Horsham’s SCBBA Interleague Honours in the last 50 years.
Division One Winners, Home & Away competition:
1958/59, 1959/60, 1960/61, 1961/62, 1962/63, 1963/64, 1964/65, 1965/66, 1966/67, 1969/70, 1970/71, 1973/74, 1974/75, 1984/85 & 1986/87 (Runners-up in 1983/84 & 1989/90).
Division Two Winners:
Horsham B:1984/85 & 1994/95 (Runners-up in 1982/83, 1985/86, 1986/87, 1987/88, 1989/90, 1992/93 and Horsham C: 1990/91); Horsham:
2009/10 (Runners-up in 2008/09)
Division Three Winners:
Horsham C: 1981/82 (Runners-up in 1982/83, 1983/84, 1984/85, 1985/86, 1986/87 & 1988/89)
Division Four Runners-up:
Horsham C: 1999/2000
Division One Winners, One-Day event:
Horsham: 1988/89, 1990/91 (Runners-up in 1993/94)
Division Two Winners, One-Day event:
Horsham: 2004/05, 2006/07, 2008/09 (Runners-up in 2010/11 & 12/13)
Runners-up,One-Day event for B/C teams:
Horsham B: 2002/03
Ladies’ competition Winners:
1974/75, 1975/76, 1976/77, 1988/89, 1990/91, 1991/92 & 1994/95 (Runners-up in 1978/79, 1982/83 & 1993/94)
Horsham’s County Honours in the last 50 years.
Notes: Good tradition in Mens County Champions (7 in all); Jackie Spooner the main contender in the Ladies with 4 final appearances and two titles.
Ladies Doubles: the ‘2 Lyns’ have been in the final 5 times, emerging from 4 of these as Champions.
Well represented in the Captains Cup, Senior Singles and Masters.
Have excelled in the Champion-of-Champions, 10 final appearances from 6 different players, and on the winning side in all but one of these.
In the Watney Mann, have provided the champion team 3 times – but none this century.
Mens Singles Champion 1965/66: Johnny Smith
Mens Singles Champion 1966/67: Pete Roberts
Mens Singles Champion 1967/68: Mick Foskett
Mens Singles Champion 1970/71: Rod Tarratt
Mens Singles Champion 1981/82: Tony Franks (also runner-up in 84/85 & 89/90)
Mens Singles Champion 1985/86: Gerry McCarthy
Mens Singles Champion 2007/08: Ricky Dewdney
Mens Singles Champion 2010/11: Gareth Lloyd (also runner-up in 2015/16)
Mens Singles Runner-up 2012/13: Dave Ingram
Mens Singles Runner-up 2016/17: Jim Greensted
Ladies Singles Champion 1974/75: Doris Cordery
Ladies Singles runner-up 1976/77: Sharon Boniface
Ladies Singles Champion 1977/78 & 79/80: Jackie Spooner (also runner-up in 72/73 & 78/79)
Ladies Singles runner-up 1991/92: Sue Loughran
Ladies Singles Champion 2008/09:& 2015/16: Lorraine Hall
Mens Doubles runners-up 1970/71: Geoff Dumbrill & Tony Tugwell
Mens Doubles runners-up 1975/76: Mick Foskett & Rod Tarratt
Mens Doubles Champions 1985/86: Gerry McCarthy & John Turner
Mens Doubles runners-up 1990/91: Tony Franks & Bob Toye
Mens Doubles runners-up 1993/94: Mick Wright & Neville Edwards
Mens Doubles runners-up 2015/16: Gareth Lloyd & Kevin Hall
Mixed Doubles runners-up 1969/70: Rod Tarratt & Helen Jackson
Mixed Doubles runners-up 1975/76: Chris Porter & Helen Jackson
Mixed Doubles runners-up 1976/77: Mike Hinton & Lyn Hibbard
Mixed Doubles runners-up 1984/85: Ron Child & Lyn Draper
Mixed Doubles Champions 1987/88: Gerry McCarthy & Jackie Spooner
Mixed Doubles Champions 1995/96: Gareth Lloyd & Sue Loughran
Mixed Doubles runners-up 2008/09 & 09/10: Jim Greensted & Lorraine Hall
Ladies Doubles runners-up 1973/74: Eileen Etheridge & Jenny Daubney
Ladies Doubles runners-up 1975/76: Margaret Coble & Helen Jackson
Ladies Doubles Champions 1977/78, 84/85, 87/88 & 88/89: Lyn Draper & Linda Turvey (also runners-up in 81/82)
Ladies Doubles runners-up 1978/79: Jean Jackson & Doreen Ross
Ladies Doubles Champions 1982/83: Doris Cordery & Mandy Harris
Ladies Doubles Champions 2007/08: Jenny Edwards & Lorraine Hall (also runners-up in 2010/11)
Ladies Doubles runners-up 2015/16: Lorraine Hall & Ros Appleby (also in 1999/2000)
Ladies Doubles runners-up 2017/18: Ros Appleby & Michelle Baden
Team Captains Champion 1985/86: Gerry McCarthy (also runner-up in 84/85)
Team Captains runner-up 1987/88: Neville Edwards
Team Captains runner-up 1989/90 & 90/91: John Davie
Team Captains Champion 1993/94 & 94/95: Peter Gibbs
Team Captains runner-up 2001/02 & 02/03: Dick Dewdney
Team Captains runner-up 2007/08: Clive Thompson
Team Captains Champion 2008/09, 09/10 & 11/12: Dave Ingram
Team Captains runner-up 2011/12: Jim Greensted
Senior Singles Champion 1992/93: John Davie
Senior Singles Champion 1994/95: Ray Manser
Senior Singles Champion 1996/97: Tony Francis
Senior Singles Champion 1997/98: Eddy Griffin
Senior Singles runner-up 1997/98: Darrell Skinner
Senior Singles Champion 2011/12: Jim Greensted
Mens Champion-of-Champions 1973/74: Jim Baker
Mens Champion-of-Champions 1984/85 & 91/92: Peter Gibbs
Mens Champion-of-Champions 1986/87 & 88/89: Terry Race
Mens Champion-of-Champions runner-up 1987/88: Gerry McCarthy
Mens Champion-of-Champions 1995/96, 98/99 & 1999/2000: Gareth Lloyd
Mens Champion-of-Champions 2001/02: John Slee (also runner-up in 1979/80)
Ladies Champion-of-Champions 1981/82: Lyn Draper(also runner-up in 79/80)
Ladies Champion-of-Champions 1989/90: Sue Loughran
Masters Champion 1995/96 & 2005/06: Gareth Lloyd (also runner-up in 98/99)
Masters Champion 1997/98: Peter Gibbs (also runner-up in 95/96)
Masters Champion 1999/2000: John Slee
Masters Champion 2002/03: Ricky Dewdney
Watney Mann Champions 1978/79: White Hart Cranleigh
Watney Mann Champions 1979/80 & 80/81: Bell A
Watney Mann Champions 1987/88: Cranleigh RBL
Watney Mann Champions 1997/98: Limeburners
Watney Mann runners-up 1998/99: Rising Sun
Champion-of-Champions Write-ups from West Sussex County Times:
Billingshurst produces county bar billiards champions. This could well be the claim after village title-holder Andy Gilbert succeeded to the champion-of-champions title of fellow league member John Thayre.
