ROYAL Wootton Bassett teenager Riley Ellis jointly leads the Cuestars Under-21 Silver Tour snooker rankings after a hard-fought victory in the third leg in south London earlier this month.
The 17-year-old, from Clyffe Pypard, was forced to battle all day to secure his first winner’s trophy of the season at Frames Sports Bar in Coulsdon.
Ellis, who is based at Chandlers Ford Snooker Club, topped his five-man round-robin group but was really put under the cosh in the knockout.
Up against his nine-year-old club-mate William Thomson, Ellis lost the first frame and survived a re-spotted black in the second before running out a 2-1 winner.
He then overcame bogey player Simon Bubb, the leg-two winner from London, 2-0 in the last-four and beat Samuel Laxton (Portsmouth) 2-0, both on the black, in the final.
It was a long day for Ellis but he was delighted to win such tight matches in the event sponsored by the host club.
“I love playing Samuel,” he said. “He gives me a run for my money on safety play, that’s for sure.
“(Bubb) is a person I struggle to play well against. But I managed to hold my own and fight back.”
And he added: “There’s no easy games in Silver!”
Ellis proved this theory after going down to 15-year-old Will Forster in the fourth leg at Salisbury Snooker Club on Sunday.
Forster, who collected his first winner’s trophy on the regional under-21 circuit after more than five years of trying, came from 1-0 down to beat rankings leader Ellis in the Silver Tour final.
Despite the Clyffe Pypard-teenager’s disappointment, Ellis now has an outright lead in the rankings after knocking out title rival Elliott Johnson 2-0 in the last-four.