Paul Foster will be the lone Scot from the eight players in the top half of the ‘JUST’ World Singles draw. He won his 1st Round match against 21 year old Irish star Sam Barkley 12-2, 11-7 and moves forward to a 2nd round clash on Tuesday 19th against Wayne Willgress.
Foster, a five time winner of this title – the last of which was in 2017 against Greg Harlow, got off to the perfect start against his young Irish opponent.
In the second however it was a different story, with the Co Antrim player moving 5-0 ahead after just three of the nine end sets. The Troon stalwart though replied with a single on the fourth and only dropped one of the remaining five ends to secure his passage into the 2nd Round 11-7.
“I was really nervous to start with” said Barkley later. “It took me a while to settle down. I just couldn’t get a hold of that ‘in-between’ shot and always felt as though I was chasing. Happily though I found a bit of form in the second set. Paul is just different class. This is another level for me, but I enjoyed the overall experience and will take that knowledge on board”.
Foster said “Everything just came good for me in the opening set. I felt relaxed. However that all changed in the second set. I found myself 5-0 down and thought ‘I better pull my socks up’ – these sets can run away from you so quickly.
“It’s understandable that Sam was nervous. It’s his first time in this event. I know what it feels like – I’ve been there myself. But once he settled his nerves he showed a bit of what he’s made of in the second and pushed me”.
“JUST” WORLD OPEN SINGLES
Paul Foster (Scot) bt Sam Barkley (Ire) 12-2, 11-7