Bognor ace finds form right on cue for southern snooker title

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BOGNOR snooker ace Jon Charlton admitted he was baffled after being crowned Cuestars south of England champion.

Charlton, who had also finished top of the rankings after the six-leg tour, didn’t lose a frame all day in the last-16 play-off at Jesters Snooker Hall, Swindon. And that included an exhibition game against world number eight Stephen Lee.

Two days earlier, the 33-year-old clinched his eighth Chichester & District Snooker League singles title.

“It’s topped off my best-ever season,” he declared. “And I don’t know how I’ve done it.”

Charlton, who lives in Haslemere but plays out of Aldwick Royal British Legion, swept past Welsh international and Cuestars Gold Champion Callum Lloyd 3-0 in the final.

“It was tough,” said last year’s beaten finalist. “I was cueing quite solidly and I played two bad safeties in the final frame when I was 2-0 up and he got back into it. But I was solid on the colours and took control.

“He’s good. He’s not a player you want to leave in the balls.”

Earlier Charlton accounted for James Facey (Cardiff), Vince Elphick (Hassocks Mens Club) and Ryan Mears (Aldershot) all 3-0.

After his first-round win, the architect constructed a 47 break to see off guest-of-honour Lee.

Reflecting on his memorable day, Charlton added: “It was amazing. I didn’t expect that one bit.

“I had a scrappy first match and I thought ‘I’m struggling a little today’. And then I played Stephen Lee and played one of the games of my life. From then, I played with confidence. It was a nice feeling.”

It was Charlton’s second Cuestars season. And he revealed his first ever coach at the age of eight in Aldershot was a certain John Hunter, who later founded the Cuestars organisation.