Kid Castle set on pro snooker career

Romsey Advertiser: Shane Castle Shane Castle

TEENAGE Southampton potter Shane Castle is certain his future lies in professional snooker after running reigning champion Mark Selby close at the UK Championship.

Castle, the youngest player in the competition, flew out the blocks and found himself 3-1 up against the world No.2 at the Barbican Centre in York on Saturday.

Selby upped his game after the interval to win 6-4 and 15-year-old amateur Castle was disappointed to have missed out on producing the biggest shock in tournament history.

“I felt like I belonged there,” he said. “The atmosphere was good; the crowd was good but full credit to Mark for getting through.

“I didn’t feel the pressure. There was no pressure on me – it was all on him. I’ve had nothing to lose coming in here but I’m still disappointed that I lost.

“I want to turn pro as soon as I can really but it’s a lot different when you’ve been getting phone calls national media.

“I played well and it gave me a lot of confidence, I’m just disappointed that the chance I had I didn’t take and didn’t get through to the next round.

“You don’t want to disgrace yourself but when you’re playing top players in top venues I think that you’re bound to play well if they give you chances.

“It has given me a lot of confidence playing the world number two and losing 6-4.”

Castle was one of seven amateurs in the draw and hoping to follow the example of Mitchell Travis, who beat world No.6 Marco Fu on Friday.

Selby eventually proved too much for the teenager but Castle was proud to have put on a show for everyone watching from the south coast.

“Only my dad came out with me but loads of my friends and family were sat with the TV cheering me on,” he added. “When I came out of the interview there were a few texts for me but there you go. At 3-1 up I wasn’t thinking anything; I just played frame by frame. He got it back to 3-3 and then 4-3.

“I just took it all frame by frame – I didn’t see the winning line or anything. I just try to take it and if I won, I won. “I thought when I was 5-4 down that if I had a chance I could get back into it. But I had my chances and didn’t take them.” Victorious Selby, pictured left, hailed the composure of his opponent. “Shane played really well and deserved to be 3-1 up, he was the better player before the interval,” said the number one seed. “He fancied the job and he believed he could win. Considering it was his first time on TV, he handled it really well. He went out to enjoy it and he knew he had a chance of winning. In the end I came out stronger and I played OK in patches.”

l British Eurosport is the Home of Snooker, showing 19 tournaments this season including the World Championship, UK Championship, the Masters and all ranking events, available on Sky, Virgin Media & BT or online/on mobile via


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