A SNOOKER quartet from the Poplar Club were crowned National Team CIU champions on Saturday.
The foursome - Colin Morton, Dale Clark, Russell Large and captain Craig McDonald - defeated Llynpia, a team from South Wales by four frames to two to win the coveted prize.
After three final appearances in the last seven years - but no victories - they were finally crowned champions in Coventry. And they were helped by the 55 supporters who made the trip by coach or car.
"It was a great atmosphere," said the skipper. "There was a lot of shouts of encouragement from the crowd and it kept us going. It was tense and there were a lot of close games. Dale won one of his frames on the black and in the first frame, their guy made a break of 60-odd. It wasn't easy."
The Poplar men - who hadn't dropped a frame throughout their six previous rounds - lost the first one. But they won the next two before the Welshmen made it 2-2. But then the last two players held their nerve to clinch the national prize.
"It is great to be champions - for the first time," said the captain, who had played in the Poplar Club's last three final defeats.