Britain’s first ever professional 10-ball pool event has finished with Daryl Peach, Jayson Shaw and Phil Burford going home with the spoils from another successful GB9 weekend.
Coming into this event, many tour players were walking into unchartered territory; some had only played the game a handful of times before whilst some had never played a single rack of 10-ball. On the flipside, many of the seasoned professionals GB9 can boast play this game as frequently and as passionately as they play 9-ball. These differing approaches to 10-ball was sure to create a mouth watering tour stop and that is precisely what the weekend produced.
PEACH BEARS THE FRUIT OF HIS LABOURS
Before the start of the Northern Masters final, there was very much a ‘master and apprentice’ feel. A former World 9-Ball Champion in the form of Daryl Peach up against a young hotshot and former Challenge Cup winner in the form of Shaun Storry.
Peach came up against Jamie Yates in his opening match but was in no mood for rest – yates suffered an 8-0 hammering and saw Peach through to the last 32 where he was to meet Damian Massey. Massey narrowly missed out on a Pro Cup final spot earlier in the weekend, and another narrow defeat at the hands of Peach meant it was The Dazzler who went through to the next round 8 racks to 6. Another long time GB9 player in the form of Neil Margossian was the next victim for Peach, with an 8 racks to 3 scoreline enough to put Peach in second main event quarter final of the year. A brilliant match came next against World 9-Ball Team Championship team mate Mark Gray. A hill-hill defeat saw Gray out of the Challenge Cup and the same happened here – three break and runs helped Peach to an 8-7 victory and saw him through to face Arfan Dad in the semi finals. Another tremendous match was in store and, with Dad 4-1 up, a big shock was on the cards. Peach, however, had other ideas – he clung on for all his might before securing an 8 racks to 6 victory to put him in the final.
Storry’s quest for his first main event final berth began in much tougher fashion up against local rival Courtney Symons. He overcame the inaugral Mark Lovell Challenge Cup winner 8 racks to 6. He made much lighter work of Daz Cooper in the following round, however, winning through 8-1 and setting up a last 16 clash with reigning Midlands Classic champion Shaun Chipperfield. He disposed of the Norfolk potter 8 racks to 3 before meeting Louis Clarke in the quarter finals. Clarke up to this point had arguably had his best ever GB9 weekend, but the party was abruptly stopped by Storry. 8-2 was the final score in that match, and Storry made his way into the semi finals to meet Chris Hall. A steady nerve saw him overcome Hall 8 racks to 5 to secure only his second ever GB9 final and his first ever in a main event.
The final itself was just one agonising step too far for Storry on this occasion. Taking a 9-5 lead with some high quality pool, Peach went one better – or five better – and showed why he is a professional. Winning all five of the remaining racks, Peach secured a quite brilliant 10-9 win and took home the gold medal from the first professional 10-ball event to be held in the UK.