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Dynamic duo crowned U23 pool world champion

World champions Carl Martin and Adam McMackin

World champions Carl Martin and Adam McMackin

DYNAMIC duo Carl Martin and Adam McMackin proved themselves perfect partners in their way to being crowned world champions at the weekend.

At the World Black Ball Pool Championships in Killarney on Sunday, the pair, representing the Northern Ireland U23 team, produced a scintillating performance to beat South Africa 3-0 in the showpiece doubles final.

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During the week of the tournament Fintona’s finest Martin and his team-mate McMackin, from Beragh, stormed through the knockout stages by defeating teams from Malta, South Africa, Republic of Ireland and France before facing the might of another South African duo in the decider.

And the gifted double act saved their best for last in seeing off the challenge of the Springboks .

In the opening game, the pair broke and cleared the table in a perfect start although they enjoyed a huge slice of good fortune in the second game when their opponents potted the white after pocketing the black.

Losing the second frame in such unfortunate circumstances was a hammer blow for the South African team and in frame three the local pair moved in for the kill by again breaking and clearing the table.

Martin, a twice U18 World Champion, admitted that the double act were at their vintage best in the final showdown.

“Our final opponents were without doubt the strongest team we faced but we played really well as a team,” said a delighted Martin.

“Obviously it was a massive help that Adam and I know each other so well.

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“We have played together at all levels, minor, U18, U23 and senior with Tyrone.

“The more it’s doubles, you’re pretty much on your own.

“Doubles is very hard to play because you are playing alternative shots as well as not being able to talk to you team-mate.

“It’s all about teamwork for sure and, of course, it’s a help that we know each other’s game inside out.

“For me personally it was nice to get a doubles title under my belt, it’s certainly something different.”

En route to the final the local partnership defeated Malta 3-1, South Africa 3-2, Republic of Ireland 3-0 before seeing off France 3-1in the semi-final.

Martin and McMackin also played for the Northern Ireland team that reached the last eight of the U23 team competition.

It included the Omagh pair of Steven McGurn and Andrew Maguire who were also in doubles action.

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