Les Gillett reaches world championship semi-finals

Les Gillett during his quarter-final win over Scott Edwards. Picture: Dominic Picksley EMN-190125-170818002
Les Gillett during his quarter-final win over Scott Edwards. Picture: Dominic Picksley EMN-190125-170818002
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Les Gillett has claimed a place in the semi-finals of the Just World Indoor Singles after beating surprise package Scott Edwards 10-2, 10-9 at Potters.

Edwards, who is looking to break into the world’s top 16, had defeated 13th seed Mark Royal, before ousting fourth seed Robert Paxton from the event, but finally met his match in the 48-year-old who has repeated his 2017 run to the last four.

“I think I played really, really well, but Scott struggled slightly,” said Gillett, who now plays Stewart Anderson in Saturday morning’s semi-final.

“I did okay in the first set and got away from him and he didn’t quite settle with his weight.

“He had a few chances in the second set and I played an absolute bomb on the eighth end to get me out of trouble.

“All in all, if we were to be honest with each other, we both didn’t play as well as we can and we were not quite up to the standards of the matches before us.

“But it is really difficult, the rink is quick and swingy and you play what you can at the time.”

Gillett, who was on a high from beating tournament favourite Paul Foster in the last 16, looked good from the outset, peppering the jack consistently, prompting Edwards to use weight throughout the first set in which the Melton ace comfortably ran away with.

Things looked particularly rosy for Gillett, but Edwards hadn’t made it this far for nothing and he certainly wasn’t going to go down without a fight and took the game to the 12th seed, stretching out a 5-0 lead early on.

Gillett hit back with a treble to halt Edwards’ progress and then added another single and treble to turn a five-shot deficit into a two-shot advantage.

He looked nailed on to go out and close the set, but Edwards dug in and responded with an excellent three of his own to regain the lead.

But he then dropped another treble on the next, with Gillett producing the best bowl of the match to turn the jack over and collect the big score.

And needing to score three in the final end to take the match into a tie-break, Edwards used weight and split the pack, but fell a bowl short and victory was ultimately Gillett’s.

“You have got to be in it to win it, I am so you never know,” Gillett concluded after being asked whether he could go all the way.