2018 UKPT Challenge 4 - Daventry
The Challenge event is generally considered extremely tough to do consistently well in due to its shorter format compared to the tour and the high quality of opponent that you inevitably meet. Shane Thompson is currently single handedly debunking this myth by making the latter stages of all four Challenge events so far this season, such is the quality of the man! Thompson started with a last 16 placing in event 1, before making the final of event 2, he swiftly followed this up with a quarter final placing at event 3 and has now surpassed all of those by taking the title at event 4!
Thompson, a current England International and previous Challenge event winner on two occasions, is well known for his money match exploits, having taken on all comers for big stakes at his home venue of Spenny's Sports Bar in Bridgwater, but he is clearly intent on establishing himself on the tournament scene and with consistent results like this is clearly on course to do so. His run to the final pitted him against some tough opponents, a 5-0 win over tour 3 finalist Sam Bircher and 5-4 win against former England player Neil Davey being two of the highlights, but his toughest game came in the final against London’s Eddie Barker.
Barker, who was this years World Championship semi-finalist, had an equally tough run to the final which involved taking out back-to-back tour winner Karl Sutton in the semi-final. Sutton was on course to make history by becoming the first player to win the double-double, both the tour and the challenge on back to back events. His dream was to come to an end in the semis as Barker showed his class and composure to take the victory in a deciding frame. This set up a high standard final between two players who were both Premier League players in 2017. Thompson was to come out on top in a deciding frame and put himself second in the Challenge rankings, narrowly behind Karl Sutton, both of whom are a clear distance ahead of the crowd, so the top spot will be theirs to battle for at the final Challenge event of 2018 at Telford in October.
|FINAL||SHANE THOMPSON ||EDDIE BARKER |
|SEMIS||Neil Davey [5-4]||Karl Sutton [5-4]|
|QUARTERS||Sam Bircher [5-0]||Steve Singh [5-1]|
|LAST 16||Greg Gamlin [5-2]||Lakesh Badhan [5-2]|
|LAST 32||Gurvinder Gill [5-3]||Dale Greenwood [5-2]|
|LAST 64||Mark Ash [5-0]||Chris Day [5-1]|
|LAST 128||Andrew Day [4-0]||Richard John [4-1]|