Isle of Man Billiards and Snooker Association’s Premier Snooker League got underway at the Cue Zone over the weekend.

This year’s edition is being sponsored for the first time by Manx Car Store and there will be a total prize fund of £600.

Joining regular participants Darryl Hill, Tom Miller and Chris Dagnall are Michael Curphey, Paul Smyth, Marek Kenny and Conor Mahon, the seven players selected from this season’s ranking list.

Over the next few weeks all players will play each other once in best-of-four frame matches, then following the league phase the top four will qualify for the play-offs.

The highlight of the first weekend of matches was Hill’s magnificent break of 108 in frame three against Smyth as he eased to a 4-0 win. All play stopped on the surrounding tables as he drew close to the 100 mark and rightly earned a round of applause.

Earlier, Curphey had started his campaign in good style beating Miller and Smyth, both also 4-0.

Miller certainly had chances for a draw as frames two and three were very close, while Curphey hit the highest break of the match in frame four of 59.

Miller could tie the last frame with four reds left and cover his petrol money by matching Curphey’s break. He moved a difficult red off the cushion but promptly let his opponent in for another decent run of 43.

The only minor blemish on Curphey’s day was being the first victim of the 25-second shot clock, but in the end it didn’t matter.

Kenny and Mahon completed the first round of matches. The spoils were shared in a scrappy 2-2 draw, with Kenny taking the last frame and the match high break £5 prize.

This was Mahon’s second match of the weekend, having lost 3-1 to Dagnall the previous evening.

This again could have easily ended as a draw, with Mahon very competitive in the first three frames.

Dagnall needed and got pink and black for frame two and obtained the required snooker on the blue in frame three, only to unluckily pot and follow in the longest of straight blacks while tucked under the top cushion, handing the frame to Mahon.

Dagnall ran away with frame four which included a match-best break of 34.

Thanks go to this weekend’s referees Simon Gardner, Dave Kelly and Scott Campion plus markers Darryl and Jane Hill, plus a big thanks to the Cue Zone.

All matches are available to watch on the association’s Facebook page which so far has amassed more than 1,200 views.