ROD­NEY DID COUNTY PROUD

‘Whirl­wind’ beats Wex­ford man in Masters snooker fi­nal

Gorey Guardian - - SPORT -

ROD­NEY GOG­GINS from Liam Mel­lows Park in Wex­ford town did the county proud at the Se­nior Ir­ish Masters at the home of Ir­ish snooker – Goffs in Co. Kil­dare – over the week­end, qual­i­fy­ing for the fi­nal af­ter play­ing su­perbly to claim two ma­jor scalps.

It was a fan­tas­tic per­for­mance from the pop­u­lar sports­man who en­joyed one of the great­est wins of his ca­reer in the quar­ter-fi­nal opener when he beat fel­low Ir­ish­man and 1997 world cham­pion Ken Do­herty 3-1.

It didn’t get any eas­ier for Rod­ney, be­cause his semi-fi­nal op­po­nent was an­other man with the world ti­tle un­der his belt, namely 1986 vic­tor Joe John­son.

This was Rod­ney’s best game of a mem­o­rable week­end, as he won in em­phatic fash­ion on a 3-0 score­line to set up a dream fi­nal against Jimmy White for the Alex Hig­gins Tro­phy which was tele­vised live on eir Sport.

‘The Whirl­wind’ – beaten world fi­nal­ist in 1984, and then ag­o­nis­ingly ev­ery year from 1990 to 1994 – started well in the first frame but Rod­ney cleared up to go 1-0 ahead and send the full crowd in at­ten­dance wild.

How­ever, the ex­pe­ri­enced White fought back with su­perb pot­ting to beat Rod­ney 4-1, de­spite the best ef­forts of the Wex­ford­man who was con­grat­u­lated on his per­for­mances over the week­end by the Repub­lic of Ire­land Bil­liards & Snooker As­so­ci­a­tion.

Coach P.J. Nolan said he was ‘so proud of how Rod­ney pre­pared for this tour­na­ment and how he per­formed over the week­end.

‘He was a great am­bas­sador for his fam­ily, as­so­ci­a­tion, county and coun­try,’ he added.

As for the man of the mo­ment, – who is ded­i­cated to the sport he loves – Rod­ney would like to per­son­ally thank ev­ery­one who was in Goffs cheer­ing him on over the week­end, as he knows it helped him im­mensely in his brave bid for honours.

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