NEIL Smith has made a brilliant start to the 2018/19 indoor season on the Open Singles Circuit, winning one tournament and reaching the semi-finals in another.

The Westlecot indoor and Royal Wootton Bassett outdoor player triumphed in the final of the Moonfleet OSC tournament last weekend in Weymouth when beating Wiltshire county colleague Graham Shadwell 2-0 in the final.

Smith pocketed the top prize of £1,000, while Shadwell lifted the runners-up consolation prize of £400.

A fortnight earlier at the end of September, Smith had lost in the semi-finals of the Sully Open in Penarth near Cardiff in one of the rare occasions that the OSC has ventured over the Severn Bridge into Wales.

Ironically, Smith lost 1.5-0.5 to fellow Westlecot player Phil Gregory but still collected £200 for his efforts, while Gregory had to be content with the £400 runners-up prize as he lost in a close final to Jarred Breen 2-0.

Following the Moonfleet and Sully tournament results after five events of the scheduled 27 on the OSC this season, Smith leads the rankings on 155 points while Gregory is 10th on 75.

On his way to victory last weekend in Moonfleet, Smith opened up by collecting a big scalp. He came from behind to oust England international Martin Puckett (Dorchester).

Smith lost the first set 7-4 but bounced back to take the second 5-3 to force a tie-breaker, which he took 2-1 and book a second round match against Tiger Churchill, which he won in straight sets 8-3, 10-1.

He followed it up with a win over fellow Westlecot indoor player Craig Hatherall. Smith romped to the first set 9-0 but drew the next 4-4.

Smith was taken to another tie-breaker in the quarter-finals by Five Rivers, Salisbury, player Gary Fountain. He raced to the first set 10-3, lost the second 7-5, but took the tie-breaker 2-0.

Adam White (Chawton Park, Alton Hants) was beaten in the semi-finals 6-3, 9-2 as Smith booked his place in the final against Shadwell (Clarrie Dunbar, Frome).

Smith reigned supreme, taking the title and top prize in straight sets 11-2, 6-5 to head the rankings list and boost his chances of reaching next year’s OSC Grand Final at Potters Leisure, Norfolk.