Stephen Merrien Memorial Handicap Open (posted 04/01/19)

The Stephen Merrien Handicap Open will soon be with us for a fourth time, and we are pleased to announce that it will again be held at the Ex-Service Club this year.

Details of the event are as follows:

Date: 26th - 27th January 2019
Ex-Service Club, Victoria Road
Best of 3 frames until Final (best of 5), using current GB&SA handicaps
Entry fee:
£5 per player (Prize money available, plus donation to charity)
Max no. entrants:
64 (first come, first served)

Given that this is a handicap format, we expect that there will again be a high number of entries, which means that the event will be held over two days.

To make it easier for players' availability, the draw will be made one week in advance of the event, and players will be given time slots of their matches for the Saturday. The last 16 onwards will be played on the Sunday.

Please note that it is a condition of entry that players who lose their match will referee the following match on their table (with the exception of the final frames on each table on Saturday night). Failure to do this may result in players being prevented from entering future events.

Please confirm your interest in this tournament either through Facebook or by sending an email to [email protected] by no later than Sunday 20th January 2019.


Desperques powers to Shootout title with two tons (posted 26/11/18)

The fifth staging of the Wired Electrical Contractors Snooker Shootout will live long in the memory, with Martyn Desperques producing an unbeatable display throughout.

In becoming the champion of the ten-minute per frame snooker event again, Desperques was brilliant in hitting two century breaks on the way to a final success against the relatively unknown surprise package, Ben Smith.

A clearance of 103 against Connor Granville was the first century break ever seen in the Shootout, but Desperques soon surpassed it with another clearance – this time a magnificent 108 to end Steve Le Poidevin’s great run to the semi finals.

Whilst Desperques was writing the record books, another story was developing with the first sighting of Ben Smith. Adam Shorto witnessed Smith’s much talked about ability first hand as he was comprehensively knocked out by breaks of 27 and 32, which included Smith remarkably potting three reds in a single shot.

Smith booked his place in the final with a break of 32 to defeat Charlie Browning, and actually got in first against Desperques. But given the mood that the defending champion was in, Desperques only needed a sniff of a chance, and when Smith made a mistake, he was duly punished with a break of 47 that looked at one stage like being Desperques’ third ton. That proved to finally be the point of no return for Smith, and just a few shots later, Desperques crowned a difficult week personally to lift the quickfire trophy for a record third time.

Three Island Champions in action at the Gremlin, featuring Glenn Le Prevost (near table), Adam Shorto, (middle table) and Martyn Desperques (far table)


Martyn Desperques - three-time Shootout champion with President Ian Le Maitre


Le Prevost / Shorto win Scotch Doubles as Desperques / Hughes hit century break (posted 27/01/18)

Four time Pairs champions Glenn Le Prevost and Adam Shorto beat Martyn Desperques and Darren Hughes to win the second Scotch Doubles handicap snooker tournament, but there was ample consolation for the losing pair with a remarkable century.

A high quality final between the four most outstanding players was the only match to go the full three frames, and included a break of 56 for the champions in the only frame they lost.

Earlier on, Desperques and Hughes combined in the alternative shot format event to post a 100 clearance against Clayton Le Noury and Dave Bullock, with Hughes tasked to pot the final black.


Guernsey overpowers Jersey to reclaim snooker inter insular (posted 29/04/18)

The Lieut-Col R W Randall Challenge Cup is back on Guernsey soil, following a 16-9 win at the Gremlin Club. It was a victory inspired by Martyn Desperques, who won all his five frames, whilst Glenn Le Prevost added four having completed last year's match empty handed.

Desperques struck first with a 59 to beat Guy Heys, but Le Prevost suffered his only reverse when Gary Britton stole the second frame with a 27 clearance. Darren Hughes - another to have endured a blank return on his only inter insular appearance under the new format - comfortably beat Ross Symes, but John Skillett was surprisingly beaten by Tony Le Poidevin.

That made it 2-2, but by the end of the afternoon session Guernsey held a two frame advantage at 8-6. Desperques and Adam Shorto made breaks of 58 and 50 in contributing four of the six added frames, whilst Le Prevost beat World Seniors champion Aaron Canavan 74-26 in the first of his two afternoon wins.

