WEBSF Gold Series Event 1 Winner - 2019-20

Spirited Mears Holds On to Double Up

Ryan Mears became the first player for over five-and-a-half-years to claim consecutive WEBSF Gold Series event titles following his comeback victory last weekend in Torquay.

Familiar tour stop Galaxy TQ was the host for the second event of this season’s prestigious series, as 28 players from across the region and beyond lined up for the honours and a slice of the 100% entries in prize fund.

The Groups

In a tight finish to Group A, local cueist James Lee and Darran Lock both qualified after each winning four out of six matches. 

Going into the final round of fixtures there were several permutations still possible. This season’s West of England Open Snooker finalist Lee topped the pool despite losing his final game to Alex Mucklow and Lock only went through after seeing Huw Carpenter lose to James Height in a deciding frame. Height and Mucklow also ended on four wins apiece, although Carpenter – who bagged three wins – achieved third spot due to frames won and then frame difference. An effort of 88 from Height enabled him to pocket the non-qualifier highest break prize. 

Continuing the good form from his maiden tour triumph at Jesters Snooker Hall in Swindon last month, Mears headed Group B, dropping just one frame in the process and making a 119 break; at the time, the tournament benchmark. 

He was joined in the last eight by former Gold Series champion Greg Batten. Batten, who has only just made his return to competitive action this campaign, proved correct the adage that ‘class is permanent’ when he conjured up a 135 total clearance, the highest break of the day, during his progress in second place with five wins. 

Haydon Pinhey was irresistible in topping Group C, winning all six of his fixtures 2-0. The Plymouth potter made his intentions clear early on, registering the first ton of the day with exactly 100 in his opening match.  

Wales’ Andy Rogers – a former Gold Series event winner in the past – made the trip to South Devon worth his while as he advanced to the quarter-finals in second. 

Another Plymouth baizeman in Chris Coumbe won Group D, and he was joined on five wins by Chay Mearns who came second having taken one less frame than Chris. 

Finalists Ryan Mears and Darran Lock with tournament referee Nick Harry

The Knockouts

Rogers eliminated Lee 2-0, while Mears chalked up runs of 63 and 79 in dispatching Mearns by the same scoreline. Lock, who said he was fortunate to get through the groups, ousted Pinhey 2-1 on the colours, despite his opponent fashioning an 85 break to take the tie to a third frame. Batten received a walkover after Coumbe withdrew from the competition (Chris was OK, by the way!) 

Mears ended the hopes of Rogers in the semi-finals 2-0 and after being taken to a final frame, Cornishman Lock once again held his nerve there to deny Batten a return to the winner’s circle. 

WEBSF tournament stalwart Lock was aiming for a deserved, first gold event title, and it looked as if it was coming when he went 1-0 up and was carefully minding his work in frame two. However, in getting to the position of requiring just one further ball to leave his opponent needing penalty points, Lock failed at a couple of attempted pots. Plucky Mears remained ‘hang tough’ and compiled a gutsy 35 clearance to force a decider. 

Having come so agonisingly close in the previous frame, it appeared difficult for Lock to gain any momentum in the third. In what was a scrappy frame, Aldershot star Mears held the advantage pretty much throughout, eventually getting across the line to emulate Andy Neck who last collected back-to-back Gold Waistcoat/Series events towards the start of 2014. Mears also had the satisfaction of being the last WEBSF snooker event winner of the decade. 

Event three of the 2019/2020 series takes place on Saturday January 4th, 2020 at Top Q Snooker Club in Gloucester. Entry is open, although spaces are limited. For information on the event and how to enter, please see here.

Gold Series Event 1 Winner 2019-20

Mears Marks Opening Gold Event Success

Ryan Mears got his 2019/20 West of England Billiards and Snooker Foundation Gold Series campaign off to a perfect start when he claimed the event one title at Jesters Snooker Hall last Saturday. 

Top amateur players from across the south-west region and further afield made their way to Swindon to break off the 16th consecutive edition of the prestigious series. With the overall end-of-season champion decided by a ranking list, hopefuls were keen to build an early platform from the first of five events. 

