounter with the tide crucially turning against the weary-legged Hall in the third game. After leading 2-0, Angharad fought back with ever-increasing ease to claim the top prize.

Men’s Band 2:

Roman Doryn powered his way to the Men’s Band 2 title with a repertoire of forceful backhands that were too hot to handle for all of his respective opponents.

After surging through his group, the Pole first beat Ryan Fellows 3-0 before defeating Mike Fraser by the same scoreline, Fraser possibly weary after a five-game battle with Steve Joslin.

In the top half of the draw, top seed Sam Logue had to win back-to-back five-enders against Lewis Williams 3-2 (9-11, 11-2, 7-11, 11-9, 11-7) and Chris Wheeler 3-2 (8-11, 11-8, 11-13, 11-1, 11-4).

When Doryn and Logue met in the final there was only one winner with the Irish player unable to cope with those booming backhands as Doryn swept home in a straight games win.

Women’s Band 2:

Nicole Hall produced a fantastic comeback win against Scot Gillian Edwards to win against the odds in Women’s Band 2.

Top seed Edwards had progressed steadily through her group and won her semi-final comfortably 3-0 over compatriot Lynda Flaws. However, in the final she met Hall who had echoed her progress with a straight games win over Corinna Whitaker.

In the final Edwards took control by claiming the opening two games but Hall held her nerve to win the third 11-9 before forcing a decider by winning the fourth 11-5. The final game was another tight one but Hall had enough in the tank to hold on 11-9.

Men’s Band 3:

David Thompson overcame a 2-0 deficit in a decisive quarter-final en route to winning the Men’s band 3 crown.

His crucial victory came against Rob Owen after Owen himself had shocked top seed Steve Joslin 3-1 in the previous round. After losing the first two games 11-1 and 11-8, Thompson finally recovered to win the next three games 11-5, 11-9, 11-7 to seal a semi-final spot.

There he beat Ryan Fellows 3-0 before repeating the dose in the final against Sam Hitchen, who had himself beaten Adam Smith, Martin Rutter and Ryan Oyler in the knockout stages.

Women’s Band 3:

Emily Bolton won her second title of the day (following her band 4 triumph below) by once again beating Maria Lebedeva to the title (again, see below).

After progressing from their groups the duo faced very different routes to the final. While Bolton was seeded and had a bye to the semi-final, Lebedeva had to battle through an additional knockout round before facing the seeded Lucy Elliott.

Lebedeva beat Zoe Cheesman 3-1, then Elliott in a five-game classic 3-2 (13-15, 13-11, 8-11, 11-7, 15-13). Meanwhile, Bolton made the final with a straightforward 3-0 win over Rebecca Bayley.

The final was similar to the previous time the pair met in band 4, again being won by Bolton in four games, as the youngster was crowned for a second time on Saturday.

Men’s Band 4:

Ryan Oyler came from ninth seed in the Men’s Band 4 to win a hotly-contested event with a number of players in with a genuine chance of taking the title home.

After winning group 4, Oyler beat Steven Gray 3-0, before quarter-final and semi-final wins over Rob Owen (3-1) and Adam Feargrieve (3-1). In the final he met Shaun Slater who had overcome a five-game first round thriller with Bonne Habekost 3-2 (3-11, 11-4, 11-1, 9-11, 11-4) before beating both Daniel McTiernan and Jamies Davies 3-0.

The final was a tight affair, eventually decided in the fourth game by the Welshman. After winning the opening two games 11-8, Slater replied 13-11 only to see his hopes dashed when Oyler took the fourth 12-10.

Women’s Band 4:

Emily Bolton won the first title at the Tees Sport Blackpool Grand Prix when she raced through the round-robin on Saturday morning.

She won all four of her matches against Sigourney Ducksbury, Jo Keighley, Maria Lebedeva and Soffi Jenkins, dropping only one game in the process to eventual runner-up Lebedeva. Their clash was the pick of the matches with four tight games falling the way of Bolton 3-1 (10-12, 11-9, 11-9, 12-10)

Men’s Band 5:

Chris Griffiths secured his second title of the day (see below) after claiming the Men’s Band 5 with a consummate performance over Adam Jepson.

Griffiths toughest test came in the semi-final against Hakan Pehlivan where he only narrowly progressed 3-2 after coming from 2-0 behind. Jepson meanwhile had victories over Matthew Stephens, Craig Preece and Bonne Haberkost.

The final was unfortunately one-sided with Griffiths winning in three straight games.

Men’s Band 6:

Chris Griffiths became the third Welsh player to win a morning band when he sealed a straight-games final victory over Marcus Reynolds in Men’s Band 6.

He had to battle it out through four knockout matches to win the title after being seeded sixth for the band. In the preliminary round he beat James Garbett 3-0 before beating fellow Welshman Jac Jenkins 3-1 and experienced chopper John Holland by the same scoreline.

Reynolds, meanwhile, had beaten first Ryan Lunn, then Sean Drewry and Sam Clayton before falling at the final hurdle to the youngster from Wales.

Tees Sport Blackpool Grand Prix Saturday Results
Men’s Band 1: Richard Main bt Liam McTiernan 3-0 (13-11, 12-10, 12-10)
Women’s Band 1: Angharad Phillips bt Nicole Hall 3-2 (8-11, 11-13, 11-2, 11-6, 11-6)
Men’s Band 2: Roman Doryn bt Sam Logue 3-0 (11-6, 11-9, 11-9)
Women’s Band 2: Nicole Hall bt Gillian Edwards 3-2 (6-11, 7-11, 11-9, 11-5, 11-9)
Men’s Band 3: David Thompson bt Sam Hitchen 3-0 (11-6, 11-1, 11-9)
Women’s Band 3: Emily Bolton bt Maria Lebedeva  3-1 (6-11, 11-7, 11-4, 11-6)
Men’s Band 4: Ryan Oyler bt Shaun Slater 3-1 (11-8, 11-8, 11-13, 12-10)
Women’s Band 4: Emily Bolton won round-robin
Men’s Band 5: Chris Griffiths bt Adam Jepson 3-0 (11-6, 11-9, 11-8)
Men’s Band 6: Chris Griffiths bt Marcus Reynolds 3-0 (11-7, 11-8, 11-7)

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