The start of the evening session was largely one way traffic with the same three players winning their frames, whilst Skillett put a disappointing afternoon behind him to strike a brilliant 73. His high break was soon surpassed though, with Britton, who previously had the best with a 66 clearance, taking out Shorto thanks to an 82.

Britton and Canavan were doing their best to keep Jersey in the hunt, but defeat came in the 21st frame when Le Prevost beat Heys. The conclusion of the match served up one more helping of Desperques v Britton to add to the two CI finals they had contested, with the Jerseyman getting in first thanks to a 37. Desperques was in determined mood though, and having clawed back most of the deficit with a 32, he then finished the inter insular series off with a fine 60 to pink.

 Full results sheet here.

Guernsey's victorious side (from l to r): Glenn Le Prevost, John Skillett, Adam Shorto (capt); Martyn Desperques, Darren Hughes

Adam Shorto prepares to launch the celebrations

Desperques on his way to victory against Canavan, with Shorto v Britton in the background


Jersey's Britton gains revenge in CI billiards final (posted 27/04/18)

After losing out in the CI snooker final in Jersey, Gary Britton gained his revenge on Martyn Desperques to win the CI billiards title for a sixth time. It was a second successive defeat for Guernsey's champion in this final, but he couldn't have wished for a better start by making a century break at just his third visit.

Britton's reply to Desperques' 104 was emphatic though, and consecutive breaks of 64 and 139 put him in the driving seat. Soon after, Desperques was trailing by over 120 points, but breaks of 33 and 41 helped him get back to a deficit of just 24. At that point, Britton struck a decisive blow with his second ton of the match. A break of 108 stretched his advantage again, before running out with a 42 to win 500-365 in under two hours.


Martyn Desperques 365,   Gary Britton 500

Breaks: G. Britton 139, 108, 64, 42u; M. Desperques 104, 42, 41, 33



Jersey's Gary Britton receives CI billiards trophy from GB&SA President Ian Le Maitre


Jersey secure comfortable billiards success (posted 22/04/18)

Guernsey suffered their first inter insular reverse when Jersey convincingly won 4-1 in the team billiards. It was always going to be an uphill struggle given Jersey's greater billiards participation, and a rapid early win for Gary Britton didn't help. Guernsey's best, Martyn Desperques, was powerless as Britton made breaks of 50, 51 and 75 to win in just 45 minutes.

It's been nine years since Darren Hughes played billiards, but he was only narrowly edged out by 16 points to Peter Allen, and Jersey soon confirmed victory through Martyn Le Gallais. Guernsey found some success at the end though, with Adrian Holley netting a fine 250-209 win against the vastly more experienced Richard De La Haye.


Jersey 4, Guernsey 1

Gary Britton 250,   Martyn Desperques 87

Peter Allen 250,   Darren Hughes 234

Martyn Le Gallais 250,   Steve Le Poidevin 144

Guy Heys 250,   Ian Le Maitre 187

Richard De La Haye 209,   Adrian Holley 250


Sledgehammers complete treble with Upton success (posted 22/04/18)

Having won the Premier Division and Team Straight knockout double, the Sledgehammers defeated a respresentative Tower side 9-3 to add the Upton Trophy. The lack of a team straight league in Jersey meant the Casereans opted to pick their strongest four players from their second tier individual league, and they enjoyed early success with James Martin's 22 clearance.

Danny Marquand also dropped an early frame, but gradually the Sledgehammers' superiority shone through to take a 4-2 half time lead. There was to be only one second half blip as Glenn Le Prevost became the third player to win 2-1, whilst John Skillett took all three frames.


Tower 3, The Sledgehammers 9

James Martin 1,   Adam Shorto 2

Nathan Piziura 1,   Danny Marquand 2

Steve Morgan 0,   John Skillett 3

Daniel Cavey 1,   Glenn Skillett 2

Victorious Sledgehammers (l to r): Glenn Le Prevost, Danny Marquand, Adam Shorto, John Skillett


Desperques gets Guernsey off to winning start (posted 20/04/18)

Martyn Desperques beat Gary Britton 5-2 in the C.I. snooker final at the First Tower snooker club in Jersey, to regain the trophy he last held back in 2009. It's the perfect start for Guernsey in the first of five inter insular matches and, on a personal note for Desperques, brings a welcome end to a run of four runner ups.