Andy took over the Lanaway Cup from John Thayre after beating Horsham League top man John Slee in Sunday’s Sussex Bar Billiards Charity Association’s annual competition at the Horsham YMCA clubhouse.
Andy and John Slee are both members of the Horsham Interleague team, but ,with Andy’s impending move to Brighton, they could soon be playing on opposite sides.
And Billingshurst will have a tough task to make it a champion-of-champions hat-trick next year !
Andy has played for the Railway, Billingshurst, the Crabtree, Lower Beeding and the Michell Arms, Horsham. Now his team will be that of the Gladstone Arms, Brighton.
John reached his place in the final at the expense of the Mid Sussex champion, Mick Roberts, but his chances of winning the cup were hit when Andy carried forward a 5,000 point advantage into the second game of the final.
In the ladies competition for the Cynthia Bostock Cup, Horsham champion Lyn Draper of the Three Bees also found Worthing’s Ann Richards a bit too powerful for her in the Final. Representatives of 11 leagues took part in the competition, and cups for the individual and club – or pub – raising the most for the cancer relief charity went to Mr Ron Child (£150) and his venue the Green Man (£733). During the evening a cheque for the £3000 raised in 1978-79 was handed over for the purchase of equipment.
In charge of the impressive George Lanaway Cup before the Sussex Bar Billiards Charity Association champion-of-champions contest is president Ron Child with two of the competitors, Horsham champion Bill Phillips and John Thayre, champion of the Billingshurst League. Horsham’s Lyn Draper and Billingshurst’s Elaine Hunt competed in the Cynthia Bostock Cup which also took place on Sunday at the Horsham YMCA FC hall.
Bill beat Lewes’s Trevor Rees 5390-1520 in his first game, but went down to the eventual winner from Portslade, Mike Ingram 4990-6850. John swept home against Crawley’s Andy Finn 10,290-5080 but was edged out by Hastings’ R.Andrews, the eventual runner-up, by 6200-6680.
For the ladies, Elaine was beaten in her first game by Kim Hart of Hastings 1660-3360, and Lyn found Danielle Silver from Littlehampton too tough an opponent and went down 2180-3590. Danielle went on to beat Sheila Pinner 6750-6520 in the final over two legs. The competition was jointly organised by Mr Child and secretary Mrs Gwyneth Mercer.
Horsham’s Lyn Draper, who won Sunday’s Sussex Cancer Charity’s champion-of-champions title at the YMCA Hall in Horsham was lucky to even be in the tournament! For Horsham’s reigning champ, Sandra Sampson, was not available to enter and so Lyn was asked to take over as the League’s representative.
Lyn certainly justified her selection, beating Linda Heron of Crawley in the semi-finals - and then Jan Lewes of Brighton in the final with a total of 9700.
Horsham’s men did not fare so well, with Steve Eely falling at the first hurdle to Tim Peacock of Mid Sussex, who made it to the Final. Billingshurst’s John Turner also lost in the first round.
Horsham’s Peter Gibbs is the new Champion-of-Champions following the Sussex Bar Billiards Charity Association’s annual playoff, held at Horsham British Legion. Peter follows in the footsteps of Tony Franks by switching allegiances to Horsham and finding fame at County level: He was formerly Crawley’s most successful and feared player before moving to play for Horsham YMCA FC A.
He then won the League’s individual title at his first attempt, beating Franks, which qualified him to take part in Saturday’s competition.
Usually the champions of the 12 leagues in Sussex take part, but only five turned up this time which meant the programme had to be hurriedly rearranged.
Peter won the event (George Lanaway Cup) with the Brighton League’s Terry Race runner-up, while lady champion was Jean Over (Brighton) with Ann Richards (Worthing) runner-up.
The Bat and Ball from Wisborough Green won the trophy for most money collected for charity during the past year (£1000) with the Green Man, Partridge Green, runner-up with £600. Green Man’s Ron Child took the individual award with £147. Cheques were then presented to Betty, Dr DeWinter’s assistant at the Brighton Cancer Prevention Clinic (£400) and to Mr R.Brayhon, chairman of the management committee of Coppercliff, Brighton (£1000).
Horsham individual bar billiards champion Gerry McCarthy came agonisingly close to reaching the Final of the 1985 Sussex Champion-of-Champions competition. Having exacted revenge on Billingshurst title winner Colin Merriott (for Final defeat last April) with a marvellous break of 10,000 points, Gerry stood proudly at the top of his group with four straight wins.
But then disaster struck as he was beaten by the Hastings champion which allowed Worthing’s Roger Taylor to qualify instead by virtue of a slightly superior average.
Barry Timson of Longleys Club, Crawley, was the other qualifier from, if anything, a stronger group but he went down heavily in the final to Taylor.
It was a similar state of affairs in the ladies competition with Lewes’ Jan Bithell just failing to make it five straight wins and losing out to Portslade’s Ann Richards on a better average. Brighton’s Jean Over then gave a clinical exhibition in the Final to add yet another title to her collection. Horsham’s Karen Bicknell had earlier acquitted herself well, winning three of her five games.
Red Lion (Cowfold) bar billiards player Terry Race followed up his Sussex Champion-of-champions success (representing Horsham, he defeated Gerry Smith of Mid Sussex in the Final) by reaching the quarter-finals of the British Isles Open in Jersey last weekend; a Berkshire player eventually won the event.
Local bar billiards stars Peter Gibbs and Gerry McCarthy dominated the Sussex Champion-of-Champions competition on Saturday, Gibbs taking the title with a 2-0 win over McCarthy in the Final.
Gibbs was representing the Billingshurst League, in which both men play for the Green Dragon. They are also Horsham League team mates for YMCA FC and McCarthy was carrying Horsham colours for the occasion.
It was a disappointing final, with McCarthy failing to recapture his form of the qualifying rounds in which he suffered only one defeat in five matches.
In his final group match against Nigel Trott (Lewes), McCarthy needed to win and score 3660 points to top the table on total points from Gary Ridley (Brighton) and Dave Evans (Crawley) who also had four victories. McCarthy made light of the task, achieving the highest score of the day as he raced home 10,320-500.
