The sixth ranking event of the Irish domestic campaign finally concluded on Sunday with victory for Rodney Goggins in the RIBSA Grand Prix.
Goggins beat David Morris 4-1 in the Hawks Nest Snooker Club in Waterford – two weeks after the event initially took place at the Ivy Rooms in Carlow.
After inner squabbles concerning the persistent clash of the Senior and Masters tournaments at weekend ranking events, the decision was made earlier in the season to hold over any remaining fixtures in a Senior competition if there wasn’t enough time for it to be completed on a Saturday.
As a result, the last few ranking events have all been finished a number of days later and some even at a different, or neutral as it’s being called, venue altogether.
Whether this is really going to work in the long-term is debatable and it is likely that a return to the drawing board will need to take place before the beginning of next season in an attempt to get things working in a more fluid fashion.
While there are some pros to finishing the event at a later date, such as the possibility of more people turning up to watch a final that isn’t played into the wee hours of the morning, it still seems like an unusual way to conduct the tour and any buzz that might be generated, online or otherwise, is lost because the momentum comes to an abrupt stop.
Goggins, meanwhile, rises to number three in the Irish rankings for this term after adding to his previous triumph in the President’s Cup and the Liam Mellows SC Wexford competitor compiled the tournament’s highest break as well with an excellent 120 to finish off Morris.
The attention for the majority of the Irish amateurs will now turn to the Irish National Championship, which takes place at the end of this month and into early May.
Goggins and Morris, who won the event three years on the trot between 2004 and 2006, will be highly-fancied to do well there but will expect to face stiff competition from the likes of Irish no.1 Michael Judge, Brendan O’Donoghue, and TJ Dowling.