It wasn't just the 3 point gap that's been opened up. It was the manner of the defeat for TJ's A. Outplayed, outthought, outpotted. TJ's looked a beaten docket. From the minute Raymie McKenna missed a long straight black in the Working Mens Club to put TJ's 1 up they looked like violin players on the Titanic.
Cathal Phelan was resigned to his fate when ex-team mate Raymond McKenna lined up a straight black to the top pocket. TJ's A looked certain to go 1 up but McKenna fluffed the shot he'd make 9 times out of 10. The black rattled and Cathal Phelan took out an excellent controlled finish with 6 reds and a good black for CWC to take the lead 1-0.
A bold move from CWC A captain Pat Brady to play the tactical and cool headed Cathal Phelan from last to 1st worked a treat and Kieran McMahon was down to 2nd on the CWC team sheet.
For TJ's playing McKenna 1st was a disaster and now it was Manny Byrne v Kieran McMahon. Both league winners with TJ's these 2 giants of Newry Pool served up a high quality match. Byrne played his part in a high quality match. A missed double from the TJ's talisman let McMahon in. McMahon took his hard yellow off the cushion on his 2nd shot and went on to clear his 7 balls and an unmissable black for 2-0.
Paddy Clarke has been a sensation since he returned to the baize for CWC. Clarke looked set for a stunning break finish but missed a cut on the black. Opponent Jack Courtney had 7 reds to hide behind but his attempted snooker kicked off a ball on the cushion incredibly left Clarke a long black which he smashed home with aplomb for 3-0.
Stephen Rooney (CWC A) was taking on Tristan Byrne (TJ's A). This was the 1st long drawn out tactical battle. It was Rooney who tied up the game when he blocked Byrne's red hanging over the pocket. It was the 1st negative shot of the night and Rooney played for the 20mins and the a re-spot black. Tristan Byrne had other ideas. He took on an outrageous finish potting his 2nd last red in the middle and screwing up to cannon into the blocked pocket and thus sinking last his Red. It was a terrific shot but the inform TJ's ace was unlucky to leave himself bridging over yellows for a long black. Byrne hit it well but just missed the pot and Rooney was quickly in to clear for an incredible 4-0 lead.
Harvey Lavelle (CWC A) came in for a lot of criticism after his game with Declan McMahon (TJ's A). Lavelle's controversial break off shot was the big talking point after the match. The ex-Corrinshego legend gently screwed into the triangle of balls and barely opened the pack leaving the white up near the baulk cushion. It was an extremely negative shot but you have to remember Lavelle was on a 4 game losing streak. After 20 minutes of tipping and tapping it came down to the expected re-spot. Lavelle won the lag and McMahon was in 1st. He went for a full table double but missed by a foot. Lavelle was left with a tricky slice which he comfortably missed and left former multiple overall singles winner McMahon with a black he just could not miss for 4-1.
The 2 captain's went head to head in the 6th. Bosco man McAlinden looked all set for a famous but also crucial win over league legend Pat Brady (CWC A). McAlinden in his 1st year as TJ's captain was perfect on his 2nd last red but somehow snookered himself on his last ball to the middle. He simply didn't hit it with enough conviction or belief. Brady is the best player in the league at mopping up opponents mistakes. Larry McAlinden hung in there for a while but eventually a poor attempt at getting out of a snooker gave Brady the 2 shots he was looking for. 5 yellows and finally straight black to the middle and it was 5-1 CWC. 2 points securely deposited and a demoralised TJ's look resigned to the fact they won't be league champions this season.
Paul 'Bunty' O'Callaghan fluffed a super chance to make it 6-1 when he messed up his 2 shots. Declan McConville cleared up his 5 yellows with a touch of class to make it a more respectable 5-2.
CWC's Paddy Tavey knew they had the job done but that might not cut much ice with Pat Brady after an uninspiring defeat to Stevie Teggart. A missed snooker by Tavey let Teggart in and an excellent screw-back positional shot left a routine black for 5-3.
On the night TJ's just weren't good enough. Raymie McKenna and Laurence McAlinden missed guilt edge chances. Jack Courtney should have made Paddy Clarke pay dear for his missed black.
The league may now be beyond the current quadruple champions but they still have 3 cups to go for.
These 2 top teams will surely meet again this season and we can't wait for it.
Whitecross moved 2 points clear of Hustlers in 3rd place after their 8th win of the season. This time they travelled into TJ's to take on the Tigers.
James Toner continued his recent good form to put Whitecross 1 up after a good finish against David Hanna.
Deadly potting Niall O'Hare levelled up against Mark Shevlin.
Matty Cartmill was in top form when he inflicted Marty O'Callaghan's 1st league defeat since the opening game of the season. An astonishing run that no other player in the Premier Division can match came to an end after a close frame and it was 2-1 TJ's Tigers.
Whitecross' Brian O'Neill has come back into the team to good effect with his 2nd win in a week. This time Adrian Annett succumbing to the improving O'Neill and it was 2-2.
Noel Donaldson is one of Whitecross' top performers and he was taking on Gavin McNally - the Tigers top marksman. In a high quality match it was the South Armagh player who prevailed and Whitecross led 3-2.
Joseph McTaggart couldn't prevent the terrific Jason Lennon from making it a level match with just 2 to play.
Whitecross captain Gavin Malone has improved his performances lately and he gave Whitecross a 4-3 lead with a good win over Sean Rice.
The 2 points were bagged when the ever reliable Mickey O'Hanlon defeated Richie Taylor. It's not the 1st time O'Hanlon has rescued Whitecross and it certainly won't be the last.
McGuigan's A thrashed relegation haunted Sheepbridge 7-1. The Bowling club look destined for the trap door as the 'One year Only' side won this relegation 4 pointer.
Seanie Markey took the opener for Sheepbridge but Terry McNally made it 1-1.
Brian Campbell, John Magee and Brendan Healy made it 4-1.
Dusty O'Hagan sewed up the points at 5-1. Joey Magill and Bud Flanagan turned it into a rout for 7-1.
Orchard Bar visited the Windmill Bar and took the Bears by storm. Orchard raced into a 4-0 lead.
Karl McGuinness, Charlie Broughton, David Cromie and Richie Crawford taking the 1st 4 frames.
Paul Murphy replied for Bears but there was to no miraculous comeback for the home team.
Lee Irvine and then Mervyn Kernaghan made it 6-1 and when Paddy Heaney took the final frame but it was merely a consolation prize.
Check out the updated league tables online now.