IT MAY have been by the narrowest of narrow margins, but Copnor Cuestars have been crowned Division 4 champions by the Portsmouth District Billiards & Snooker Association.
Pascal Richard’s up-and-coming stars pipped Copnor Xcels to the title by just one frame over the 15-match season.
But the youngsters were “made to sweat”, according to league spokesman Steve Toms.
With two byes in the final two weeks, Cuestars, sitting on 103 points, could only watch and wait as their clubmates racked up two wins. However, 8-4 and 7-5 was one frame shy of their target and they finished on 102 points.
“They were made to sweat for the past two weeks as they never had any games and had to rely on results elsewhere,” Toms told cuestars.co.uk. “But I can gladly say that they did it.”
Copnor Cuestars joined the Portsmouth league two years ago and picked up the Portsmouth News Young Sports Team of the Year award for 2012, an achievement Toms described as “outstanding”.
Richard stressed how “proud” he and Copnor Snooker Club are and added: “They deserved to go up, based on how much they have improved since the start of the season.
“I’d also like to point out that the handicap situation has nothing to do with it, since they have rarely received more than 10/15 points in a frame, and have on many occasions actually been giving starts to the adults.”
Cuestars will compete in Division 3 next season off scratch. Only Division 4 uses handicaps. A new Division 4 team will be formed from this season’s reserves.
Toms said: “It will be a test for those just entering the league but a bigger test lies ahead as the team that goes into Division 3 will play without handicaps.”
Meanwhile, Cuestars regular Daniel Compton gave a good account of himself this week when he was drafted into the Copnor B side that plays in Division 1.
Richard said the 2-0 defeat was “a very good effort considering the three division jump”.
And he added: “His safety play was remarkably good and his opponent, Matt James, was very complementary.”