Gibbs had a tougher time in his group matches. His 40-point victory over Julian Deeprose (Hastings) meant that both men went into the final round with one defeat. Deeprose then scored heavily in his last match, to leave Gibbs needing to score 7870 against Mick Freeman (West-Sussex). It looked as if the Horsham man’s chance had gone when his opening break ground to a halt at 6990. But Freeman was unable to play out the clock and Gibbs scrambled to the target, winning 8030-1850.
In the ladies’ competition, Horsham’s Jan Merritt (YMCA) and Billingshurst’s Lyn Draper found themselves in the same group. Merritt had two wins, Draper one, and they were eliminated – though not before both had the satisfaction of taking a win against former England champion Jean Over of Brighton.
Watney Mann Write-ups from West Sussex County Times:
White Hart, Cranleigh, representing the Horsham League, just failed to take the SCBBA’s Watney Mann Cup: Disaster struck in the third game of their second leg final with Beach Hotel, Littlehampton on Monday.
Having lost the first leg 0-5 at the Beach, they replied in fine style by winning the first two games, but then Harold Peacock, playing well below form, was beaten by Derek Ifould. This clinched the match for the visitors, but the home side easily won the final two games to make the score (6-4) respectable.
Scores (White Hart first): Tony Lewis 3870, D.Holder 1360; Tony Hawkes 4590, Frank Sumner 2070; Harold Peacock 1860, Derek Ifould 5420; Trevor Wheeler 6700, P.Hayler 760; Nigel Chandler 5630, John Babbage 1040.
Bell Inn bar billiards captain Colin Peskett is congratulated by Spreadeagle (Brighton) skipper Dave Lewes after the Horsham champions’ first leg 4-1 win in the Watney Mann Cup final. But there will be no quarter asked, or given, when the local side play the second leg of the contest that could make them County Champions at the Albion, Brighton on October 23rd.
Horsham Bar Billiards League champions the Bell meet Mid Sussex League title-holders Royal Oak, Jacobs Post in the two-leg semi-final of the Watney Mann Cup.
Success would take them into the final to find the county Champion-of-Champion team against either the Crawley League’s Star (Rusper) or the Crabtree (Lancing) from the Portslade League. One month later………………….
Bell A, Horsham, recovered from a setback to comfortably win the Watney Mann bar billiards Cup Final against the Crabtree, Lancing.
The Horsham League team had already clocked up a 3-2 lead in the first leg but, in the first match at the Bell Inn on Sunday, Crabtree captain Gary Ridley beat Bell skipper Colin Peskett to level the match score. But that was the only success for the Portslade League visitors as the Bell snapped up the remaining four games for a 7-3 victory. Sussex County Bar Billiards Association Secretary Charles Cordery presented the Watney Mann Cup to Colin Peskett.
Scores (Bell A first): Colin Peskett 0, Gary Ridley 1940; Pete McNamara 5150, Dave Jones 1130; Tony Franks 5180, Barry Squires 1820; John Slee 6450, Steve Thomas 2060; Bob Rice 2690, Jim Millward 2410.
Origins of the H.D.B.B.L.
Evidence of pre-war organised bar billiards activity in Sussex has surfaced from West Sussex County Times archives, with honourable mention for the following venues in 1940:
Horsham Rural: Crown (Horsham); Sussex Oak (Warnham); Blacksmiths Arms (Shipley); Crown (Alfold); Onslow Arms (Loxwood).
Further afield: Black Lion, Patcham; Royal Oak, (?)*; Thomas 'A Becket, Worthing; Bull, Goring-by-Sea. (* this could be the one at North Bersted, now known as the Pink Pub - other candidates include the one at Crawley Down and the one at Wivelsfield)
Bar billiards receives no further mentions at all throughout the 1940's - until the formation of HDBBL in 1949. It is conceivable, therefore, that such a trivial pursuit as bar billiards was cast aside in consideration of the other more pressing matter of sheer survival during WWII !
Q) Percy Barnett was Honorary Secretary from when the Billingshurst league was formed in September 1964. Before 1964, I understand that Percy was the Secretary of the Horsham League, can anyone shed any light as to why he left that league to form the Billingshurst League? - John Tidy, Hon Sec, Billingshurst League
A) Percy had the dirty done on him and was ousted as Horsham Secretary following a witch hunt. Before him the popular Charlie Francis had been Secretary. But both successive Secretaries after Percy proved to be disasters in the job, and eventually some stability was found in the form of Gwyneth and Arthur Mercer, both non-players, who held the Secretary and Treasurer posts for the next 17 years - until another well-revered husband-and-wife took over from 1982 to 1992 ! – Clive T
So, on to evidence of the League’s formation……………
West Sussex County Times, Published: Friday 30 September 1949
BAR BILLIARDS LEAGUE FORMED To Raise Funds for the Blind. A meeting at the Queen's Head Hotel. Horsham, in September was attended by several local licensees. It was decided to inaugurate a bar billiards league—to be known as the Horsham and District Bar Billiards League
OFFER OF TROPHY: The firm Mr. Tarratt represented—Sussex Bar Billiards Limited—had offered to provide a trophy for competition, and it was hoped that each licensed house in the area possessing bar billiards facilities would be able to raise one or two teams ..
West Sussex County Times, Published: Friday 28 October 1949
Bar Billiards League: The Nelson heads the Billiards League at the moment: Most unfortunate team in the League is that from the Rising Sun. Two of their players knocked down the black skittle at the end of their games, and did not have time ...
West Sussex County Times, Published: Friday 04 November 1949
Bar Billiards League: Nelson continue undefeated at the top of the League while Horse and Groom and Plough are at level pegging in ...
West Sussex County Times, Published: Friday 11 November 1949
Bar Billiards League The Rising Sun had their first success in the Bar Billiards League with a full points win over the Plough who drop back from third position to fourth. Altogether it was a bad night for away teams. Results: Queen's Head 3, Crown 1...
West Sussex County Times, Published: Friday 18 November 1949
Bar Billiards: One of the most outstanding performances of the week was that of the Star Inn in winning three of their four away games of the match against the Plough. Results: Hornbrook 3. Crown 1; Nelson 3, White Hart 1; Plough 1, Star 3: Rising Sun ...
West Sussex County Times, Published: Friday 25 November 1949
BAR BILLIARDS: Star Inn improved their position in the Bar Billiards league by means of a win over the Plough, only dropping one point. Crown 2, Hornbrook 2: ...
West Sussex County Times, Published: Friday 02 December 1949
BAR BILLIARDS: Rising Sun players came back on form with a clear win over the Crown, while in two of the other matches honours were evenly divided. .. Hornbrook 2. Queen's Head 2: Plough 2 Horse and Groom 2: Rising Sun 4. Crown 0; Star 3, White Hart 1.
