Kildare’s Celbridge A won the 2012 Leinster Club Championship this weekend with a 3-1 triumph over Maynooth in the final.
The victory comes as no real surprise given the strength and depth of the club’s team.
Captained by Nigel Power, Celbridge boasts three former Irish National champions in Colm Gilcreest, Martin McCrudden and TJ Dowling.
Ex-professional stalwart of the Main Tour Joe Delaney is also in the impressive line-up as well as John Sutton, who had some decent runs in the Players Tour Championship Pro-Am series this season.
Celbridge, along with Maynooth and semi-finalists Navan and Kilkenny A, march on to the All-Ireland Club Championship at the end of the month with Wicklow’s Q Club joining them after coming through a fifth place play-off.
The All-Ireland’s will be staged in Killarney with clubs from Munster, Connacht and Northern Ireland joining the Leinster teams in a battle to claim the prestigious title of the best club on the island.
Friend of SHQ, Johnny Williams, captains the Maynooth side that also includes former pro Vincent Muldoon and he was pretty pleased with how things went over the weekend.
“I felt I played some very decent snooker, having the highest break of the comp (102) and beating Joe Delaney was good for me. Overall, our team played just ok, lots of improvements can be made and people will be dropped in Killarney if they are not putting in the practice.
“Stephen Sherry and Vinnie Muldoon won their matches when we needed them. Vinnie played very consistently having numerous 80 and 90 breaks. Cathal Dunne lacks a bit of confidence which I hope will come eventually and Robert Donohue by his own admission struggled this weekend but I know he is capable of a lot better snooker.”
Monaghan’s Williams, though, believes that Celbridge will be the team to beat at the All-Irelands with such a formidable array of players at their disposal.
“Celbridge are my pick for the title, they have an incredibly strong field, as do some of the Northern teams like Fountain and Q.E. Snooker Clubs. We made the quarters last year and I would like to go at least another step further this year.
“We are having a team coaching session with Irish national coach PJ Nolan before Killarney and I hope this will improve everyone’s confidence as we need a few players to buzz and be inspired if we are going to have any chance at lifting the title.”
Johnny will be back with more information on the Irish snooker scene with the fourth ranking event of the Senior season next weekend.
The results of the Leinster Club Championship can be viewed by clicking here.