It didn't bode well for Desperques when Britton won the first with a break of 93, but he went into the interval 3-1 up thanks to two clearances and a 51. Having extended his lead further on the resumption following a break of 38, a brilliant 138 total clearance from the Jersey champion threatened a comeback. But the winning line came in the next when Desperques took the pink with Britton needing a snooker.


Gary Britton 2, Martyn Desperques 5

Frame scores: (93) 104-14; (36) 53-65 (22c); (32) 59-67 (40, 25c); 38-66 (51); 1-67 (38); (138c) 138-0; 36-59


 Five time CI Snooker Champion, Martyn Desperques


Le Gallez crowned first Ladies Island champion since 2008 (posted 20/04/18)

After a break of ten years where insufficient players has meant no competition could be run, Kate Le Gallez took the honours 3-1 against Yvonne Bogue to win the Ladies Island Snooker Championship.

Le Gallez has been the stand out player of the newly formed NSC Ladies team, and went into the final as favourite - but she was made to work hard for her success that sees her double up as current Island Snooker and Pool champion.

Bogue looked set to take the lead when a break of 17 built her a 20 plus points advantage, but Le Gallez settled to take it on the pink. The second proved much more comfortable for Le Gallez, but Bogue's safety and potting were rewarded with a deserved third frame.

The fourth frame proved to be the last, with Le Gallez initially in full flow to make a 20 break, but Bogue battled back to take it to the final colours. An exchange on the pink saw both players miss chances before Le Gallez made the pot that clinched a trophy in her first snooker season.

Kate Le Gallez receives the Ladies Island Snooker Championship trophy from GB&SA Secretary Paul Le Sauvage


Jim Wilson wins delayed Stephen Merrien Handicap Open (posted (26/03/18)

Four players returned to the Ex-Service to play the semi-finals and final of the Stephen Merrien Handicap Open, which couldn't be completed in time - and it was Jim Wilson who ended up reigning supreme.

Having beaten Colin Gilbert in his semi, Wilson played Kane De Carteret who had won by the same score against Bill Smith. Wilson took the opener, but De Carteret comprehensively won the second frame to force a decider. There was no denying Wilson though, as he won 65-43.

Jim Wilson gladly receives the Stephen Merrien Trophy


Desperques wins first Island final to go full nine frames (posted 24/03/18)

Martyn Desperques showed what he’s about by winning the 83rd Island Snooker Championship final at the Gremlin Club, despite being largely outplayed by Adam Shorto. Desperques won the last three frames to win 5-4 for his ninth title – just three behind the great Norman Wale.

If the result was to be decided by statistics, Shorto would be a comfortable winner having scored over 100 points more, potting 22 more balls and enjoying the greater pot success rate. The one stat that Desperques prospered in was safety success, and it was this often overseen part of his game that he increasingly turned to, and which proved pivotal in winning the final frame.

With two reds left in the decider, Desperques opted against a pot to lay a devilish snooker that incurred four fouls and misses, and when Shorto did eventually connect, he left a red on for Desperques to clear to pink with a break of 32.

Before that, Shorto took a 2-0 lead with a 56 clearance and Desperques could muster no more than a break of 21 to reduce the deficit, but he did sparkle in the last frame before the break with a 71. On the resumption, Shorto looked to be coasting to victory by winning the next two with a 60 and 77 clearance, but was ultimately to rue the further opportunities he had to win the match. Breaks of 34 and 40 brought Desperques level before a tense final frame in front of the largest audience a final has seen for many a year.

Desperques will bid for a fifth CI title when he plays the Jersey champion on 20th April, in Jersey.


