PLYMOUTH teenager Keelan Kay experienced another learning curve when competing in the qualifying tournaments of both the Youth World Masters and BDO World Championships.
Despite a six-and-a-half-hour journey to Bridlington, in the East Riding of Yorkshire, the Plymouth Studio School pupil was eager to strut his stuff in the World Masters and in the opening round, defeated Bristol’s Mitchell McCarthy 4-2.
That victory put him into the last 64 where he met Switzerland’s Eric Vonrufs and a 4-1 victory pitted him against Dutch international Levy Frauenfelder who won the French Open Youth title in 2015, but that form counted for nothing as Kay brushed him aside 4-1.
In the last 16, the 15-year-old found himself 3-1 down against fellow countryman Tyler Radlett, a finalist in the British Teenage Open back in July, but Kay made a remarkable comeback and took three legs on the bounce to emerge a 4-3 winner.
Scotland’s Nathan Girvan now stood between Kay and a place in the semi-finals but it proved to be a step too far.
WORLD MASTERS: Keelan Kay was the highest placed English player in the Youth World Masters
With the scoreline evenly poised at 3-3, Girvan started the deciding leg with back to back maximums and although Kay had a shot at his finishing double, it was the Scotsman who prevailed.
Although massively disappointed to bow out at this stage he can take some solace in the fact that he is progressing well and be proud that he finished as the top placed Englishman in the tournament.
The qualifiers for the BDO World Championships proved to be not as fruitful as the Masters and he had his hopes ended in the round of 32.
Kay opened with a 3-0 win over Scotland’s Sophie McKinley and then, after losing the opening leg, defeated Lachy Rountree of New Zealand 3-1.
Unfortunately, Kay’s best form deserted him in the last 32 and he went out 3-0 to Irish international and World Master finalist Keane Barry.