The 2017 RILSA National Snooker Championship at Sharkx Newbridge has set a new milestone for women’s snooker in Ireland after a week long pre qualifiers and two fantastic Championship days at Sharkx with a staggering 78 player entry, the largest entry ever in the history of women’s snooker here in Ireland.

The favourites for the title, Annette Newman, Cathy Dunne, Paula Judge & Sandra Bryan, as predicted came through some tough matches over the weekend as many of our players are improving all the time and with a fantastic number of junior players now coming through our schools, it’s only a matter of time when these young prospects of the future will be knocking on the door of our current top players.

Number 1 Annette Newman from Carlow had a comfortable win over Katie French from Kildare in their last 16 match, but had to play catch up against Aine Brennan from Carlow after Aine took the first frame on the black, however Annette took the next 2 frames to advance to the semis.

In her last 16 match, Paula Judge from Dublin and current number 6 was in fine form against newcomer Suzanne Randle from Kilkenny who made a great impression at her first tournament but Paula proved the stronger on the day and went through to meet Margaret Browne from Meath in the quarters with a 2-0 win.  Paula dominated the match with Margaret with a number of breaks, 20, 23 and 28 to close out a 2 nil win to meet Annette in the semis

Sandra Bryan from Wexford and current number 2 had a very close encounter with Michelle O’Boyle from Kildare in their last 16 match with the scores level at 1-1, it came down to a black ball finish, Michelle tried the cross double on the black but left it for Sandra to pot for frame and match to advance to the Quarters.  Tina Keogh from Laois and number 8 in Ireland started well against Sandra in the first frame, however Sandra finished well on the colours to take frame 1, the second was close to start with Tina keeping in touch but Sandra again proved strong with the colours to win 2-0 and a semi final spot.

Cathy Dunne from Dublin and number 11 was in fine form against the number 3 Christine Carr from Kildare and won comfortably 2-0 to advance to the quarters where she met Emirjeta Doda number 7.  The first frame was close with Cathy winning on pink and black and played well to close out the second 49-11 for a semi final meeting with Sandra.

The first Semi final between Annette and Paula started well for Paula going 22 ahead but Annette played some good snooker to get back into the frame and it was 28-28 going to the colours.  Paula potted the colours needed to win frame 1.  Frame 2 started well for Annette but Paula made a number of small breaks to close out the frame and match for her first ever RILSA National Championship final.

Cathy Dunne closed out the first frame against Sandra comfortably however Sandra responded well to take frame 2 72-40, with the match level at 1-1, it was a cautious start in the 3rd between both players, Sandra had her chances but Cathy capitalised on a few errors and took the 3rd frame to meet Paula in the final.

In the final Cathy had chances in frame 1 but Paula potted well to take the first of this best of 5 and again was in fine form in the second to go 2-0 ahead.  Frame 3 saw a great response from Cathy to go 50-48 ahead and just needing the pink for frame, Cathy took on a difficult pink along the side cushion to miss and leave Paula a reasonable chance on the pink which she potted and got perfect on the black to pot and take her first RILSA National Title.

Congratulations to Paula on her great win and to Cathy on her fine performance throughout the event.

A big thank you to all of the other 76 entries who made it such a fantastic success we really appreciate your support.

Thanks to all of our referees, Ger Colleran, Robbie Keogh, Jack Maloney and Declan Tuohy for their help throughout the Championship.  Robbie and Jack officiated the Championship final and did a fantastic job, well done.

The Championship weekend would not have been possible without the help and support of our committee, who work tirelessly on behalf of women’s snooker.

Thanks to Paul, Bernie and staff of Sharkx for providing excellent conditions for our Championship and supporting all of our initiatives, we at RILSA applaud these very kind people for everything they do and in believing in our vision for the future.

Best of luck to our girls heading off to the World Pool Championships in Blackpool in a few weeks time, Suzanne Randle and twin daughters Megan & Carrie and Sandra Bryan, we at RILSA wish them every success and a most enjoyable Championships

We look forward to seeing all our players at the RILSA National 6 Red Championship at Joey’s Dublin on May 27th next.

LAST 16

Annette Newman (Carlow)          2      Katie French (Kildare)      0

Aine Brennan (Carlow)                 2      Valerie Maloney (Offaly)  1

Margaret Browne (Meath)           2      Susan Hanlon (Dublin)     0

Paula Judge (Dublin)                    2      Suzanne Randle (Kilkenny) 0

Sandra Bryan (Wexford)              2      Michelle O’Boyle (Kildare)   1

Tina Keogh (Laois)                        2      Grace Byrne (Carlow)       0

Cathy Dunne (Dublin)                  2      Christine Carr (Kildare)    0

Emirjeta Doda (Dublin)               2      Roisin Beale (Kildare)      0

QUARTERS

Annette Newman                         2      Aine Brennan                        1

Paula Judge                                   2      Margaret Browne                 0

Sandra Bryan                                2      Tina Keogh                            0

Cathy Dunne                                 2      Emirjeta Doda                      0

SEMI FINALS

Paula Judge                                  2      Annette Newman                  0

Cathy Dunne                                2      Sandra Bryan                         1

FINAL

Paula Judge                                 3      Cathy Dunne                          0