Adam Shorto 4, Martyn Desperques 5

Frame scores: 65-23; 103-13; 28-48; 0-71; 90-10; 102-15; 33-73; 35-64; 41-85

Breaks: A. Shorto 77c, 60, 56c.  M. Desperques 71, 40, 34, 32

Balls potted: 144-122

Pot success rate: 86%-77%

Safety success rate: 64%-85%


Comeback king Desperques takes Island Championship for a ninth time


Adam Shorto ponders his next shot in front of a sizeable Gremlin crowd


North Social proves Open hit - especially for Desperques (posted 06/03/18)

New venue, familiar winner. For the first time since it began back in 2008, the Imperium Trust Guernsey Snooker Open was held at a different club, with the North Social playing host to 32 players from across all divisions. But whilst the new surroundings provided a vibrant atmosphere and the benefit of an extra table, it didn’t stop Martyn Desperques lifting the trophy for a record fifth time.

Put quite simply, Desperques was unstoppable, as he won all five matches without dropping a frame, and which included a brilliant 122 break on one of the least favoured tables. Only a miss on the final black prevented Desperques from matching Adam Shorto’s season high.

Desperques’ fourth ton of the season came at the quarter final stage in ending Glenn Le Prevost’s hopes, and there was more to come in the semi as he defeated Adrian Holley with a break of 86. The open draw spread the higher ranked players around this year, and most people’s money was on another Desperques v Shorto final. But a visibly pumped John Skillett had other ideas, by coming from 2-1 down to deny Shorto the chance of becoming the first player to successfully defend the Open title.

Surprisingly, this was only the second major final for Skillett, and again he had to settle for the runner up spot - but not before providing the shot of the tournament that so nearly gave him a lifeline. Already two frames down and having recovered from Desperques’ early 40 break in the third, a scintillating blue gained Skillett perfect position on the pink followed by a tough black. A miss to the centre pocket proved to be Skillett’s last shot, much to the disappointment of a healthy crowd that wanted to see more, but there was no doubting that Desperques deserved his success.

Earlier on in the tournament, there were few shocks as the formbook largely held the upper hand, but a strong showing of North Social players raised some eyebrows in the first round. Antony Makepeace sounded the first alarm bell by storming to the first frame against Shorto, before the Island captain responded with breaks of 69 and 47, and Ian Eggo came within a black of beating Graham Peel 2-1 – only to wobble it in the jaws of the pocket.

Kate Le Gallez became the first female entrant and showed her growing stature by pushing Tristan Ozanne to the final colours of a deciding frame, whilst Paul Regan and Neil McFadyen both defeated higher ranked opposition without dropping a frame.

Record fifth Open for Desperques, presented by GB&SA President Ian Le Maitre


Desperques wins second trophy of season (posted 28/01/18)

Martyn Desperques withstood Glenn Le Prevost’s early pressure to lift the Peter Colley Shield for an eighth time, and put his name on the second of three trophies played for this season. Having already won the Snooker Shootout, Desperques came through the Gremlin final 5-3 in a little over two hours play. Le Prevost, appearing in his first Individual League final, settled well enough to win two of the opening three frames, but Desperques’ weight of scoring was ultimately just too much to bear.

The early signs were there for Le Prevost when Desperques took the second frame with a break of 91 that should have been a century, but a one-sided third re-established his advantage. Le Prevost couldn’t hold on going into the interval though, and when Desperques resumed with a break of 70 to lead for the first time, one sensed the remaining frames could go by in a flash.

Those feelings initially increased in the next as Desperques looked set to build on his momentum, but a classy 35 clearance to make it 3-3 on the black was Le Prevost’s best moment. It proved to be pretty much his last moment too as Desperques punished the wilting left hander with breaks of 32 and 51 to clinch a title that only he and Adam Shorto has won in its’ eleven years existence.


Glenn Le Prevost 3, Martyn Desperques 5

Frame scores: 64-41; 1-99; 82-1; 38-65; 24-83; 59-53; 7-66; 5-106

Breaks: M. Desperques 91, 70, 51, 36, 32. G. Le Prevost 38, 35c

Balls potted: 78-147

Pot success rate: 78%-88%

Safety success rate: 67%-79%


Martyn Desperques receives the Peter Colley shield from the former GB&SA President