GOSPORT snooker ace Mark Lloyd hailed Portsmouth league legend Colin Norton as his “saviour” after winning his first tournament on the national under-21 circuit.
The 18-year-old ran into tip problems the day before his trip to the North East Derbyshire Snooker Centre, Clay Cross.
But Norton rode to the rescue and replaced the tip with which Lloyd had made his first 147 break in September.
And Dave Norman agreed to open Stoke Snooker Club two hours early to allow the former English Under-18 Champion to break the tip in before heading to the venue.
Lloyd said: “I would like to thank Colin Norton for being a saviour and Dave Norman for opening the club.”
He kicked off the third leg of the EASB Premier Junior Tour with a 76 break to wrap up a 4-2 victory over Sean McAllister (Hartlepool) and followed that with a run of 82 in the last frame of a 4-2 win against Harry Gosney (Yorks).
A 4-1 success against Jed Mann (Hereford) booked Lloyd a date with Walsall-based Jack Harris, whom he had also beaten in the final of the 2015 English Under-16 Championship.
Trailing 3-2, Lloyd claimed his first Premier Tour win with breaks of 68 and 70.
“I had to use my experience to get myself back into the match,” he said.
“I was relieved, more than anything, just to finally get the win under my belt.
“I think my dad (Mike) was more nervous than I was. It was nice to give him something back.”
Picture by Tim Dunkley
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Tim Dunkley (World Snooker coach)