Irish Snooker

Irish Quintet Seek to Conquer World Under-21s

The 2015 IBSF World Under-21 Championship gets under way on Saturday in Romania.

Champion Hossein Vafaei Ayouri (middle) alongside runner-up Josh Boileau (left) in 2014 - Photo courtesy of PJ Nolan.

Champion Hossein Vafaei Ayouri (middle) alongside runner-up Josh Boileau (left) in 2014 – Photo courtesy of PJ Nolan.

Ireland will be represented by five young players hoping to make a big impression on the global amateur stage.

In a strong team, Kildare’s Josh Boileau leads the way and will be seeking to go one further than his runner-up spot to Hossein Vafaei Ayouri last year.

The recently turned 20 year-old will be joined by Shane Bates, who led the Irish Under-21 rankings with two victories last season, Aaron Moyles and Stephen Bateman who finished second and third respectively, and Adam Fitzgerald who claimed the campaign concluding Under-21 National Championship.

The tournament in Bucharest follows a similar pattern to what is the norm in these amateur international events, with an initial round-robin stage to be followed by the knockout phase.

The first mission for the Irish contingent will obviously then be to emerge unscathed from their group, before potentially launching an attack to become only the third Irishman to lift the prestigious trophy.

Of course, there’s more than just recognition in the amateur record books at stake, with a professional main tour ticket on offer for the eventual champion.

In a field consisting of 106 players from all around the world, there are a lot of challengers for the title.

England’s Ashley Carty, Welshman Jamie Clarke and Dylan Craig of Scotland will be names to look out for from Britain, while the likes of Alexander Ursenbacher, Kacper Filipiak, Lukas Kleckers and Brian Cini represent some of the European threats.

Further afield, expect the Chinese to mount a considerable challenge with Zhao Xintong among the favourites for glory.

The full draw can be viewed by clicking here.

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