Last minute substitute Darren Appleton reaches World Cup of Pool final
Pontefract-born pool star Darren Appleton made the most of travel issues for a rival team to produce a string of outstanding displays in the World Cup of Pool.
Although Appleton and playing partner Karl Boyes were beaten in the final they were delighted with their efforts in a competition in which they were not supposed to be in.
The home nation are granted two teams in the event, which took place in Milton Keynes, and selected their initial four players without including the Ponte cue star and Boyes.
But they went on to form a Great Britain C team when getting into the tournament at the last minute after the Canadian pair had travel issues and were unable to attend. And they outperformed the British A and B teams before losing 11-7 in the final against Germany.
Germany’s team of Joshua Filler and Christof Reintjes landed their nation’s second World Cup title, but rode their luck at times as well as taking advantage of some missed opportunities by Appleton and Boyes, who were looking to complete a fairytale comeback, having won the World Cup in 2014.
They turned the clock back with the way they brushed aside the Netherlands team 9-1 in the quarter-finals and Slovakia 9-0 in the semis, but the big finish just eluded them against the Germans.
Appleton said: “We couldn’t really find our rhythm, but from 5-2 down we battled really hard, made some good shots and some good outs to get to 6-6 and from there it is a blur.
“They had some rolls but that is pool and when your name is on the trophy, your name is on the trophy.
“I definitely feel like I am back to somewhere competing at the top level, so there are a lot of positives. Karl played amazing all week, probably the player of the tournament.
“I am so happy that I feel like I am back and compete again and I am looking forward to the future.”
Appleton is next in action at the World Pool Championship from June 6-10, an event he won in 2012.