THE countdown clock to the start of the 2016 quest for North-West snooker’s supreme individual title is set to be activated following tomorrow night’s Senior Championship draw, held at Shantallow House and supervised by the NWIABSA committee.
Sponsored by the Brady family to perpetuate the memory of legendary ex-champion Hugh Brady (snr), this year’s renewal will be contested by the usual star-studded line-up, the eight seeded contenders headed by the gold medal-winning quadruple of Stephen Brady (defender), Aidan Devenney (2014), Maurice Ferguson (2011) and Gerald McCloskey (2010).
The remaining seeded slots are occupied by the four players with the most recent silver medal accreditation, led by Peter Doherty (2015), Seamus Cusack (2014), Sean McVeigh (2013) and Simon Cooke (2011).
The non-seeded combatants includes Chris Brown, Chris Gibbons, Paul Keenan, Gareth Kirwan, Phelim McClafferty and Anthony McGill, a six-pack from the elite senior-graded zone and, as their top-drawer status indicates, armed with the necessary ammunition to figure prominently in the title scrap.
The remaining 20 from the field of 34 are a mix of intermediate and junior-rated contenders and, suffice to say, need to raise their game a notch or two to upstage the established order.
Full line-up reads – Ray Barrow, Seamus Cusack and Shea Moore (AOH); Stephen Brady and Kevin McKinney (Oak); Jan Biernat, Davy Clifford, Maurice Ferguson and Steve Weekes (Glendermott); Peter Doherty, Danny Harrigan, Harry Logan, Paul McCallion, Joe Porter, Phil Porter and Joe Sims (Shantallow); Michael Cairns, Simon Cooke, Stephen Heaney and Richard Long (Hollywood); Chris Brown and Ralph Dixon (Du Pont); Mickey Burke, Gerald McCloskey and Anthony McGill (Tracey’s); Aidan Devenney and Sean Devenney (Letterkenny NWSC); Chris Gibbons, Gareth Kirwan, Phelim McClafferty, Adrian McFadden and Sean McVeigh (Letterkenny CYMS),; Paul Keenan (Top Break) and Colm Quinn (George’s).