Lancashire TelegraphSnooker: Blackburn out on top in charity bash (From Lancashire Telegraph)

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Snooker: Blackburn out on top in charity bash

Lancashire Telegraph: The Blackburn team The Blackburn team

Blackburn were comfortable winners of this year's Charity Challenge Snooker Match against Burnley.

The match, held at Blackburn's Longshaw Sports And Social Club attracted a large crowd who were not disappointed.

The opener was a somewhat nervy affair between Ian Harle for Blackburn and Andy Goody representing Burnley.

An out of sorts Harle never really got going and Goody ran out a comfortable winner to put the visitors ahead. Frame 2 saw Craig Steele turn in his usual gutsy performance for Blackburn against the vastly experienced Eric Catlow.

An early run of 30 gave Steele the advantage and Catlow couldn't find a way back, eventually going down 54-17.

The next went the way of the home side also as Dave O'Shaughnessy showed occasional flashes of brilliance to defeat Kev Catlow. Frame 4 was another edgy one but Jonny Hannan, playing on his own table, had too much for Burnley's Josh Stevenson and put the home side 3-1 up.

It was the veterans match next and Pete Drane and Ronnie Laycock, combined age 159, put on a super show for an enthralled crowd. It was Blackburn's Drane who nicked it on the black after Ronnie looked the likely winner.

Blackburn youngster, Scott Morris, was up next and despite some early nerves put up a brave show against Darren McKavett.

The Burnley man had the best of the early exchanges but Morris came back well and was looking in control until a safety shot on the brown took a flier of the back cushion and sat up nicely for McKavett to clear and make the score 4-2. The next frame was a nightmare for Blackburn's George Holden who was in total control and clearing up nicely when he went in off the brown.

Opponent Scott Luke held his nerve and cleared the colours to leave the match finely balanced at 4-3. That was the end of the line for Burnley though as Blackburn went on a 5 frame winning run.

First up was Tommy Hannan who pipped Neil McGovern 40-28 and then Blackburn debutante Dion Holcroft overcame his nerves to defeat Matt Kaley 47-18. Next up was another youngster making his debut for Blackburn and what a debut it was.

Tom Whittle took on Burnley's Geoff Hillam and after Hillam broke off he only played one more shot as man of the match Whittle ran in a superb 60 break to clear to brown.

It was a case of like father like son in the next as Tom's dad Lee turned in a stunning performance to win in two scoring visits, runs of 31 and 40 doing the damage. The last frame of the day was Gaz Hampson for Blackburn taking on Paul Atherton in a game that never really took off. Hampson took the frame 55-6 to make the final score Blackburn 9 - Burnley 3.

The real winners though were the East Lancashire Hospice. The event raised £300 for the Hospice thanks to the overwhelming generosity of everyone in attendance. Burnley Snooker League and Blackburn With Darwen Snooker League both donated £50 on the day as did Burnley's Paradise Club and Ighten Leigh Club. Organisers Shaun Pendlebury and Neil McGovern were full of praise for the Bryan St venue.

He said: “I can’t thank Longshaw Sports And Social Club enough for the way they have hosted the event. Everything has been perfect. Sean Hammett and his team are to be commended.”

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