The Groups

Having only recently returned from Melbourne, Australia where he reached the knockout phase of the 2019 World Billiards Championship, Mears qualified top from Group A with four wins out of five. Joining him in the last eight was record three-time Gold Series champion Andy Neck who came second, just behind on frame difference. Elsewhere in the group, debutant Huw Carpenter adapted to the new environment well as he finished third, and there was a warm reception for 2008 champion Greg Batten, making his long-awaited return to the WEBSF scene.

Former winner Haydon Pinhey was one of two players to end the groups stage with a 100% record; highlighting breaks of 85, 93 and 104 in leading Group B. Reigning Gold Series Champion Alan Tunney advanced through in second place with his only loss coming at the hands of Pinhey. Steve Brookshaw and Chris Coumbe – like Mears, had both just come back from ‘Down Under’ after making the KOs of Billiards’ biggest event – came fourth and fifth respectively. 

Current Gold Masters Champion Andy Symons was in scintillating form in Group C, chalking up six wins out of six and producing a fantastic total clearance of 138 during his opening match against Connor Benzey. The break represents one of the highest ever made in the history of the competition. Symons, a two-time event winner last season too, also crafted a 115. Gold newcomer Alex Mucklow chalked up a trio of half-centuries as he qualified in second during a fine introductory showing.

There was a thrilling finish in Group D, with qualification going down to the final frame. Last month’s West of England Snooker Open finalist James Lee won the pool with five wins, whilst youngster Aidan Murphy’s 2-1 victory over Steven Hughes in the last remaining match of the groups saw him squeeze into second courtesy of head-to-head with Hughes. Like Murphy and Hughes, Peter Bicknell also registered four wins in a tight outcome. 

The Knockouts

All four group winners triumphed in the quarter-finals with Mears, Pinhey, Symons and Lee eliminating Mucklow, Murphy, Neck and Tunney respectively – Mears and Symons coming through in deciding frames. 

Aldershot’s Mears was the first to book his berth in the final after a 2-0 semi-final success over Pinhey, whilst an exciting third and final frame was needed to separate Symons and Lee, with the former controlling the latter stages and ousting it. 

In a breathtaking final, an inspired Mears quickly took a 1-0 lead and was heading towards the finish line when he was in the balls first during the next frame. Symons managed to counter, though, and looking flawless on a break of 63 it seemed as if a decider was on the way. However, an unexpected miss on what would have effectively been frame ball red allowed Mears a chance for glory. It was an opportunity he expertly and coolly seized in one visit, clearing up the last two reds and colours, including a tricky black to the left-middle after not getting perfect position on it from the pink. A great advert for the WEBSF circuit with a nice sized crowd watching on. 

A double champion at last season’s West of England Snooker and Billiards Opens, this was multi-talented Mears’ maiden gold event title in his first final. 

Event Two takes place at the Galaxy Centre, Torquay on the 23rd November. Entries into this event are now open via a link HERE, although spaces are limited.

Gold Series Overall Winner 2018-19

2019/20 WEBSF Gold Series Event One | PREVIEW

Top amateur cueists from across the south-west region and beyond will line up for the start of the 16th West of England Billiards and Snooker Foundation Gold Series this Saturday. 

The curtain-raiser to this prestigious five-event series will be hosted by Jesters Snooker Hall in Swindon, which had tables re-clothed earlier this week in preparation for the tournament. 

Every year since 2004, the Gold Series – originally born as the Gold Waistcoat Series -has been the Foundation’s premier accolade. Only ten players have claimed the coveted title, including current main tour professional and two-time Crucible Theatre qualifier Sam Baird. 

Jesters Snooker Hall in Swindon hosts event one of the 2019/20 WEBSF Gold Series

This season’s likely contenders 

Alan Tunney is the reigning Gold Series champion after he finished top of the 2018/19 rankings; securing the title for the first time. Torquay based Tunney – winner of an event and a finalist in another during his successful campaign, will be present in Swindon, as he aims to become just the second person to defend the trophy. 

That particular honour was achieved by Andy Neck, who also holds the record for the most overall titles following successes in 2012, 2013 and 2018. Haydon Pinhey – conqueror in 2016 and a two-time Gold Masters victor – and 2008 king Greg Batten – making his long-awaited return to the WEBSF scene – are the other former champions in the field this weekend. 