West Sussex County Times, Published: Friday 09 December 1949
BAR BILLIARDS: The competing teams have reached the halfway mark in their fixtures. Crown 2, Rising Sun 2: Horse and Groom 1, Plough Inn 3; Queens Head 2, Hornbrook 2 ; White Hart 0, Star Inn 4. Team Cup drew Plough versus Hornbrook ...
West Sussex County Times, Published: Friday 16 December 1949
Bar Billiards: Crown Inn are steadily picking up points, while Nelson still remain at the top with the Star close behind them. Queens Head ...
West Sussex County Times, Published: Friday 23 December 1949
Bar Billiards: The Crown team did very well, taking maximum points with the two others only dropping one point. Though the Crown winning all their [splines tlw•y some] from the bottom of the table. Results:— Crown 4, White Hart 0; Hornbrook ...
West Sussex County Times, Published: Friday 30 December 1949
Bar Billiards: With 7410 Johnny Smith (Horse and Groom) registered the highest break for the season in the Bar Billiards League. The previous best was 4410 made by Len Tibbles (Plough) in the middle of November. Home and Groom 3, Crown 1: Nelson 3 Hornbrook 1.
1. Horsham League formed in September 1949.
2. Founder member teams: Nelson, Horse & Groom, Plough, Rising Sun, Queens Head, Crown, Star, Hornbrook, White Hart.
3. It seems that to begin with all the teams – apart from the Plough - were based in Horsham itself, with the Crown Inn being the one in the Carfax rather than the one at Alfold.
4. The White Hart would be the one demolished where Smith and Western now stands, and both the Star and the Rising Sun would be the original pubs replaced by later buildings in the early 1960’s.
Clive Thompson, April 2018
Mens’ All-England/Southern Counties West Sussex County Times write-ups...
Horsham’s Mike Owen and Billingshurst’s Rod Tarratt, who meet for the
individual championship of the
Billingshurst Bar Billiards League at Pulborough tonight, are members
of the Sussex team to play Hampshire
at Brighton on May 16.
Following Hampshire’s surprise 6-1 defeat of Surrey, Sussex have to win
by the same margin to become group
champions and qualify for a play-off for the Southern Counties title.
The other members of the team are: Jim Baker and Mike Foskett (Five Oaks),
Gordon Albury (Hornbrook) and Tim Peacock and Reg Beard (Mid Sussex).
Reserves are Jeff Daniels and Peter Wickersham (Hornbrook); John Rayner
(Shipley), Norman Edwards (Littlehampton) and Ian Lelliott (Worthing).
Having beaten Surrey 4-3 away, Sussex are confident of completing the
inter-county bar billiards double when they entertain the Surrey players
at Southwater Cricket Club on April 15.
Scores in the match at the Royal Earlswood Hospital were (Surrey names
B.Potts 3760, Rod Tarratt (Hor.) 2620; Alf Hunnisett 4820, Mick Foskett
A.Brinklow 4660, Derek Standing (Hast.) 3320; A.Hosford 2090, Tony
Tugwell (Hor.) 4740; A.Jeffery 4010, Roger Collins (Hast.) 5530; Jon Peters
7470, Colin Brown (Hor.) 4590; A.Hall 2600, Arthur Spencer (Hast.) 7650.
The Sussex bar billiards team, which includes several local players, has won
the All-England bar billiards championship for the third successive occasion:
It is a record that is unlikely to be repeated as the game becomes increasingly
Between 300 and 350 people watched the national body’s president, Southwater’s
Ralph Tarratt, present the trophy to non-playing captain Mick Foskett, who
also lives locally.
And just to make the occasion complete, a Sussex team from the North Star,
Durrington won the national team cup competition.
Sussex, the south’s representative, beat Berkshire, who represented the north,
4-3, so it was by no means a walkover. In fact, Sussex were without the services
of Portslade’s Steve Page who, due to a misunderstanding, went to Southsea
instead of Selsey, where the competition was held on the pier. Mike Foskett
stepped in, but, plainly unprepared, went down 2500-6880 pts.
Sussex made a good start in the final of the competition, in which the
representatives of 14 counties took part, when Partridge Green’s Rod Tarratt
swept his opponent aside 9810 to 1700, but then Mike Foskett lost his game.
John Thayre of Alfold put the county back on course with a 10,530-500 success,
Mike Hinton of Upper Beeding consolidated with 6340-3730, and Reg Mehr of
Portslade made it 4-1 with 8640-0 as Sussex made sure of victory.
Berkshire showed they were not finished, however, by taking the final two games
as Peter Thayre of Alfold (500-11580) and Mike Ingram of Portslade (5730-6510)
In the Team competition mentioned earlier, a total of 500 or more pubs had taken
Horsham’s John Slee and brothers John and Peter Thayre (Billingshurst) featured
in the Sussex squad for the Southern Counties tournament held at Tonbridge,
Kent on March 18. Unluckily they missed out by a single point to Hampshire –
after Brighton star Colin Smith lost a break of over 9000 points in one of his games.
Hampshire topped the table with 14pts, while Sussex and Kent each had 13 and
Surrey had 8pts.
The rest of the squad representing Sussex were: Mike Ingram, Reg Mehr, Doug and
Steve Page (Portslade), Dave Elliott and Tom Walters (Brighton), Vince Ryan
(Littlehampton), and Mike Hinton and Ian Lelliott (Worthing).
Sussex were beaten into second place by Buckinghamshire in the All-England Bar
Billiards Association intercounties final, at the Royal Earlswood Hospital, Redhill
on April 13. They had an excellent 7-0 victory over Surrey in the first round, but
slipped badly in the second and third rounds to win only six out of a further 14 games.
Sussex Captain Doug Page was the only Sussex player to win all three games, while
John Thayre, Colin Smith, Steve Page and Mike Ingram won two each. Also in the
squad were John Slee (Horsham), Bill Phillips (Billingshurst), Dave Lewes (Brighton)
and Roger Taylor (Littlehampton).
Bucks now meet Kent in the grand final of the competition at the Sunallon Club,
Horsham on October 28 when club championship prizes will be presented by a
director of sponsors Aidelle Products, and other awards will be handed over by
newsreader Reginald Bosanquet.
Main event of the day will be the All-England club team championship between
teams from nine counties (Sussex, Surrey, Hants and Kent plus Berks, Bucks, Herts,
Northants and Oxfordshire). Sussex will be represented by the North Star (Durrington)
who beat another Worthing team, Old House At Home, 3-2. Meanwhile, on October
14 the Southern Counties team event takes place at Horsham YMCA FC’s clubhouse.
