On Saturday there was an Under 16 national tournament while the following day, Sunday, there was an Under21 national tournament – a very important event for players at the top of the National Rankings with places at the European Under 21 Championship in Malta at stake.
First on Saturday there was the under 16 to be sorted, and a field of 22 players started the tournament, there were two local players involved Sean Devenney and Ronan White from Ardara who plays out of the North West. Sean didn’t get off the blocks and fell at the first hurdle to Danial Merrigan from Roadstone snooker club in Dublin.
Ronan faired better against a very talented Corey Ramsbottom from Carlow, with a 3/0 victory to move him into the Quarter finals.
The Quarter final line up’s were Noel Landers from Yaughal who defeated Dylan Keightley from Carlow 3/1. The second quarter saw Jason O Hagan from Dublin defeat Mark Gleeson from Limerick 3/2. In the bottom half of the draw North West’s Ronan Whyte moved on to the semi’s at the expense of Danial Merrigan from Dublin. The final quarter saw Aaron Goldrick from Cavan defeat Fergal Quinn from Cookstown 3/2.
In the semi finals Jason O Hagan moved into the final with a 3/1 win over Noel Landers, and Ronan Whyte also moved into the final over Aaron Goldrick with another 3/0 win, Ronan had not dropped a frame in the tournament so far.
In the final the first two frames were shared as Ronan dropped his first frame of the day. The next two frames were very tense and tactical but local player Ronan came to the fore in both frames to win the final 3/1.
A big congratulations to Ronan who without doubt was the best player on the day. Many thanks to the North West Snooker Club for the excellent facilities and to Peter O’Brien who was the referee for the tournament.
UNDER 21 NATIONAL SNOOKER IN LETTERKENNY
On Sunday last there was a national Under 21 snooker tournament played in the North West Snooker Club in Letterkenny. This was a very important tournament for those who were near the top of the current Under 21 national rankings as this was the cut off tournament for the European Under 21 Championship in Malta next March.
19 players took to the green baize at the North West Snooker club on Sunday. There were 5 local players involved, Sean Devenney moved to the last 16 defeating Kevin Mc Sweeney 3/0. Ronan Whyte also moved to the last 16 with a 3/0 victory over Craig Roberts. Club mates Michael Lagan and Eamon Harkin met in the first round and Harkin was the one to move on to the next round. In the last 16 Christopher Duffy was to lose out to Shane Bates and Sean Devenney lost out to Charlie Sweeney. Eamon Harkin and Ronan Whyte marched on to the Quarters with wins over Aaron Holland and Dylan Carey respectively.
The quarter final line up saw Aaron Moyles (Mayo) defeat Jason O Hagan (Dublin) 3/1, and Charlie Sweeney (Newbridge) lost out to Stephen Bateman (Kilkenny) 3/2. In the bottom half Ronan Whyte (Ardara) moved on to the semi final with a win over Darragh Cusack (Dublin) 3/1 and Shane Bates (Wexford) moved past local man Eamon Harkin 3/1.
The first semi final was a very tight match which went all the way to a black ball game, a very loose shot by Aaron Moyles left the door wide open for Stephen Bates to move to the final, referee Peter O’Brien. In the bottom half Shane Bates squeezed past Ronan Whyte 3/1, referee Bernard Mc Guinness.
The final which was refereed by Bernard McGuinness was a superb match with both players giving their best but Bates proved to be the stronger player on the day and squeezed out a win of 3/1 over Stephen Bateman.
Many thanks to all who travelled to Letterkenny and especially the finalists who had to travel back to Kilkenny and Wexford after a long day.
Many thanks to the Referees and the North West Snooker Club for the use of the excellent facilities. Congratulations to Aaron Moyles, Shane Bates, Stephen Bateman and Darragh Cusack who will represent Ireland in Malta at the European Championships in March.
Aidan will travel to China with his son in July. Whether they go as National champions only time will...