Ex-world champ Ken Doherty puts on a classy performance at Bridgnorth presentation
Former world champion Ken Doherty proved to be a class act on and off the table at the Bridgnorth Snooker League’s annual presentation.
Doherty was the guest of honour for the end-of-season event, which took place at the Chelmarsh club.
As an amateur, Doherty won the Irish Championship twice, and both the World and Under-21 Championships. He turned professional in 1990 and has won six ranking tournaments including the 1997 World Championship, where he inflicted a first defeat for Stephen Hendry in the final.
Doherty has also been runner-up in two other World Championship finals, three times in the UK Championship and twice in the Masters. He has compiled more than 350 century breaks, all with a cue that he bought when a teenager for a few shillings.
As well as handing out the prizes, the 52-year-old Irishman, took on six of the league's players, one from each club that participates in the league.
The most important trophies were presented to League champions Chelmarsh B – for a 15th time – and to Mick Brezwyn, who became the League’s Individuals champion for an 11th time.
A certificate was also awarded to Beamer Jones in recognition of his services and commitment to the league during the past eight seasons as secretary.
The on-table action started with Doherty showing his class in the opening frame of the night as he rolled in a 102 break against Chelmarsh's Richard Lewis.
Brian Edwards from Broseley fared no better in the next and while Shifnal’s Chris Petford, Martin Coffey Snr from Alveley and St. John’s Rob Powell all managed to sink a few balls, Doherty was never troubled, knocking in breaks in the 40s, 50s or 60s.
In one frame a run of 99 finished up as a 113 break, thanks to some unscrupulous refereeing; an obstructing pink ball was being cleaned and while off the table, the Irishman quickly continued his break, much to the delight of the onlookers who were kept entertained by Doherty's Ken’s humour and story telling.
The final frame of the nigh saw was league’s own 'Mr Snooker' – Simon Thomas, whose credentials include being crowned Individuals champion on 15 occasions and reeling off seven century breaks during his career, including a 124 that is still a league record.
But once again Doherty proved to be too hot to handle as he made it six wins out of six on the night.
During the course of the evening, Doherty made time for members to take selfies with him, and to autograph caricatures for those who wanted one.
The evening was concluded with the ex-world champion enlightening the audience with tales of his rise from the amateur ranks through to becoming a professional, with a few humorous stories and loads of jokes thrown in.
Full List of Prize Winners:
League Champion: Chelmarsh B, RU: St. John’s A - League Cup Winners: Chelmarsh B, RU: Broseley B - First Division Highest Break and Most Wins: Gary Smith (Chelmarsh) - Second Division Champions: Alveley B, RU: Broseley A - Wooden Spoon: Alveley C - Second Division League Cup Winners: Broseley A, RU: St. John’s B – Total League and Second Division Highest Break: Neil Caswell (Broseley A) - Second Division Most Wins: Martin Coffey Jnr (Alveley B) - Challenge Cup Winners: St. John’s B, RU: St. John’s A - Consolation Cup Winners: Shifnal B, RU: Broseley A - 49er’s KO Winner: Brian Oakley (Alveley), RU: Roy Dickenson (St. John’s) - 35 & Under’s Cup Winner: Martin Coffey Jnr (Alveley), RU: Andy Carson (Broseley) - Over 60’s Cup Winner: Mick Brezwyn (Broseley), RU: Chris Lewis (Chelmarsh) - 3-a-Side Winners: Terry Askew, Mick Mancini & Chris Petford (Shifnal), RU: Ian Postans, Carl Walker & Matt Judd (Shifnal) - RH Doubles Cup Winners: Martin Coffey’s Snr & Jnr (Alveley) - RU: Nick & Andy Carson (Broseley) - GC Doubles Cup Winners: Mick Brezwyn & Nick Carson (Broseley) - RU: Owen Hughes & Andy Carson (Broseley) - Secretary’s Shield Winner: Chris Jepson (Alveley), RU: Chris Lewis (Chelmarsh) - Individuals Handicap Cup Winner: Simon Thomas (Chelmarsh), RU: Owen Hughes (Broseley) - Indi None-Handicap Consolation Cup Winner: Beamer Jones (Shifnal), RU: Nick Carson (Broseley) – Individuals Champion: Mick Brezwyn (Broseley), RU: Rob Powell (St. John’s)