The Sussex bar billiards team had only limited success in the AEBBA inter-counties
(Grp 2) championship at Roffey on Sunday. The team of seven won two and lost two
matches and finished third overall with 14pts – behind Hampshire (17pts) and
Cambridgeshire (15.5pts). Sussex’s match results were: Northants 2, Sussex 5
(J.Dobson, T.Owen, J.Slee, J.Sullivan, J.Thayre); Sussex 4, Herts 3 (J.Dobson, T.Owen,
J.Slee, J.Thayre); Cambridge 5, Sussex 2 (J.Sullivan, S.Thomas); Sussex 3, Hants 4
(J.Dobson, T.Owen, S.Thomas)
1980/81 “Mucky Duck reach the heights”
1) 03 Oct 1980 It’s smiles all round as Mucky Duck, Tismans Common landlord
Bernard Hill and wife Linda show off the trophies the pub team received after
winning the Sussex final of the AEBBA team championship on Monday. The Mucky
Duck played the County Club, Littlehampton, at the Moonraker, Crawley, and narrowly
won 3-2. The team of (l to r) Tony Franks, John Thayre, Pete McNamara, Colin Peskett
(capt.), John Slee and Peter Thayre were all-square at 2-2, but the Mucky Duck skipper
then beat his opposite number.
This has put the side into the national final at Byfleet on Sunday November 16, when 11
other teams from all over the country compete for the £350 first prize and trophy.
Match scores for Mucky Duck v County Club: P.McNamara lost to Chris Noakes
1720-3020; John Thayre beat A.Stempien 7220-520; John Slee beat D.Simmonds
2950-1590; Tony Franks lost to Ron Bruton 2010-2110; Colin Peskett beat Norman
2) Mucky Duck, Tisman’s Common bar billiards team may be representing Sussex
twice in the space of a week: On Sunday they will be competing for the team section
in the finals of the AEBBA’s team and inter-counties championships at Byfleet. Mucky
Duck are grouped with Suffolk and Herts in the first round, and the winners go into
On the following Saturday (Nov 22) the pub team have been asked to represent the
county in the Southern counties inter-county team championships at Tunbridge Wells.
3) The Mucky Duck, Tismans Common, Rudgwick, are the All-England bar billiards
team champions: They beat the Hampshire side, the British Queen, 3-2 in the final at
Byfleet on Sunday after disposing of Kent’s Dolphin team 4-1 in a semi-final. They
had earlier defeated the Swan Inn, Suffolk 4-1 and the Old Shepherd outfit from
Hertfordshire by the same margin in the play-offs.
And tomorrow they will have the chance of doing the double when they represent
Sussex in the Southern Counties Bar Billiards Association team championship at
On Sunday, recordings of interviews with players will be heard on Tony Lewis’s Sport
on Four programme at 8.10am.
In the AEBBA final, the local team lost the opening game in both semi-final and the
final after playing throughout the competition from 1.15pm to 10pm. But Pete
McNamara and John Slee both won all the four games they played. Peter Thayre,
who took over for Colin Peskett after the opening game, won his first two games
but was well beaten in his third after his team had already won the competition.
Scores for the Final (Hampshire names first): A.Crow 12,530, John Thayre 860;
G.Haiselden 790, Pete McNamara 10,760; N.Harding 3660, John Slee 7840;
B.Charlton 1320, Tony Franks 8300; K.Crane 6460, Peter Thayre 830.
4) The Mucky Duck, Tismans Common, march on. On Saturday, representing
Sussex, they added the Southern Counties title to the All-England championship
they won the previous week. Tony Franks was the star of the side at Tunbridge Wells.
He won all three of his games to finish with the impressive average of more than
9000 points a game. Each of the four counties taking part – Hants, Kent, Surrey
and Sussex – played each other once. Mucky Duck made a good start by winning
the first match against Surrey 4-1 after Tony had won the opening game on the last
ball. Teammates John Thayre, John Slee, Pete McNamara and Peter Thayre were
also on form and, in their next match with Kent – it was expected to be a close-fought
contest – the Sussex side won easily 4-1.
At this stage, Mucky Duck were in a very sound position, but if the strong Kent side
could beat Surrey 5-0 it meant that Sussex would need to defeat Hampshire 3-2 to
clinch the championship. Surrey did the Sussex lads a favour, though, by taking
the first two games and so Mucky Duck needed only one game to share the title
and two to win. Hampshire proved tough opposition, but Sussex took their two
games to finish outright winners with ten points. Hants and Kent had eight points
each and Surrey finished with four.
The Sussex team, including Tony Franks and John Thayre of the Mucky Duck;
Steve Merriott of the Five Oaks, and Roger Taylor (Bridge, Upper Beeding) are
through to the final of the All-England Bar Billiards Championship. They did so
by winning their group of the inter-county championships at Cambridge on
Sunday. The finals will take place at the British Aerospace Social Club, Weybridge
on Sunday, November 22.
They opened well by eliminating the holders, Hampshire, 5-2 in their first game,
and then went on to beat Cambridge 6-1, Northants 4-3 and Hertfordshire 6-1.
Franks and Thayre won all their matches in a remarkable team display, inspired
by non-playing captain Colin Peskett.
Tony and John are expected to be members of the Mucky Duck team competing
for the final’s £1000 prize against Park Crescent, Brighton in the All-England
team competition at Ashington Social Club.
Sussex coasted home to win the AEBBA championship 5-2 against Berkshire at
Dunsfold on Sunday but the ladies lost the title they have held for the past four
years to Berkshire 3-4. In addition, the Mucky Duck team from Tismans Common
were unable to recapture the form that gave them the team championship last year,
and went down in the group won by Oxfordshire, the new title-holders.
But it was an outstanding win for Sussex, under non-playing captain Colin Peskett:
After Brighton’s Colin Smith had taken the first game 7900-7210, and Horsham’s
Tony Franks the second 5700-5450, Jeff Dobson of Brighton compiled an
outstanding break of 9910 to which his opponent replied by playing out remainder
of the table for 4410. Billingshurst’s John Thayre then won 9300-3200 and John
Sullivan (Portslade) 7410 before Worthing’s Roger Taylor went down 3650-8890
and Terry Race of Brighton by 2510-7210.
White Hart A from Cranleigh are well on the way to becoming the most successful
bar billiards side in the area as they prepare for the All-England finals at Byfleet
next month. The team won the Worthing League’s Summer Cup competition and
then the players, several of whom also make up the Alfold Social Club side, were
beaten finalists in the Horsham Festival Cup and reached the final of the
Billingshurst League’s Jubilee Cup.
On Saturday, because they won the Surrey zone of the All-England competition,
they represented the county in the Southern Counties section and won that too.
On the way they beat past holders of the All-England title, the Mucky Duck of Sussex.
