A young Midlothian pool player will be bidding to help Scotland become European Pool Champions when the tournament gets under way next Wednesday.
Aaron Raine (15) has already shown his potential with team wins in the European Championships and World Championships at under 15 level, and bronze in the singles at the Worlds last year.
However, now he has been called up to the under 18s for the Bridlington Spa event on May 1, where they will take on England and Wales for the coveted crown. His dad Darren, a former Scottish pool champion himself, is his biggest supporter, but he won’t quite have a front seat for the tournament as he explains.
He told the Advertiser: “They have two tiers at Bridlington Spa, the mums are down at the front and dads are at the top. We stay out the way, he could hear me tutting and humming. I’m more nervous watching him than I am when I’m playing myself. You get a better view from up there though.
“He never used to take my advice but he is now. He knows when he has chose the wrong shot as he will just look up and give me this look. It’s really special watching him. A lot of people are asking me is he better than you yet, I don’t know about that! But he definitely has the potential, he is a lot better than me than when I was his age.”
Aaron will play for the B team which is managed by Brian York of Dalkeith Corner Pocket Pool Academy.
Darren added: ”It’s a massive step up, he’s really looking forward to it, he’s fearless. He plays in the Corner Pocket Adult League and more than holds his own. I think they’ve got a good chance. My advice would be just relax and enjoy it. Don’t fear anybody and don’t put too much pressure on yourself.”