Thomas Sharp has ended a run of four semi-final defeats on the Cuestars under-21 bronze tour with a first winner’s trophy.
The 14-year-old from Portsmouth edged Dylan Smith 2-1 in the final of the fifth leg at Chandlers Ford Snooker Club.
Remarkably, Sharp had to be persuaded to compete in the event.
He said: ‘I wasn’t going to play. On Wednesday my form was awful.’
Following a chat with Samuel Laxton’s dad, Wayne, and a decent practice session on Thursday, he decided to make the trip along the M27.
The advice paid off as the Waterlooville Sports Bar-based teenager was unbeaten in the group stages and he overcame Swindon’s Jaydon Elliott 2-0 in the quarter-finals.
He then dispatched first-time semi-finalist Will Kempson, from Salisbury, 2-0.
He added: ‘I was confident going into the semi-final. But, then again, you never know what can happen.’
He then took the opening frame against Smith.
But his opponent from Tunbridge Wells doubled the black off the side cushion into the yellow pocket to force a decider.
Behind in the third, Sharp clawed back the deficit and fluked the match-ball brown.
He said: ‘I went into the last frame and just made sure I played as good as I could.
‘It’s harder coming from behind but I enjoy coming back from behind.’
It means Havant youngster Owen Jenkins, who lost 2-0 to second-placed Smith in the last-four, remains top of the rankings by two points going into the second half of the season.
Sharp is two points further back in third.
George Laxton qualified for the knockout for the first time but went down 2-1 to Jenkins from 1-0 up in the last-eight.
On the gold tour, Elliott Weston compiled a 64 break in a close 3-2 semi-final defeat by England international Oliver Sykes.
Silver tour title contender Samuel Laxton beat former rankings leader Louie Leighton 2-0 in the last-eight before going down 2-1 to Mason Wilson in the semis.
Callum White was knocked out in the quarter-finals 2-1 by O’Shay Scott.
Dean Russell recorded his highest break of 39 in a group-stage defeat by Richard Hillgrove, the eventual tournament winner.
The event was sponsored by Vortex Property Management to raise awareness of Sightsavers, an international charity that works in developing countries to treat and prevent avoidable blindness.
For more information about the charity, visit sightsavers.org
The sixth of the 10 legs is at Greenbaize Snooker Club, Bournemouth, on Sunday, February 3.
Meanwhile, George Laxton, 11, has taken a shock lead in division one of the Wednesday Junior Snooker League at Waterlooville Sports Bar.
Aaron Wilson, also 11, kicked off the new year with a new high break of 18 in the Monday Junior Snooker League.
And it is perhaps fitting that the only two ever-present players in the Junior Pool League have one hand on their respective divisional trophies.
Division one front-runner Keira Hiscock takes a ten-point lead over defending champion Jayden Brookes into the remaining two weeks.
Six-year-old Jayden Hickley has a 12.5-point advantage over George Barber in division two.
World Snooker coach Tim Dunkley runs snooker sessions for under-19s from 4.30pm to 6.30pm every Monday and Wednesday and junior pool sessions from 4.30pm to 6.30pm every Thursday.