Bolton books place in next round of county singles, but only after pipping Pickford
PUBLISHED: 10:00 08 June 2019
Romford's Richard Bolton booked his place in the area semi-final of the county singles on Monday, but only after an almighty fight.
The former national champion has had a tough time of things in the singles in recent years, but held his nerve against Romford clubmate Steve Pickford.
Pickford is another with an excellent record over the years and this match could have gone either way.
In the end, Bolton held firm to pip his opponent 21-20 and book a date with Stuart Waters, who joined Romford this summer.
Waters proved too good for David Brewington of Harold Hill, winning 21-9.
Steve Mitchinson is probably the favourite to win his area competition after he also made his way through to the semi-finals.
Unfortunately, opponent Fred Wasmuth of Brentwood, who has had a great run in the competition from the preliminary round, was forced to pull out through illness.
Mitchinson will now take on Brentwood's Geoff Byatt in the next round.
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Byatt overcame Rob Fleming at Kings Chase on Monday, winning 21-16, but will have his work cut out against Mitchinson, who has beaten him twice before.
In area eight, Paul Topley of Brentwood seems to be the man in form after a thumping win on Monday.
He overcame Mike Portway of Romford 21-8, but will face a formidable opponent in the next round in the shape of Jack Butcher.
The new Romford bowler dispatched clubmate John Tully in a tight game - 21-16 - to make it through.
Also into the area semi-finals is Nigel Smith, who won another all-Romford battle with Craig Burgess, conquerer of Mark Nullmeyers in the previous round.
Smith got home by a 21-15 margin and will now travel to Rainham to play Martin Blackmore.
Blackmore just got the better of Kings Chase bowler Adam Smith, 21-19, to make it through.
County champion Andy Squire from Maldon is also through in his area of the draw.
Draw: Steve Mitchinson v Geoff Byatt; Stuart Waters v Richard Bolton; Paul Topley v Jack Butcher; Martin Blackmore v Nigel Smith.