Former English Amateur Championship finalist Andy Symons has enjoyed a superb spell over the past 12 months, collecting the end of season Gold Masters invitational and two Gold Series events. Symons, who was pipped to the overall number one spot by Tunney, will be hoping for a repeat of last term where he took away the spoils from the opening event. 

Among the other likely contenders to feature in the latter stages of competitions in 2019/20 include promising teenagers Connor Benzey and Aidan Murphy. Benzey set the record for being the youngest ever Gold Series event finalist last season, only for that to be trumped by Murphy, a back-to-back runner-up in events four and five. 

Having only just returned home from Melbourne, Australia earlier this week where they all qualified for the knockout stages of the 2019 World Billiards Championship, Chris Coumbe, Steve Brookshaw and Ryan Mears will switch back to the snooker discipline. Both the latter two each won a snooker and billiards title on the circuit last season – Brookshaw tasted glory at Gold Series Event Two and the Billiards Open, while Mears uniquely completed the West of England Open double. Runner-up at last month’s West of England Snooker Open, James Lee will be looking to go one better at the same Jesters venue. 

For up-to-date coverage of all the action from Gold Series Event One this Saturday, please visit our Facebook and Twitter social media pages. 

Coaching, Competitions, Community | WEBSF celebrates 15 years of providing Billiards and Snooker for all

On September 25th 2004, the West of England Billiards and Snooker Foundation was born. An official launch day was held at the Victoria Snooker Centre in Plymouth, hosted by WEBSF Patron and six-time world professional snooker champion Ray Reardon MBE.

A not-for-profit community group run by a small band of passionate and dedicated volunteers, the Foundation had a vision to encourage participation in grassroots billiards and snooker, providing opportunities into these wonderful sports for all, regardless of age, ability or location within the West of England. 

Despite difficult economic times and trying logistical issues, these goals throughout the past 15 years have been achieved. Maintaining a sustainable model, the organisation is stronger today than it has ever been, as it continues to help those who may otherwise have been unable to realise and develop their potential within the sports.

Coaching, competitions, community. Let’s look back at some of the images from the last 15 years…..

WESBF Patron and six-time world professional snooker champion Ray Reardon MBE hosted the launch day in September 2004 at the Victoria Snooker Centre in Plymouth.

The WEBSF have provided countless community and group coaching sessions in safe venues and environments across the West of England. Priding themselves to facilitate personal improvement through coaching, their unique, bespoke certified assessment scheme allows students to track and evaluate their progress.

Structured, tailor-made one-to-one coaching (and ecoaching) sessions have also been in demand. These too have remained accessable and affordable for all.

The foundation has already held over 200 tournaments, catering for players of all levels and ages, many of whom were making their first steps into tournament action. The flagship Gold Series has remained a constant throughout the 15 years – featuring several former and future professional players. In total, over 9,500 matches and 55,000 frames have been completed so far. This season, 100% of all entry fees will be awarded out straight away as prize money – nearly £60,000 has been paid out to date since 2004.
The WEBSF has helped over 750 different cueists find their competitive edge.

In more recent times the invitational Gold Masters Championship has been held for the best performing players from that season’s Gold Series.

The WEBSF Ladies Open has been a permanent annual fixture on the tournament calendar, and there is an exciting rebranding of the event on the horizon!

Serious about the three-ball sport too, two tournaments per year are hosted – the English Billiards Open and the West of England English Billiards Open

One of the WEBSF’s most publicised successes has been the rise of established professional player Sam Baird; a two-time World Championship Crucible qualifier. The Silver and Gold Series’ helped aid Baird’s snooker education and development.

A platform for gaining new skills, the WEBSF continues to create volunteer opportunities and pathways for a wide range of roles – no experience is neccessary and no barriers to personal development can’t be overcome!
Passion and volunteering have always been the heartbeat of the Foundation.

The West of England Billiards and Snooker Foundation – Billiards and Snooker for all. Here’s to the next 15 years and beyond!

2019/20 WEBSF Tournament Calendar Announcement

The West of England Billiards and Snooker Foundation (WEBSF) is proud to announce its tournament calendar for the upcoming 2019/20 season. 

Since 2004 we have remained true to our ethos of providing a series of affordable, worthwhile and trusted one-day competitions held in the West of England that are open to players of all ages and abilities. 

