Team and individual honours were claimed at the 2019/2020 BUCS-UPC University Snooker Championships earlier this month in Derby.
As announced here, the Universities Pool Council – recognised by British Universities and Colleges Sport as the governing body for university cue sports – recently affiliated with the EPSB. These championships are run every academic year with any person who is studying at a higher education institution affiliated to BUCS, doing at least a part-time degree, eligible to enter.
A record total of 254 players from 34 different UK universities took part in this year’s edition which was held between the Cueball Derby and McCluskey’s. Following four days of action, the top titles went to the University of Leeds (Team Championship) and Lennard Cripps from the University of Kent (Individual Championship).
Following the groups phase of the Team Championship, eight teams qualified for the knockouts. Many matches at this stage were close, including both semi-finals where the University of Exeter 1sts eliminated the University of York 1sts 6-4, and the University of Leeds 1sts got the better of the University of Nottingham 1sts via a black ball shoot-out after their encounter finished 5-5.
Leeds would triumph over Exeter in the final as Michael McDermott recorded the last frame to cap a 6-3 victory. Paul Allen would lift the trophy for Leeds on his final university appearance after many years of playing in the event.
The Team Trophy – for teams who did not qualify for the main team championship – had an all-Southampton final as the 1st team denied their 2nd team 6-2. The second tier Team Shield was won by the University of Leeds 2nds when they narrowly saw off Liverpool John Moores University 1sts 6-4 in the final. The University of Bath 1sts and University of Liverpool 1sts collected joint bronze medals and all four teams will play on the top tier next season.
In the Individual Championship, defending champion Callum Browne (University of Exeter) made a shock exit in the first round to Chris Dunleavy (Ulster University). Later in the tournament Cripps ousted Fenn Sternberg (University of Leeds) in a deciding frame to reach the final, as did Adam King (University of York) against Ciaran McLoughlin (Ulster University) in the other last four tie. The first frame of the final saw Cripps make a 31 clearance after getting a free ball when needing two snookers. He went on to win the match, and title, 3-1.
In the second tier Individual Trophy for those who do not play in institution first-teams, Bradley Carrigan (Lancaster University) secured gold when he defeated George Edwards (University of Leeds) in the final.
For more information about the UPC, please visit their website here.