The three who play in both the White Hart and Alfold sides are Tony Hawkes,
Trevor Wheeler and Tony Lewis. Other players include Harold Peacock, Peter Barnett,
Chris Stevens, Richard Parsons and Nigel Chandler.
In years to come, Sussex bar billiards players will remember November 1982 and say:
this was our darkest month…….For then the AEBBA Inter-counties 7-a-side Finals
were held, together with the National Bar Billiards Association’s team (5-a-side)
championship – and the county slumped in both.
In the mens inter-counties competition, the Sussex team, which has a fairly impressive
record in this competition over recent years, was beaten five games to two by a strong
Kent side. Sussex’s winners were Tony Franks (Bell, Horsham) and John Thayre (Alfold
Club). Representing Sussex in the team championship were, for the third year running,
the Mucky Duck from Tisman’s Common: Two good results in the opening series of
matches put them into the semi-final where they met the Kent representatives from the
Bush at Maidstone. And the Duck team suffered their worst defeat for some time when
they were beaten 0-5. Also playing in the team championship were the White Hart,
Cranleigh representing Surrey, and they reached the final where they lost to the Bush.
1983/84 “Tony Franks wins All-England Championship”
Bell Inn, Horsham’s Tony Franks, the county’s 1981/82 champion, was in sparkling
form to win the mens’ All-England Bar Billiards Association’s individual knockout
competition: After a minor hiccup in the first game when he picked up only three
points out of five, he went on to win his three remaining games of the first series
to head the group with 18 points.
In his last match of the series, he played out the table in the first game with a score
of 15,010 and won the second game, finishing with an aggregate score of 25,440.
He then joined the winners of the other two groups to playoff for the championship,
and sailed through this competition winning all four games played in two matches
to become champion.
While Tony was going through his paces, at High Wycombe, Jean Over from the
Albion Inn, Brighton, took the ladies AEBBA title, to make it a double for Sussex.
Tony Franks (far right) and the Bell A team of 1982/83. (missing from the lineup are Mick Holmwood and John Slee) The trophy haul includes the All-England Singles, Southern Counties, and Sussex Singles - all won by Tony.
A Sussex bar billiards team, aided by the talents of Horsham’s Tony Franks and
John Slee, have won through to the final of the AEBBA Mens’ Championship.
John Slee won a vital final frame to ensure a one-point victory overall.
The other zones were won by Bucks and Oxon, with the three-way final scheduled
for Sunday, Oct 30 at Maidenhead.
1984/85 “Alfold SC emulate Mucky Duck in winning All-England ttile”
Alfold Social Club narrowly beat the Gardeners Arms (Sompting) 3-2 to win the
Sussex area final of the All-England Bar Billiards championships on Monday.
Both teams included two players from the current county squad (John Slee and
Tony Franks for Alfold, and Roger Taylor and Charlie Preston for Gardeners).
Match fortunes swayed back and forth with Gardeners taking a 2-0 lead but
with Alfold pulling back and then winning the final game. Scores (Alfold first):
John Slee 3700, Charlie Preston 7400; John Thayre 700, Bob Bungard 10,200;
Tony Franks 10,500, Roger Taylor 2000; Peter Thayre 4050, Mike Hinton 3740;
Trevor Wheeler 5400, Dave Millard 3800.
………and……….Alfold SC took the National Bar Billiards All-England team
championship with victory from John Thayre ensuring victory in the final game.
Alfold were represented by John and Peter Thayre, Trevor Wheeler, Tony Hawkes,
John Slee and Tony Franks in this 12-team tournament. The Sussex side were in
the group against Surrey, Wilts and Herts. They beat Wilts 5-0 but lost 2-3 to Herts
and, in a tense final match, qualified for the later stages with a 4-1 win over Surrey.
The two remaining groups were a tough battle, with Hants and Bucks making the
final round robin competition. Sussex and Bucks were neck and neck to the very
last series of games when John Thayre came up trumps to win the competition for
Sussex, with local league players Tony Franks, John Slee and Peter Gibbs, retained
the Southern Counties team championship against Kent, Wilts and Hants. After the
initial matches, there was a three-way tie, and so points scored sorted them out with
Sussex first, Kent runners-up and Wilts third. The three local lads won seven out of
their nine frames.
On Saturday at Canterbury the current England team, with Franks and Slee, met a
Canterbury side in a sponsored match. England won easily 10-1, but the points total
was of more interest as around £1400 was raised for local Kent charities.
Horsham leaguers Green Dragon, representing Sussex, have won the Southern
Counties association five-a-side County Championship title. Sussex’s John Slee
chalked up a massive 15,000 points in their first match, when they defeated Surrey
3-2, which proved vital later in the tournament.
Sussex lost the next game 2-3, but overcame their nearest rivals Hampshire 3-2.
Hants had an identical record to Sussex’s, but Slee’s huge score helped them to the
title as they scored more points overall than any other team.
A full record of the Inter-counties for 1991-onwards can be seen by clicking on p5 of the Timeline at the top of this page.
The highest accolade in any sport is to be chosen to represent your country, and that honour has been enjoyed by a handful of players associated with the Horsham League: Tony Franks and Jackie Spooner were in from the start, and John Slee, Peter Gibbs and, more recently, Gareth Lloyd have also had the call-up. Even more recently - this season in fact - Plough B’s Dave Ingram and Mill House’s Lorraine Hall have made their full England debuts. Full details of all the Internationals played between England and Jersey can be found by exploring the AEBBA website. (Also of the Internationals with Guernsey which started in 2005)
A rapid link to the summary page for all County-Run Opens and AEBBA events including Internationals can be found by clicking on Timeline at the top of this page……. or HERE (AEBBA site) for further breakdown of Information. Happy hunting! - - Clive Thompson, June 2018.
Local achievers on a National level:
1975 All-England Singles Champion: Mike Hinton
1983 All-England Singles Champion: Tony Franks (also 3rd in 1991)
1985 All-England Singles, 3rd place: John Davie
2017 All-England Singles Runner-up: Jim Greensted
1983 World Championship, 3rd place: Tony Franks
1978 All-England Ladies Runners-up: Jackie Spooner (also S.Counties R-u 1980)
2009 British Isles Open Ladies Champion: Lorraine Hall (also runner-up in 2010)
2008 All-England Mens Pairs Champion (with Kevin Tunstall): Ricky Dewdney
2008 World Pairs Championship Winner (with Kevin Tunstall): Kevin Hall
2012 World Pairs Championship Winner (with Richard Wooton): Gareth Lloyd
1980 National Team Champions: Mucky Duck, Tismans Common
1984 National Team Champions: Alfold Social Club
1989 National Under-22 Team Champions: Horsham
1994 National Under-23 Runner-up: Gareth Lloyd
2006 Hampshire Open Winner: Gareth Lloyd (also runner-up 2007 Oxon, 2008 Berks, 2009 Bucks)
2009 Hampshire Open Runner-up: Dave Ingram
2011 Bucks Open Runner-up: Ricky Dewdney
2013 East Anglia 4-Pin Open Runner-up: Clive Thompson
2016 Surrey Open Plate Winner: Jim Greensted
2017 Northants Open Plate Winner: Clive Thompson
2017 Bucks Open Plate Winner: Rob Hall
2018 Guernsey Open Pairs Plate Winner (with Phil Osborne): Colin Southouse
2018 Guernsey Open Pairs Plate R-u (with Michelle Baden): Jean Brackenridge
2018 British Isles Ladies Open Winner: Jean Brackenridge
Ladies’ All-England/Southern Counties West Sussex County Times write-ups...
