Stephen Bunting can reflect upon his latest European Tour campaign, this time in Sindelfingen, Germany with his head held high after another positive run.

The reigning Masters Champion once again reached the final day of action, eventually succumbing to World Champ, Luke Humphries in an epic encounter.

Hopefully for Bunting, there won’t be too many more Friday kick-offs as the Liverpudlian’s surge in form over recent months will surely mean a seeded Saturday start going forward.

On this occasion though, the opening day fixture proved to be a comfortable hurdle to jump. It did however have the potential of a banana skin with Croatian, Romeo Grbavac recently claiming the scalp of Josh Rock when he was called up for Pro Tour duty last month.

Thankfully for The Bullet, he produced the kind of performance we are accustomed to and saw off the East European qualifier with the concession of just a single leg.

Onto the middle day and Ryan Searle looked a far more trickier prospect on paper. And that proved to be the case as the English pair traded more breaks of throw that holds in their 6-5 thriller.

But with Heavy Metal scoring slightly better than his opponent, it was the Somerset slinger who found himself one leg from the finishing line, leading 5-3.

Tenacity is something Bunting has added to his game of late and with his newly discovered extra strength in character, the reigning Masters Champion fought his way back brilliantly to force a decider before breaking Searle to claim a magnificent victory.

Unfortunately, it was a reverse of fortunes on Sunday afternoon against Luke Humphries with the Liverpudlian this time taking the initiative and early advantage before finishing on the losing side.

Finding himself 4-2 up, Bunting was unable to close the door on Cool Hand and watched in anguish as the world number one forced his way back to a deciding leg.

And with Humphries teeing off first, he managed to hold firm and take the honours in an absorbing match which saw both men average north of a ton.

Speaking in Germany after the game, this is what Stephen had to say.

“I always look at the positives and there were far more of those this weekend than negatives.

“It goes without saying I would have loved to reach the final session of the tournament but I’m happy with my overall performed. My consistency is something to be proud of with all three match averages in and around the hundred mark.

“In the game against Luke [Humphries], you have to take full advantage of any lead against a player of his form and ability. So at 4-2 up, I’m a little frustrated not to push on from there and grab the win.

“But fair play to him, he played extremely well and on another day, that last leg could have swung in my direction.

“It’s another relatively successful Euro Tour outing and I’m still confident of breaking my duck and picking one of these titles up very soon.”

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