IT LOOKS like a three-horse race in the Cuestars South Wilts Snooker League.
Only one point separates the trio who lead the chase for the £100 first prize at Salisbury Snooker Club.
Front-runner Jake Stewart beat Paul Burt 4-1 but Anthony Rice drew level on points after whitewashing Eddie Mason 5-0.
Liam Tinne is one point further back in third after overcoming Stuart Dreyer 4-1.
Stewart and Tinne play this week. Tinne and Rice, who lost to Stewart in November, meet in March.
According to his 14-year-old opponent, Rice compiled an “incredible” 57 break and followed that with a 61 to take the opening two frames.
Mason added: “Throughout the match, I just admired the way he played.”
Rice said: “Eddie chose to play on the tightest table in the club so I was just pleased to score better than anticipated.
“My scoring was quite good on a really tough table to play on.
“Eddie seems keen and interested in the game. He’s a nice lad who conducted himself well.”
Meanwhile, Dreyer lost the first frame against Tinne on the final black and won the fourth with a run of 50.
He said: “Liam played OK, perhaps not to his full potential, and although I lost 4-1, it could have been a lot closer.”
David Rice reckons Callum McDonald deserved his 3-2 victory, particularly for winning a re-spotted black after a “fantastic” colours clearance in the third frame.
And Steve Ashton described his encounter with Antony Foxcroft as “Eddie Charlton versus Terry Griffiths, with a lot less talent”.
Ashton prevailed 4-1 with breaks of 32 and 36.
Results: Liam Tinne 4-1 Stuart Dreyer, Anthony Rice 5-0 Eddie Mason, Callum McDonald 3-2 David Rice, Jake Stewart 4-1 Paul Burt, Steve Ashton 4-1 Antony Foxcroft, Richard Arnold P-P Graham Wallace.
Highest break: Anthony Rice 127
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Tim Dunkley (World Snooker coach)