Ashley takes top spot in Sheffield

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PROMISING snooker player Ashley Carty did his parents proud by claiming top spot in the Sheffield rankings.

The teenager had led from the front all season and finished a consistent year by reaching the final of the last of eight fixtures on Sunday.

But Ashley, who trains at Eastgate’s North Notts Arena, was undone 2-0 in the final.

His dad John said: “He did very well and we are very proud of him.”

“He has been number one all season and it just shows how consistent he is.”

It has been an encouraging close to the season for the 15-year-old who reached the semi-finals of the EASB u16s Snooker Championship on 27th March in Leeds.

And his dad added he has been all over the country following Ashley’s progress.

“He lost in the semi-fianls but he played very well, I’m happy he got through to the final stages,” John said.

“It’s not easy, obviously he was playing against the top lads in the country but he did very well.”

“He is gradually moving up the ladder.”

Ashley has been one-to-watch over the past couple of years, winning the under 19s Sheffield Snooker Championship, aged just 13.

John added: “He has to earn the right to become professional, if he keeps winning like he is, there is every chance.”

And he has been an unswerving performer in the EASB Regional Junior Tour this year, where he is ranked fifth out of 33 aspiring youngsters.

In the tour’s first event in Hartlepool, Ashley won everyone of his five group games and made it through to the quarter-finals.

The Thurcroft teen was unable to repeat his good form in the second event, out of six, finishing fourth in his group of seven competitors.

But he brushed off the cobwebs in November, when he reached the final of the third meet at the Northern Snooker Centre in Leeds after finishing third in his group.

He lost out 2-1 to Oliver Lines on his home patch in the final but made the quarters again in the following event at Whitley Bay.

At the end of February, Ashley topped his group again in the fifth event at the Oldham Snooker Academy.

He again made it to the quarter-finals but narrowly lost 2-1.

And in the final meet of the tour, on Sunday 20th March at Hull’s Tradewell Snooker Club, Ashley made it all the way to the final.

This time, however, he lost 2-1 to the tour’s top performer, James Cahill.

“It puts him in good stead for the future,” John added.