Eakin crowned European champion

Pool champion Willie Aiken.PICTURE MARK JAMIESON.

Pool champion Willie Aiken.PICTURE MARK JAMIESON.

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Willie Eakin has set his sights on even more silverware after landing the biggest title of his pool career to date last week.

The Coleraine man picked up the EBA European Nations Individual Seniors title at the Lodge Hotel following his 4-3 victory over Englishman Barry Finnan.

In an electric atmosphere Eakin fought his way back from 2-1 and 3-2 down to claim the prestigious title, but he told Times Sport he is already eyeing more success on the international scene.

“There’s plenty of life in the old dog yet,” joked Willie.

“This has whetted the appetite for more that’s for sure.

“I’m absolutely delighted to have won this competition, I have been fortunate to have won other big titles down the years including the Coleraine Singles, but this really is the pinnacle.”

Eakin’s joy was made sweeter as the win came in his home town. He told Times Sport the atmosphere in the Lodge Hotel during the final was unbelievable.

“It really was electric,” he said. “The Northern Ireland team were right beside our table and when I sank the final black to win it the roof almost came off the place.

“It was a great final, really edge of your seat stuff as it swung both ways between myself and Barry. He was probably one of the pre-event favourites so I’m thrilled to beat him. And to do it in my own backyard is the icing on the cake.

“Before the event I had obviously set myself a target of getting to the final, so to do that and actually win it in Coleraine is a fantastic feeling.”