The WEBSF circuit has featured several future main-tour professionals in its ranks over the last few years; Sam Baird, Eden Sharav, Billy Joe Castle, Harvey Chandler, Ian Preece and Jackson Page. These star names competed alongside fellow top amateurs and rising talents in a portfolio of flagship tournaments. 

During a season in which we will be celebrating our 15th anniversary, both the annual West of England Snooker Open and the five-event Gold Series will return. As too will the lucrative Gold Masters; an invitational, only open to the top 16 ranked players from this campaign’s Gold Series.  

The curtain-raising West of England Snooker Open will take place on Saturday 7th September. Entries for this event will be open this Saturday 10th August at 09.00. Spaces are limited for all WEBSF events, so please secure your entry as soon as possible to avoid disappointment. Entry for each event will be made open at a certain time, please check either the website or our social media channels for regular updates. 

2019 West of England Snooker Open entry details

Once again, we will also host a duo of English Billiards events – the Billiards Open and the West of England Billiards Open, whilst we are very excited to stage a new competition for female players – the Carpenter Snooker Tournament. Further details about this new concept will be delivered in due course. 

All tournaments throughout the season will be run on a 100% pay out basis. All entry fees that come in, will go out again as prize money. 


2019/20 WEBSF Tournaments 


Saturday 7th September 2019
West of England Snooker Open, Jesters Snooker Hall, Swindon

Saturday 19th October 2019
The Gold Series event one, Jesters Snooker Hall, Swindon 

Saturday 23rd November 2019 
The Gold Series event two, Galaxy TQ, Torquay

Saturday 30th November 2019
The Billiards Open, Frames Snooker & Pool, Weston-super-Mare 

Saturday 4th January 2020
The Gold Series event three, Top Q Snooker Club, Gloucester

Saturday 8th February 2020 
The Gold Series event four, Frames Snooker & Pool, Weston-super-Mare

Saturday 22nd February 2020
West of England English Billiards Open, Jesters Snooker Club, Swindon 

Saturday 7th March 2020 
The Gold Series event five, Top Q Snooker Club, Gloucester

Saturday 4th April 2020
The Gold Masters (Invitational Event), Frames Snooker & Pool, Weston-super-Mare 

Saturday 2nd May 2020
The Carpenter snooker tournament for female players, Jesters Snooker Club, Swindon 

(All dates and venues are subject to change in certain circumstances)

Sponsorship and partnership opportunities are available for either a series of our events, or on an individual basis.

If you would like to learn more about the benefits of supporting our not-for-profit organisation, please contact us.

Last call for Gold Series Event 2

REGISTRATION IS OPEN!!

Still a few places available for those that want a full day of quality amateur snooker. Find out more about The Gold Snooker Series. Get involved as a player, volunteer or spectator.

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Serving the Community since 2004

The Gold Snooker Series 2017/18

REGISTRATION IS OPEN FOR EVENT 4

Jesters Snooker Hall, Swindon – 17th February 2018

Places limited to 32 – first come first served, payment secures your place!!

Find out more about The Gold Snooker Series. Get involved as a player, volunteer or spectator.

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Symons Wins the ‘Battle of the Best’

Gold Series Event 2 Andy Symons - Winner 2017-18

Andy Symons came through one of the toughest groups ever in event two of the WEBSF Gold Snooker Series 2017-18.

Full results can be found by going to and scrolling down the Gold Snooker Series Page

Find out more about entering the  The Gold Snooker Seriesor get involved as a player, volunteer or spectator.

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Benzey ‘Totally Rewarded’ at Special Event

Bronze Snooker Open Winner - Connor Benzey with Tournament Sponsor 2017-18
Bronze Snooker Open Winner – Connor Benzey with Tournament Sponsor 2017-18

Connor Benzey played solid snooker all day on his way to lifting the 2017 WEBSF Bronze Snooker Open title.

To make a complete day of Billiards & Snooker the WEBSF held Coaching Workshops where WEBSF Coaches and special guests; ex-Professional, Manager & Coach Hassan Vaizie and Snooker Professional Sam Baird gave masterclasses in break building and coaching clinics.

Go to Bronze Open 2017 to find out more