Sussex Ladies retained the Joy Tarratt bar billiards trophy with a magnificent display
against Kent, Surrey and Hampshire at Tonbridge on Saturday (29th April). They lost
only five of their 24 games, and skipper Lyn Draper (Three Bees) contributed towards
the victory with a fine hat-trick attaining scores of 4320, 3780 and 6000 in her matches.
Another Horsham player, Jackie Spooner (Six Bells) having lost her first match against
Surrey then produced scores of 6020 and 6220 to convincingly beat her Hampshire and
This 1978 inter-county championship produced some of the best scores ever recorded
in ladies bar billiards and the highest, 7560, came from Sussex rookie Sheila Pinner
from Worthing. Final placings: 1.Sussex 19pts, 2. Surrey 12pts, 3 Hampshire 9pts and
4 Kent 8pts.
Sussex Ladies stand to win the Joy Tarratt trophy for the third year running: They won
the Southern Counties championship at Salfords, Horley by a mere three points from
Surrey, and they now go forward to the All England Final against a team from the
North later in the year. Jackie Spooner was the girl who clinched it for Sussex.
Horsham Bar Billiards players Lyn Draper (captain) and Jackie Spooner were among the
winners for Sussex in their 5-2 victory over Hertfordshire that brought them the
All-England title at the Sunallon Club, Horsham on Saturday. The three other successes
were scored by Erica Malley, Sheila Pinner and Ann Richards, all from the Worthing League.
The tournament was the biggest of its kind ever held in this country, with 100 games played
in 9 and a half hours on five tables. Finalists in the other two competitions were Kent and
Buckinghamshire. Kent gained revenge in the mens inter-counties final when they beat their
rivals by the odd game in seven with the last game as the decider.
Reginald Bosanquet, the ITN newscaster and All-England Bar Billiards Association patron,
presented the trophies. Sussex County president, Ralph Tarratt, thanked all concerned with
the event, and made a special presentation to Sunallon’s Charles Cordery for his staging of
Jackie Spooner of the Six Bells (Billingshurst) team, the current Sussex and Horsham
champion, was runner-up in the All-England individual ladies championship at Redhill on
Sunday. For the second year running the event was won by Viv Shepherd of Hertfordshire,
but it was Jackie who produced the highest score of the evening by clocking up over 7000
in her third game.
The All-England bar billiards championships may come to Horsham again in October 1979.
Sussex compete in the same section as Surrey, Bucks and Northants and have their playoff
in Surrey in September when the other section, containing Oxon, Kent, Herts, Berks and
Hants play their games in Oxford.
Horsham’s Sarah Beales, Lyn Draper and Linda Turvey are in the Sussex team to play at
Portsmouth in Grp 2 of the AEBBA ladies inter-counties competition on Saturday Oct 18.
Brighton’s Jean Over is also in the team, along with Erica Holt, Jan Ingram, acting-captain
Sheila Pinner and Ann Richards of Worthing.
……..and…..Three Horsham ladies helped Sussex into the Final of the AEBBA championships
on Saturday: Lyn Draper, Linda Turvey and Sarah Beales were in the Sussex team that beat
Northamptonshire and Hampshire at Portsmouth. With Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire
having withdrawn, it was a straight three-way battle. Lyn and Linda both won in the 7-0
defeat of Northants, but Hampshire were successful by the same margin and so there had to
be a playoff. Lyn won her game, and after six legs the score was 3-all. Then Gina Sherratt
of the Brighton league defeated her Hampshire opponent 6350-860 to take the match. The
Final is at the British Aerospace Sports Club, Byfleet, on Sunday November 16.
Horsham’s Jackie Spooner kept the Sussex flag flying in the Southern Counties Bar Billiards
Individual championships at Roffey Sports and Social Club on Sunday by finishing runner-up
to Hampshire’s Jill Garrard. It was Jackie’s first serious competition for several months,
following the birth of her baby. After a shaky start, she picked up three points out of five in
each of the first two series. In the third, she managed to win only two further points , but it
was enough to give her the runners-up spot. Jackie’s scores (v. E. Peters of Surrey) 2430-2490
& 4480-3630; (v. J.Craddock of Kent) 2970-2000 & 1030-3830; (v. J.Garrard of Hants)
5060-1830 & 3140-4210.
A mens Southern Counties competition will be held at Crawley, near Stockbridge, Hants on
March 7, and a Ladies section game has been arranged for April 26 at Tunbridge Wells.
B Although the mens team were knocked out of the inter-counties, the Sussex ladies team will
be at Byfleet on Saturday with Horsham league players Lyn Draper and Linda Turvey in the
side. Horsham’s Doris Cordery is the non-playing team captain, and the rest of the side is:
Jean Over and Gina Sheratt (Brighton) and Jan Ingram, Erica Holt, Sheila Pinner and Ann
….and…….Sussex Ladies made a fighting recovery after losing the first game – by beating
Kent 4-3 to take the ladies inter-counties title for the fourth successive year.
In the Final, Sussex lost the first leg, but hit back to make it 3-1. It was then Kent’s turn to
come back and make it 2-3, but when Sheila Pinner opened up with a break of nearly 6000,
victory for Sussex was on its way.
Scores for final (Kent ladies first): S.Moon 3410, Jan Ingram 1510; J.Craddock 900, Gina
Sherratt 7430; H.Foster 2870, Lyn Draper 4970; M.Joyce 2330, Jean Over 4270; P.Marsh
3300, Erica holt 470; K.Sampson 1360, Sheila Pinner 8650; K.Hendley 4260, Ann Richards
On Saturday 29th Nov, Maresfield’s Mandy Harris will represent the county in the All-England
ladies singles championship.
