Experienced Crossgar lift Mahon Cup in style

Experienced Crossgar lift Mahon Cup in style

8 January 2020

WITH multiple champions on show, including Crossgar’s recently-crowned All-Ireland winner, Kenny Campbell, the Mahon Billiards Cup final just before Christmas promised much and didn’t disappoint. First up was Christian Kirk from St Pat’s against John Weston. Kirk started well with breaks of 26, 23 and 21 to take an early 50-point lead.  

Weston gradually found his range and four 20 plus breaks of his own saw him take the lead at 153 points to Kirk’s 102.

However, currently double Downpatrick individual champion, Kirk responded superbly to hit a lovely 93 break, overtaking Weston before eventually winning out at 200 points to Weston’s battling 172.  

On the other table, Frankie Trainor was up against Colin Flanagan and was finding points hard to come by as Flanagan hit the ground running. 

A string of smallish breaks and a well-constructed 45, saw Flanagan race ahead, leading 150-67 and 172-97 as he eyed the winning line. 

Trainor, though, wasn’t finished and breaks of 21 followed by a gutsy 44 at the death, brought an air of respectability to the result as Flanagan won out at 200 points to 150.  

But for the late breaks by Kirk and Trainor, the match might have been over bar the shouting.

As it was, after handicap adjustment, Crossgar were to take just a 2two point lead into the final tie between former Northern Ireland champion John McIntyre and Campbell.

The Crossgar contingent were buoyed when Campbell’s first scoring visit to the table saw him make a 45 break. 

However, McIntrye wasn’t put off and breaks of 25 and 56 saw him lead by 31 on the board and 29 in the match overall.  

Campbell bagged another 45 break to re-take the lead, which was to change no less than seven times in the match.  

After a thrilling finale, further late breaks of 28 and 29 saw the younger Campbell break clear at the crucial time, as he closed out the match at 200 points to McIntyre’s 161. 

League billiards correspondent Robert Pollock did the presentation honours, handing the Mahon Cup to Crossgar captain Weston.  

John thanked Drumaness for hosting the final in immaculate playing conditions, as usual and commiserated with the losing St Pat’s boys before everyone enjoyed the usual post-match refreshments.

Many thanks go to Seamus, Gary and Marty for their renowned hospitality.