The third tournament of the Senior Billiards series was played at the Ivy Rooms Snooker Club, Carlow on Sunday, 15th of October 2017, the format being 90 minutes timed (all rounds). In a dramatic final, between the two reigning billiards champions, 150s champion Aidan Murray and Long-up champion Wayne Doyle, Aidan emerged the winner by one of the tightest margins we have ever seen in a final.
The semi finalists in the top half of the draw were Aidan Murray (Ivy Rooms) and John Kehoe (Enniscorthy), Aidan having had a convincing quarter final win against Brendan Devlin (Celbridge), scoring an impressive 135 unfinished break in the process, while John had an equally convincing win in his quarter final against Joe Doheny (Borris-in-Ossory). The semi final was a well contested battle, neither player gaining any substantial ground on the other, Aidan holding a slender 17 point lead when time was called.
The semi finalists in the bottom half of the draw were Larry Drennan (Kilkenny Shed) and Wayne Doyle (Dun Laoghaire), Larry having had a solid win in his quarter final against Aonghus McAnally (Portmarnock), while Wayne, with breaks of 97, 79 and 77 had an equally good quarter final win against Robert McCrum (Portmarnock). In the semi final, Wayne was first to show, scoring slightly the more solidly of the two to claim his place in the final by a margin of just over 100 points.
The final got off to a steady start, neither player scoring in any way heavily when at the table, the balance of play gradually falling in favour of Wayne, who had amassed an 80 point lead at about one hour into the game. A badly missed simple shot by Wayne, played perhaps a little carelessly, or perhaps a little complacently while stretching instead of using the rest presented Aidan with an inviting position at the top of the table. Seizing the opportunity, Aidan responded with an 88 break which brought him right back into the game. The last 15 minutes was a series of edgy exchanges, Aidan finding himself 3 points in front and winner of the third tournament of the season when the clock ran out.
The next Senior Billiards round of the season takes place at Celbridge Snooker Club on Sunday, 3rd December 2017. The format will be open draw 3 x 150. Entries will be accepted before 10.30am on the morning of the event.
Another billiards event to look forward to is the Timmy Murphy Memorial Handicap, to be played in the Ivy Rooms Snooker Club, Carlow on Sunday, 5th November 2017. Entries as above.
As always, our thanks are due to Marian Leacy for the excellent playing facilities and to all at the Ivy Rooms Snooker Club for their help on the day.
Best of luck to the Irish team who travel to contest the Four Nations Billiards International in Vienna at the end of November.
Results (all matches 90 minutes timed):
Aidan Murray (Brk: 53, 90, 58, 135Unf) 510 -v- 133 Brendan Devlin
John Kehoe (Brk: 59) 408 -v- 262 Joe Doheny
Larry Drennan (Brk: 69, 58) 412 -v- 190 Aonghus McAnally
Robert McCrum 182 -v- 549 Wayne Doyle (Brk: 97, 79, 77)
Aidan Murray (Brk: 51, 55) 279 -v- 262 John Kehoe
Larry Drennan 284 -v- 397 Wayne Doyle (Brk: 64, 52)
Aidan Murray (Brk: 88) 253 -v- 250 Wayne Doyle
Report by Brendan Devlin Billiards TD