STEVE Morrey, runner-up last year, attempts to go one better when he plays in this Sunday’s Wharton Cons Open final.

The Crewe-based bowler, who won the Cheshire Senior Merit for the first time back in June before going on to reach the last four of the All England Merit the following month, is part of an eight-strong field hoping to take home the largest biggest share of a £4,000 prize pot.

As a regular for reigning champions Castle Private A, he is also the only man from the Mid-Cheshire Bowling Association to make it through.

Wirral ace Matt Gilmore, who pinched the last place on finals night from four-time winner Graham Wilson last weekend, will be one to watch too.

He won the Cheshire Senior Merit in 2009, repeating the trick three years later.

Wilson himself ended the run of 2013 winner Richard Goddard in the third round.

Lee Brown, from Stoke, claimed the scalp of another four-time previous winner in the form of Gary Ellis.

The Swinton man was a semi-finalist last year.

Dave McDermott, also from Wirral, is the only other still standing who has won the competition.

His turn came 20 years ago, in 1994.

Kerry Morris (Stoke), Tommy King (Blackpool), Matt Fellows (Stoke) and Dave Jackson (Macclesfield) complete the line-up.

This year’s competition has been sponsored by Leighton Hospital’s Prostate Cancer Support Group for the first time, helping to increase the amount of prize money on offer.

“We’ve been delighted to support them and highlight the work that they do,” said competition organiser Stewart Bailey.

Play starts at the Winsford venue this Saturday from 5.30pm.


Kerry Morris (Stoke) v Dave McDermott (Wirral); Tommy King (Blackpool) v Steve Morrey (Crewe); Matt Fellows (Stoke) v Dave Jackson (Macclesfield); Matt Gilmore (Wirral) v Lee Brown (Stoke).