ERIC Webber has said a first experience of playing at a world championships has inspired him to do so again.

The Gladstone star reached the last 16 in the under 23s competition at the World Eightball Pool Federation event in Blackpool, bowing out following a 6-4 reverse against England captain Josh Kane.

He had despatched Stuart Thom, of Scotland, in the previous round.

“I got a bad draw,” said Webber afterwards.

“Josh went on to reach the semi-finals, and is one of the best players in the tournament.

“I played well against him though, and missed a couple of chances.”

He told the Guardian that the ruthlessness of players at that level had been an eye-opener.

Too good for Moroccan Mohammed Lahrach at the first stage of a qualifier for the men’s competition, he then lost 7-3 against Stuart Jones.

“It was so frustrating; he punished me for every mistake,” said Webber, who was successful at a trial for England’s under 23s team earlier this year.

“I had a first chance to win most of the frames, but didn’t make the most of it. He then made me pay.”

He returned to the coast on Saturday for the World Amateur Masters, and saw off Jarnail Singh (7-1), from India, in the first round.

However Videsh Sabharwal, a compatriot of Singh, ended the youngster’s run.

Webber, who lives in Castle, turns his attention next to an internal test against fellow national team members to determine a line-up that will represent England at the European Championships in Malta early in 2018.

Meanwhile Steve Whitlow, also a Gladstone member, reached the same stage at the World Amateur Masters after wins against Will Kingsbury (7-0) and Spencer Jones (7-4) before running into Gurvinder Gill.

Results (selected)

World Eightball Pool Federation (WEPF) World Championships

Under 23s

Last 32

Stuart Thom SCO 3-6 Eric Webber ENG

Last 16

Eric Webber ENG 4-6 Josh Kane ENG

Men’s qualifiers

Round One

Eric Webber ENG 7-1 Mohammed Lahrach MOR

Round Two

Eric Webber ENG 3-7 Stuart Jones ENG

World Amateur Masters


Preliminary round

Will Kingsbury 0-7 Steve Whitlow

Round One

Spencer Jones 4-7 Steve Whitlow

Jarnail Singh 1-7 Eric Webber

Round Two

Gurvinder Gill 7-0 Steve Whitlow

Videsh Sabharwal 7-3 Eric Webber