POOL: Huntingdon lad Luke is on top of the world after two titles in the same day

Huntingdon talent Luke Gilbert shows off his trophies.

Huntingdon talent Luke Gilbert shows off his trophies. - Credit: Archant

A Huntingdon teenager is celebrating after becoming a world champion . . . twice in the same day!

Potting talent Luke Gilbert captured individual and team glory during a whirlwind few hours at the World Eightball Pool Championships last Friday.

The 18 year-old, who has just finished his sixth form studies at St Peter’s School, lifted the world junior singles crown with an 8-4 victory against Northern Irish opponent Karol Galka at the Imperial Hotel in Blackpool.

And he barely had time to take in his success before returning to the table to help the England A team beat Australia 13-9 in the junior team final.

“I always felt I had a chance of winning the title,” said Gilbert, who was a runner-up in the European Championships earlier this year.

“But you can never be too sure of the standard with such a strong field of players from all over the world.

“I faced some tough opponents, including two very good England team-mates, on the way to the final.

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“I didn’t get off to the best start in the final itself but I found some form to take out three one-visit clearances in a row to put myself one frame away from lifting the trophy.

“I was confident I could finish the job from there but it was good to get it done quickly in the next frame.

“I didn’t really have time to celebrate as I went straight into the team final and it was great to be part of another win.”

Gilbert came through six matches in all to reign in the singles.

He beat Indian rival Kartik Nandha 6-1 in the opening round before whitewashing Neil-J Dimer of Australia in the last 32.

He then saw off fellow English potters Harry Compton (6-3 in the last 16) and Jake Pass (7-5 in the quarter-finals) ahead of a smooth 7-3 victory against South African opponent Marchelino James in the last four. His glorious run was completed by that final triumph against Galka.

Gilbert then won all five of his frames in the team final as pre-tournament practice with a former world champion paid dividends.

He has been putting in the hours with John Roe – who captured the men’s world crown in 2012 - at his The Court Pool & Snooker Club in Peterborough. Gibert also practices regularly with fellow Huntingdonshire cueist Dom Cooney.

He now hopes to earn a place on the UK Pool Tour and is searching for a sponsor to help him take the next step in his sporting career.

Full footage of the final can be found here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GjZ5gVYNcFo