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Local Lights Reign Supreme in Northumbria Open Qualifying


Local players David Barnett and Liam Gutcher secured safe passage through to the final qualifying round of the True Potential Northumbria Open, PSA M5 tournament after terrific victories over Elliot Selby and Xavi Blasco, respectively.

Barnett was in superb form against Selby, brother of World No.16 Daryl, and rose to claim an 11-3, 11-6, 11-5 triumph on home turf at Jesmond’s Nourthumberland Club.

Gutcher was similarly impressive in his fixture with Blasco and will face Barnett in the next round of qualifying as both players eye up a main draw berth.

Elsewhere, Welshman Emyr Evans was too strong for Sean Millington in their clash with the World No.198 wrapping up the victory in three to advance. Evans will go up against talented 17-year-old Kyle Finch who is one step away from reaching a fourth career PSA World Tour main draw after seeing off Michael Collins.

World No.212 Julian Tomlinson dispatched Jamie Todd in straight games to set up a meeting with fellow Englishman Ben Coates in the next round.

Finally, Austria’s Jakob Dirnberger, one of only two non-British competitors in the qualifying stages, prevailed in his fixture with Sam Broughton and is rewarded with a tie against Miles Jenkins up next.

Results – First Qualifying Round: True Potential Northumbria Open 2016
[1] Emyr Evans (WAL) bt [L] Sean Millington (ENG) 3-0: 11-5, 11-4, 11-5
[6] Kyle Finch (ENG) bt [L] Michael Collins (ENG) 3-0: 11-7, 11-2, 11-5
[L] Liam Gutcher (ENG) bt [7] Xavi Blasco (ESP) 3-0: 11-3, 11-7, 11-2
[L] David Barnett (ENG) bt [4] Elliot Selby (ENG) 3-0: 11-3, 11-6, 11-5
[3] Jakob Dirnberger (AUT) bt [L] Sam Broughton (ENG) 3-0: 11-8, 11-3, 11-8
[8] Miles Jenkins (ENG) bt [L] Chris Wiggins (ENG) 3-0: 11-2, 11-5, 11-7
[5] Ben Coates (ENG) bt [L] Michael Mattimore (ENG) 3-1: 11-9, 10-12, 14-12, 11-6
[2] Julian Tomlinson (ENG) bt [L] Jamie Todd (ENG) 3-0: 11-5, 11-9, 11-9

Draw – Final Qualifying Round
[1] Emyr Evans (WAL) v [6] Kyle Finch (ENG)
[L] Liam Gutcher (ENG) v [L] David Barnett (ENG)
[3] Jakob Dirnberger (AUT) v [8] Miles Jenkins (ENG)
[5] Ben Coates (ENG) v [2] Julian Tomlinson (ENG)

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