Baize of glory for local pool pair

Local pool players Luke Wrigglesworth (u18's) and Dean Croft (mens) have been selected for the England Pool Squad
Local pool players Luke Wrigglesworth (u18's) and Dean Croft (mens) have been selected for the England Pool Squad

A pair of local pool stars are set to appear at the sport’s top table, representing their country in Malta at the Nations Cup.

Dean Croft and Luke Wrigglesworth earned their call up to the England squad through selection trials in Mansfield last month.

Local pool players Luke Wrigglesworth (u18's) and Dean Croft (mens) have been selected for the England Pool Squad

Local pool players Luke Wrigglesworth (u18's) and Dean Croft (mens) have been selected for the England Pool Squad

For Croft, November’s international event will be a case of following in his teenage son’s footsteps.

He told the Guardian: “My son Christopher was the first to qualify for England, so I’m sort of following in his footsteps.He got into the sport because I played.”

The 40-year-old is captain of Stanley Street Social Club’s pool team and plays for Notts, and although he had faith in his own ability, the England call up was somewhat of a surprise.

“I wasn’t expecting much from the trials, I knew the quality of the entrants,” he said.

“I thought I was good enough, but it’s all about who you get drawn against.”

But four wins from five matches saw the Worksop man make the cut, and he’ll play for the England senior side later this year.

He’ll be joined in Malta by 16-year-old Wrigglesworth.

In the local league he plays for Woodend, and like Croft he represents his county.

There were 45 hopefuls in the Under 18 section of last month’s trials, but the Worksop youngster won five of his six games to impress selectors.

The Nations Cup will involve teams from around the United Kingdom and European nations including Spain, Italy and France.

Croft told the Guardian it’s a dream come true.

“It’s something I’ve always wanted to do, I’m over the moon I really am,” he said.

“It’s still a bit daunting, but I’m looking forward to it.”

“I’ve got county matches and Worksop League games to play, so it’s all good practice to maintain the standard.”