AMESBURY teenager James Bolton is the inaugural under-21 champion of the Cuestars South Wilts Snooker League.
The 19-year-old clinched the junior title with two games in hand following a 5-0 victory over Ally Pollard (Alderholt, near Fordingbridge) at Salisbury Snooker Club.
Bolton is now fourth in the ten-man league but can’t be overtaken by youngsters Pollard, 17, Kaine Petty, 15, and Callum McDonald, 14.
Meanwhile, front runner John Hunter (Andover) has extended his lead over Adam Guyatt (Salisbury) to three points.
The defending champion kicked off a 5-0 whitewash of Petty (Fordingbridge) with a 56 break but said his opponent “fought well and shows good promise”.
Guyatt did keep the pressure on by seeing off McDonald (Bishopdown) 4-1.
An “enjoyable” defeat and a “tad flattering” victory kept Richard Arnold (Salisbury) in seventh place.
The 51-year-old took the first frame against Paul Burt (Britford) with a run of 38 and then forced a decider from 2-1 down. But his opponent opened the fifth with a timely 28 and never looked back.
“It was an enjoyable match,” said Arnold. “It ebbed and flowed.”
He also kicked off strongly in a 4-1 victory over Petty. A run of 31 secured what was initially a scrappy frame.
Petty fought back well to level on the final black. Arnold took the third comfortably but was forced to produce what his opponent described as a “great clearance” from green to black to lead 3-1. A 32 break made it 4-1.
“It was a tad flattering, perhaps,” said Arnold. “Kaine was, apart from the last frame, competitive throughout the match and probably deserved more from it.
“As Kaine’s matchplay experience grows, he will clearly enjoy more success.”
Martin Hill (Durrington) consolidated fifth position with a closely-fought 4-1 success against Burt.
Results: John Hunter 5 Kaine Petty 0, James Bolton 5 Ally Pollard 0, Richard Arnold 2 Paul Burt 3, Adam Guyatt 4 Callum McDonald 1, Richard Arnold 4 Kaine Petty 1, Martin Hill 4 Paul Burt 1, Steve Ashton P Martin Hill P.