Windmill v Dan's was the big match in Division 1 of the Newry and District Pool League last Thursday. Both teams have title aspirations and both had good wins the first week's opening fixtures.
Brendan McVerry might sound like another of the Dan's clan but he is very much a Windmill player and he fired his side into a 1-0 lead against a Chris Smith playing his 1st game of the season.
Peter Tavey was sub for Dan's last week but he came into the team to effect as a equalised for the visiting Dan's for 1-1. Gary Cunningham had a good win last week but couldn't stop a determined Tavey.
Captain Stephen Gray put the home side 2-1 up when he defeated Barry Boyle. This wasn't the inspiration to push his team on. To the contrary his Windmill retracted into their shells and were picked off by Dan's.
Windmill signing Paddy Caldwell must the thanking his lucky Windmill stars that he didn't stay with Bears and move up to the Premier Division. He can't buy a frame at the minute and he lost again to see his side pegged back to 2-2. A useful Seamus Graham turned on the style to blitz Caldwell with a stunning 8 ball finish.
Gerald Hughes and Seamus Tumilty aren't exactly world beaters but they were good enough for a decent Conor Cunningham and Sean O'Connor to put Dan's 4-2 up and on the verge of 2 massive points against a Windmill that will surely be right up there at the end of the season.
Both teams took a massive gamble in that they left they're best players to the latter stages. James O'Hagan is quality and although his Windmill opponent Darren McCloskey is a fair decent player O'Hagan has that touch of class. O'Hagan wrapped up a super away win for Dan's when he made it 5-2.
What a massive blunder Windmill and Stephen Gray made when they decided to leave Aaron O'Callaghan last on the team sheet. A terrible decision to put it mildly. O'Callaghan let the cue flow when the pressure was off. Niall Connelly had that 8 ball clearance last week but it was O'Callaghan that won the dead rubber final frame to make it 5-3 Dan's. The scary thing for everyone else in Division 1 is that overall individual champion Seamus McVerry wasn't even playing so this Dan's side weren't even at full strength.
Trainors Bar suffered a shock home defeat at the hands of the travelling Granvue Hotel. Both these sides were promoted from Div 2 last season and Granvue were one of the few to get a win over Trainor's.
All was going to plan for the favourites in Camlough when usual suspect Tommy Mooney smashed Owen Smith for 1-0 Trainor's.
Omeath side Granvue hit back taking the next 2 for a slender lead. Peter McCourt beat Martin McCone the Conor Dullaghan beat Declan Finnegan in the match-up of the night. It was quality stuff in a good night of pool so far.
New signing Liam Bradley squared the match 2-2 defeating Ray Philips with some good potting.
Shane Feehan was on form to beat Lukie Phelan and the visitors were back in front 3-2.
Noel Bradley failed where big bro Liam succeeded. Chris Smith is reliable and a formidable opponent and it was Smith that put Granvue 4-2 up and on the brink of 2pts.
Could the experienced Charlie Doherty bring us to a decider? Doherty was excellent last season - especially the 1st half of the season. David Heaney does not give handy frames away and he wrapped up 2 surprise points for the Omeath lads.
Pearse Casey pulled a consolation frame back for Trainor's Bar when he beat Paddy Fisher. Fisher could get the hook as this was his 2nd loss in the opening 2 fixtures.
Mark Trainor is no genius on the table but he did well last season and will surely come back into the starting 8 tomorrow night.
Bosco have won 2 from 2 as they enjoy their great start to the season. They defeated Johnny Murphys 5-3 but won the match with a frame to spare.
McGuigan's B stuffed Indo 6-2. It might only be 2 matches in but Indo look to be struggling badly. Let's hope the craic is good because it's going to be tight for these lads to pick up points. Stephen Jennings is a fair player but he can't save Indo on his own.
Nan's Rams have Rony O'Relly in their ranks this season and he's good for a win most weeks. Ok he only played Tony McGivern last Thursday so you get no medals for that but his win put the Rams 3-0 up against TJ's B en route to a hard fought 5-3 win. TJ's B had pegged the hosts back to 3-3 before the Rams took the final 2 frames.
Unusually after 2 rounds of league fixtures Division 1 has yet to witness it's 1st drawn match.
Just a strange but true fact!