Ramie wins All-Ireland

Ramie wins All-Ireland

7 February 2024

A DOWNPATRICK snooker player who was recently crowned an All-Ireland champion has dedicated the win to his late father.

Ramie McAllister captained his Blackstaff team to victory in the All-Ireland Club Snooker Championship which was held at the Gleneagles Hotel in Killarney.

Ramie and his Belfast-based outfit defeated Cork aces Youghal in a dramatic final with the winning frame decided by the 55 year-old, who resides in Downpatrick and works as a bus driver.

“I lost my dad, Charlie, last September and he was the man who introduced me to snooker as a five year-old,” said Ramie.

“My whole life I have been working and building towards this goal and finally I can call myself an All-Ireland champion.

“This is a massive achievement in the amateur scene and if it wasn’t for my father I wouldn’t have been able to get this far,” he continued.

“Of course, it was a massive team effort and we did this together. We are a family, they are brothers to me.”

Ramie’s team consisted of Anthony Heaney, CJ Anderson, Gary Clarke and Sean Gray and after topping their respective group, Blackstaff saw off quarter-final competition in Liam Mellow, from Wexford, before overcoming Dublin side Roadstone A in the semi stages.

This set-up a mouth-watering final clash with Youghal and Blackstaff raced into the lead with Sean Gray and CJ Anderson picking up notable 3-0 and 3-1 wins.

However, as expected, the Cork side didn’t go down without a fight and Gary Clarke was pinned back in his match up with Youghal’s Brendan Cooney.

Nevertheless, the battle continued with Anthony Heaney all square against counterpart Aaron Tobin while Ramie was level at 2-2 with top young prospect Ross Bulman.

The deciding frame saw Ramie at his very best as he drowned out the surrounding pressure of the 300 strong crowd in attendance and the thousands watching over live stream.

Keeping his cool, Ramie never truly afforded Bulman an opening, knocking in a 40-plus break on his way to getting the job done.

“The final frame was the difference,” said Ramie. 

“The pressure was on because we were 2-1 up in matches. You have to get that one more match to get across the line and I was just playing the right shots, feeling relaxed and potting.

“I know how unforgiving these finals can be, having previously came close with former club Drumaness and losing an individual Northern Ireland final to ex-professional Patrick Wallace.”

He continued: “But this time just felt different. I was practicing two hours a day in the build-up to this event and all of us were on top of our game.

“Blackstaff club owner, Seamy Flynn, also noted it was the best day of his life.”

Following the conclusion of the final, Ramie was awarded the player of the tournament award to cap off an unforgettable experience.

“I think winning the decisive frame maybe swung that award in my favour, but it’s truly a team effort,” said Ramie.

“Everyone of my team-mates were brilliant and we are now All-Ireland champions.”