Ben’s back in the groove as he stars for Belper Club No 1

There were thrills aplenty despite a truncated fixture list this week with contrasting fortunes for the teams from Bolehill Institute, a stunning league return from an old friend and an individual match between teammates that ended up as a real nailbiter.

The main focus was on the battle between the top two teams in the Highfields Farm Butchers Premier Division, and Bolehill No 1 put up probably their best performance of the season to score an excellent 4-1 home win over nearest rivals Edgefold Club of Matlock.

Ben Monk returned to league action with his new team Belper Strutt No 1 and it was like he had never been away, with a break of 53 taking him to the top of the season’s charts in the opening frame of the match with Bolehill No 2.

Steve Bullock edged out Martin Forster on the deciding black for a 46-45 win in the next and an impressive potting display from Wayne Shooter made the game safe soon afterwards, eventually resulting in a second successive 5-0 win over this opposition.

Elsewhere, an enthralling Intermediate Individual clash saw Matlock Club team mates Keith Manlove and Paul Bryan lock horns and eventually captain Keith earned the 2-1 verdict, courtesy of a re-spotted black in the decider, after each of the earlier frames had also gone down to the final ball.