Horsham’s Lyn Draper showed few signs of nerves as she won her match to give Sussex a 5-2
win over Hampshire – and a place in the All-England Inter-counties bar billiards final for the
fifth year running. Sussex were one of four teams in the group play-off at Oxford on Sunday
against Hampshire, Northants and Oxfordshire.
Sussex skipper Doris Cordery had to settle for a 4-3 win over Northants, and they notched up
the same score over Oxford. At this stage Hampshire led with 11 points to Sussex’s 8. After
six games Sussex were 4-2 ahead and had to win the last game to reach the Final. The
Hampshire girl lost her opening break of 1500, and Lyn Draper coasted home 2550-1390.
Horsham’s Linda Turvey won all three games for Sussex and so did Brighton’s Jean Over.
Sussex scores were (Sussex’s first):
(v Northants) J.Over 2280, C.Lett 550; A.Richards 1390, S.Jolley 1630; S.Sampson 870,
P.Ibbotson 2560; M.Harris 3590, C.Penney 900; L.Turvey 2150, J.Roone 1090; L.Draper
890, J.Smith 1700; G.Sherratt 3030, S.Harrison 0.
(v.Oxon) A.Richards 2910, J.Brown 3160; G.Sherratt 2310, D.Godfrey 1590; M.Harris 840,
C.Cooke 4840; L.Turvey 2440, A.Rust 1320; L.Draper 2680, M.Higham 4980; S.Sampson
4240, P.Withey 2710; J.Over 3280, R.Bolton 2150.
(v Hants) S.Sampson 4260, A.Haisleden 1480; J.Over 2940, J.Tovey 2310; M.Harris 2870,
C.Hiatt 2890; A.Richards 2670, C.Briscoe 2060; G.Sherratt 2190, J.Mannell 3140; L.Turvey
1660, J.Garrard 1130; L.Draper 2550, D.Firth 1390.
Later in the season, Sussex men coasted home to win the AEBBA championship 5-2 against
Berkshire at Dunsfold on Sunday but the ladies lost the title they had held for the past four
years to Berkshire 3-4.
Horsham Bar Billiards League’s Lyn Draper, Jackie Spooner and Linda Turvey are members
of the Sussex squad competing in Group A of the All-England ladies inter-counties competition
at Worthing. The winners of the contest, in which teams from Berkshire, Hampshire and
Buckinghamshire are also taking part, meet the winners of the B group in the final at Weybridge
in November. Doris Cordery is the Sussex non-playing captain, and the other members of the
squad are Jean Over and Gina Sherratt (Brighton), Mandy Harris and Ros Rees (Lewes), Bernie O’Prey (Mid Sussex) and Dannielle Silver (Worthing)
….and……The women did better than the men in the final of their competition which they drew
with Oxford. But as one of the Oxford players made a very high score, the Oxon aggregate was
greater than Sussex’s and so they had to be content with being runners-up for the second year
A theoretically weak Sussex ladies Bar Billiards side came up trumps in a four-county play-off to
reach the last four in the AEBBA’s inter-county competition. Missing four regulars, and drafting
in the non-playing captain Doris Cordery (Horsham league), Sussex gained 17 points to tie with
Surrey – but went through on a vastly-superior scoring average.
The outstanding performance came from Ros Rees (Lewes league) who won all her four games.
The rest of the team was Margaret Coble (Billingshurst League), Gina Sherratt (Brighton),
“Bernie” O’Prey (Mid Sussex), Jean Over (Brighton) and Jackie Spooner (Horsham). They now
go on to the final at the Emma Hotel, Maidstone, in Kent on Sunday, October 30. The men’s
team will play their group play-off on Saturday, October 15 at the Royal Earlswood Hospital
Fine performances from Horsham players secured the Sussex bar billiards team’s passage into
the All-England Inter-counties competition final recently.
At High Wycombe, the men’s team, playing in a group of three counties in a playoff, won both
matches they played. They beat Hertfordshire and Cambridgeshire by five games to two.
Horsham’s John Slee was in fine form with scors of 13810 and 12760, and Tony Franks and
Terry Race (Brighton) each recorded scores of over 10,000.
At the final stage of the women’s equivalent competition at Worthing, Sussex beat Oxfordshire
4-3 and whitewashed Hampshire. The team then beat Surrey 6-1. They won the event, with
Jackie Spooner victorious in all three games.
While Tony Franks was going through his paces, at High Wycombe, winning the All-England Individual title, Jean Over from the Albion Inn, Brighton, took the ladies AEBBA title, to make it a double for Sussex
The final stages of the AEBBA’s Inter-counties competitions were held at Maidstone on Sunday -
with Sussex represented in both the ladies and mens competitions. With the men’s team
finishing third in their three-team play-off it was left to the ladies to earn some glory for Sussex….
Their first match in the semi-final of the competition was against the reigning champions,
Oxfordshire, and they fully avenged their narrow defeat in last year’s final, beating them by five
games to two.
In the final, Sussex’s ladies played Kent, who had disposed of Surrey in their semi-final. This
match turned out to be an absorbing thriller, with the spectators getting more excited and noisier
as each of the two teams fought to establish mastery over the other. But neither was successful
until the final game, as after each of the three pairs of games, they were level at 1-1, 2-2 and 3-3.
When the players went to the table for the final and deciding frame, the tension was tremendous,
with spectators cheering first for one player, then for the other ! Whilst this encouragement was
welcome, it did tend to increase the pressure on the players and the Sussex player appeared to
be more affected by it than her opponent, who went on to win after a tremendous tussle to give
her team victory by four games to three.
Outstanding performance of the day was from Horsham’s Jackie Spooner. Playing in the final of
the ladies competition, she made a personal best-ever score of 9040, which included a break of
6300, winning for herself a trophy for the highest break of the day.
Playing in the finals of the All-England Bar Billiards Association’s inter-counties competition, the
Sussex ladies team narrowly failed to retain the trophy they won last year. Oxfordshire were
adjudged winners, having the highest total score in their two matches. The only player in the
Sussex side with a 100% record was Sheila Pinner of Worthing. Her teammates were Margaret
Coble (Billingshurst), Kim Hart (Hastings) Jackie Spooner (Horsham), Sandra Alderson and Jean Over (Brighton) Ros Rees (Mid Sussex) and Gina Sherratt (Worthing/Brighton).
The ladies county side was weakened by several absences, but the six-strong team were runners-up
in the seven-a-side tournament. They lost both matches but came second on the number of games
won. Surrey were the eventual winners.
Newly-promoted Sussex Ladies completed their rise through the ranks by winning the County
Championships. Although missing key players, including Horsham’s Sue Loughran, they remained
unbeaten to pip Surrey to the title. A full record of the Inter-Counties Ladies 1990-onwards -
including mention of Sue Loughran - can be seen by viewing the Timeline (p6) at the top of this page.