After more than two years out from competition, the Republic of Ireland Ladies Snooker Association’s National Special Needs Snooker Championship for 2022 took place at the RILSA Academy Sharkx Newbridge recently

Danielle O’Brien from St Marks took the title for 2022 in a large field of players on the day.  To date we have broken the 100th participation mark in the special needs area in competition as we see 101 players having taken part in our events since we promoted snooker into special needs schools back in 2012 with the first Championship held in 2014, great progress to date with much more to come in the years ahead

We at RILSA are delighted to once more get this Championship back on our calendar and we will continue to advance our promotions in this area in 2023.

At the prelim stage of the Championship Caitlin Williams won her match against Kayla Hayes to advance into the last 16 also making it through was Abbie Thompson with a win over Alex Murane.  Chloe Carey had a good win over Orla Daffy to go through while Fiona Carr would take the win over Kerry Doran to make it through.  The last match in the prelim round would see Kirsty Curtis take the win against Katie Bergin to complete the last 16 line up.

In the last 16 Aoibhe Newman won her match against Caitlin Williams, Abbie Thompson won against Annabelle Shanahan.  Danielle O’Brien won her match against Chloe Auzon Quinn and Chloe Carey took the win against Megan Nolan to complete the top half of the quarterfinal draw

At the bottom half of the last 16 Fiona Carr continued her form and won her match against Abbie Fay, likewise Kirsty Curtis would advance to the quarters with a win over Sky Smith, Ava Foley would make it through against Jessica Beatty while Emma Daly took the win against Rachel Keogh to complete the quarter final line up.

Abbie would see off a challenge from Aoibhe to take the win and make it into the semis, Danielle had a good win over Chloe to advance and meet Abbie in the semis.  Fiona kept to form and won her match against Kirsty to advance and Emma won against Ava to meet Fiona in the semis

Danielle was playing good snooker and would make her first ever final with a win over Abbie and likewise Emma was in form and took the win over Fiona for her first final also

In the final Emma started well but Danielle got back into the match and with good scoring took the win and title of RILSA National Special Needs Champion for 2022

Congratulations to Danielle on her win and well done to Emma on a fine performance.  Thanks to all the girls for their participation and thanks to all the teachers and staff of our Special Schools for all their support.  The girls really enjoyed the day at Sharkx and are looking forward to the National U21’s later in the year along with the County Championship in 2023.

Thanks to Aidan Murray for refereeing the final and all his great work with St Marks in Newbridge.  Thanks to Bernie, Paul and staff of Sharkx for all their help and support

Danielle O’Brien will now go straight to number 1 on the Special Needs National Rankings, we will report on the rankings soon