Top local pool player Mark Gray has just won the biggest event on the English calendar.
The 45 year-old Bourne Snooker Club professional stormed to victory in the UK Open at the Radisson Park Hotel in Telford to collect a winner’s cheque for £2,000.
It was also a GB9 Ball Tour event for which Mosconi Cup points were up for grabs but it’s highly unlikely Gray will make the Europe team to face the USA this year.
He explained: “The Mosconi Cup points don’t really make too much odds to me as I have not chased the Mosconi dream this year. I have missed a lot of events - the main reason being my dad passed away last year and I lost motivation for playing. So this win is dedicated to him as he always loved following my results.”
Gray had to play seven matches to win the title. He beat Poland’s Wojtek Szewczyk, a Mosconi Cup prospect, 11-9 in the final and nobody got anywhere near him in earlier rounds.
His results were:
Round 1: won 9-3 v Shane Ohara (Bristol and a former winner on Gb Tour)
Round 2: won 9-6 v Benji Buckley (Sheffield)
Round 3: won 9-5 v Michael Beeston (Crewe)
Last 16: won 9-2 Benji Buckley.
Last 8: won 9-2 v Stewart Colclough (Manchester)
Semis: won 9-3 Lee Creighton (Scotland)
Final: won 11-9 Wojtek Szewczyk (Poland).
Gray has moved back upto number one in the GB9 rankings but a lack of events on the Euro Tour has seen him drop to number 28 in Europe.