Congratulations to Cathal and Shane Phelan on becoming the 2017/18 Pairs champions after a night of high drama on Thursday. It was a historic night for both players. It was Shane Phelan's first honour in pool that wasn't a full team effort while Cathal joined an an elite group of players to have won everything that top flight pool has to offer. Cathal completed his stockpile when he added the Pairs title to his multiple individuals honours as well as countless top tier league titles, Cunningham Cup, Vegas Cup and Divisional Cup titles.
Paddy Tavey and Stevie Teggart steam rolled their way into the final without dropping as much as a frame. Barry Kelland and Kieran Cunningham were the 1st 2-0 victims swiftly followed by Benny Hoey and Ryan Diamond 2-0. James O'Hagan and Niall Connolly promised a sterner test in the semi-final but yet again Tavey and Teggart were far too good and destroyed the Dan's duo 3-0.
Tavey and Teggart could relax while the other table was still at the 1/4 final stage thanks largely to Shane McAllister and Barry Murphy taking the Phelan's ti two re-spotted blacks. The deciding frame being the decisive re-spot to send the Whitecross Pair through 2-1.
The formidable Paddy Clarke and Bernie Magee had earlier dusted back to back champions Pat Brady and Harvey Lavelle. One error in the decider saw their 2 year reign end 2-1 when Clarke and Magee mopped up.
Clarke and Magee started as favourite and it was classic encounter which both sides could have won but the Phelan's progressed on a decider 2-1.
The Phelan brothers were hot and on a roll going into their semi-final with Mervyn Kernaghan and David Cromie. The Orchard Pair were living off scraps and got blitzed 3-0.
Paddy Tavey and Stevie Teggart settled the quicker and took the opener with some superb potting. Paddy Tavey had only just a few weeks ago dumped Cathal Phelan out of the Singles and Phelan was determined to not make it 2 in a row.
Tavey and Teggart had the initiative in the 2nd frame but the Phelan's managed to tie the frame up and the game went to a re-spot. The Cathal Phelan won the lag and Shane capitalised on a mistake to level.
The tide was turning and chinks in the Tavey/Teggart armour started appearing. It was the first frome they had dropped in the whole tournament and now cracks started to appear. Uncharacteristic mistakes gave the Phelan's a 2-1 lead.
Right from the break off Cathal and Shane Phelan had the better table in the 4th. They had pockets covered and Tavey and Teggart had ball tied up and against cushions. The Phelan's were never going to let this slip and the Whitecross duo cruised over the winning line to record an impressive 3-1 victory.
With Whitecross and CWC A due to meet in the Cunningham Cup final there's every chance they'll get to meet once again.