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At the halfway point of this year's Challenge Tour, David Lilley has become the fifth different winner on the ten event, second tier series.

Following on from tour stops in Latvia and Germany, the campaign moved back to the UK at the well equipped Cueball venue in Derby.

Lilley, who has enjoyed a very successful career as an amateur, defeated former English Amateur Finalist Wayne Townsend (3-0) and then Peter Delaney (3-0) on Day 1.

Returning for 'Finals Day' he continued his winning streak of frames against Joshua Cooper (3-0) in the Last 16, and then ousted Order of Merit leader Mitchell Mann, 3-2, in the Quarter-Finals.

Recent professional Sydney Wilson was next to be eliminated (3-1) by the North-East cueist in the Semi-Finals, before he claimed the title, trophy and £2,000 with a 3-1 success against Event 1 winner and the OOM Number 2 Brandon Sargeant.

Lilley had previously only competed in one other Challenge Tour event, however, the earnings he banked here have helped shoot him up to fifth in the rankings with £2,200.

After all ten of this season's events have been completed, the top two will win professional tour cards for the 2019/20 and 2020/21 campaigns.

Mann stays in top spot with £4,700, although Sargeant (£4,600) has closed the gap to just £100.

Event 2 winner and former UK Semi-Finalist David Grace (£3,525) traveled to Derby in third place, despite losing to Sargeant 3-0 in the Last 32, he remains there, although he is now over a thousand pounds behind the promotion spots.

Riga Challenge Tour winner Barry Pinches got to the Last 8 and stays in fourth with £2,625.

Lilley has proved that an event win can get you right back in the mix - there is still a lot to play for in the second half of the tour.

​The sixth Challenge Tour outing will take place in Lommel, Belgium on the 4th and 5th of October.

The Cue View's Unofficial Challenge Tour Order of Merit - Top 8 after Event 5

Mitchell Mann £4,700

Brandon Sargeant £4,600

David Grace £3,525

Barry Pinches £2,625

David Lilley £2,200

Steven Hallworth £1,900

James Cahill £1,625

Jackson Page £1,625

The image above is courtesy of World Snooker

Article written and published by Michael Day on the 19th September 2018