Baston man wins Mosconi Cup place

Mark Gray (centre) has qualified for the 2014 Mosconi Cup.
Mark Gray (centre) has qualified for the 2014 Mosconi Cup.
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Bourne Snooker Club professional Mark Gray has won a place in the European team for the prestigious Mosconi Cup later this year.

Gray, from Baston, won his place by topping a European Tour points table following a nail-biting ‘winner-takes-all’ final against Greek number one Nikos Ekonomopolous in the latest event in Leende, Holland over the weekend (October 4/5).

There were 160 entries to the event and four players still had a chance to grab the final Mosconi Cup place. The Mosconi Cup is an annual competition between Europe and the USA which is televised live by Sky Sports - this year’s event takes place in Blackpool in December.

Gray was actually knocked out in the first round in Leende 9-3 by fellow Englishman Kark Boyes, which meant he had to win a plate competition just to qualify for the last 32 of the main draw.

He beat two Germans, a Belgian and the number ones from Lithuania and Estonia to achieve that before seeing off Imran Majid (England, 9-3), Marco Teutscher (Holland, 9-4), Wojciech Szewczyk (Poland, 9-4) and Alexander Kazakis (Greece, 9-6) to advance to the final.

Ekonomopolous was his opponent and he could also still qualify for the Mosconi Cup team with a victory, but Gray held his nerve to win 9-6 and claim the fourth tour title of his career, but his first since 2011.

Gray also took the first prize money of 3,500 Euros.