Glory at Goffs for Ken Doherty

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Ken Doherty defeated Jimmy White 2-1 in the final of the Mr Vegas World Seniors Snooker 900 at Goffs to lift the title on home soil.

Doherty was overcome with emotion following the victory in front of his home crowd, which sees him become the second winner of the Mr Vegas World Seniors Snooker 900 event following Stephen Hendry’s success in Epsom last December.

The 1997 world champion did not got off to the best of starts in this fast-paced event, losing his opening group stage encounter to fellow eventual finalist White, courtesy of a break of 47 from The Whirlwind.

White had already overcome Tony Knowles in his opening group game with a magnificent break of 96, meaning his place in the semi-finals was secured while Doherty and Knowles faced off in a ‘winner-takes-all’ final group contest.

Unfortunately for Knowles, who had been drafted in as a late replacement for Tony Drago, his trip to Ireland saw him fail to pot a single ball as Doherty fired in a break of 77 to book his place in the last four.

In the other group, Hendry and Fergal O’Brien had kicked off proceedings at Goffs with a hard-fought match that saw the Irishman run out the eventual winner on his debut in this format.

Both players would go on to defeat the 1985 world champion Dennis Taylor, with Hendry compiling an impressive 88 break in the final group game, to ensure both Hendry and O’Brien reached the knockout stage.

The semi-final line-up was a mouthwatering prospect for the excitable Irish crowd.

First up, an all-Ireland meeting pitted O’Brien and Doherty against each other on home soil – with ‘The Darling of Dublin’ hitting top form at just the right time as he fired in a break of 101, the highest of the day, to secure a place in the the title match.

Old foes White and Hendry met in the second semi-final for another dramatic chapter in their epic rivalry.

The two both had chances to secure the frame, but as the contest approached the final few balls, the tension was clear everyone in the packed-out venue to see. Ultimately, it was White who held his nerve to clear from blue to the final black and set up a final meeting with Doherty.

The final, a repeat of the 2020 World Seniors Championship final at the Crucible Theatre, saw the two legends of the game face off in a best-of-3 frame contest under the unique Mr Vegas World Seniors Snooker 900 format.

White moved into the ascendancy with a break of 77, but Doherty hit back with a 71 of his own to ensure that the final would, suitably, be decided by a one-frame shootout.

In front of his home crowd and at a venue where he used to work as a boy, it was Doherty who got over the line to complete the victory and lift the title at the iconic Goffs venue.

World Seniors Snooker returns in May with the World Seniors Snooker Championship at the Crucible Theatre. Keep an eye on our website and social media channels for ticket details.