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Two Cwmbran teenagers picked to play snooker for Wales

Two teenagers from Cwmbran have flown to Malta this weekend to represent Wales at snooker.

William Gwinnell, 13, is a pupil from St Alban’s RC High School, and playing for Wales under 16s. Logan Rawlings, 14, attends the same school, and is playing for Wales under 16s and under 18s.

The pair are taking part in the European Championships starting on Monday 6 March.

two snooker players stood by a table
Ric Washer, WPBSA coach, and Logan in Redz Snooker Club in Cwmbran

Logan Rawlings

Logan first picked up a cue after a football game he was due to play in was called off due to bad weather. His mum spotted a post on Facebook about the junior club at Redz and he joined at the age of 11.

He said: “I went down and enjoyed it. I had to borrow a cue from Redz.” The Saturday morning club brings young people into the sport with tips, techniques and fun challenges. Logan said he completed the final ‘black ball’ challenge and then entered the Welsh Championships for the first time.

He added: “In my first tournament, I got to the final and since then I’ve been in a couple of semi-finals for the under 18s and under 16s. I can’t really describe it. I just like the game in general.”

His mum Tiffany Putnam said: “He started going to the Redz Snooker Junior Academy on a Saturday morning and enjoyed it more and more and started having private coaching with Ric Washer.” Ric is the World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association (WPBSA) qualified coach who runs the junior club.

His dad Rob Putnam said: “It was a surprise to us because we remember being sat in the car in August, just before the Welsh, and we said ‘Logan, just give it your best effort, see how it goes this season. Next season, you might push on.’ He’s worked hard this season.”

William and three-time world champion Mark Williams
William and three-time world champion Mark Williams

William Gwinell

William first picked up a cue in 2018. He said: “I went to a friend’s house and he had a 5-foot snooker table. My parents got me a 5-foot snooker table for my ninth birthday. I loved it from the beginning. A few months later I started going to Redz Junior Club, just before the covid lockdown.

“It is very technical and you need a lot of skill to win, you can’t really win by luck. I enjoy the challenge.”

His career highlight so far is getting his first century break with a 101 and being picked for this tournament. He described how he felt when he found out he had been chosen to play for Wales: “I was nervous at first because it meant a lot to me and there was lots of pressure but I was very excited at the same time. Ronnie O’Sullivan is my favourite player because he makes the game look easy and he is satisfying to watch.

“The Junior Club helped a lot with gaining confidence and playing other people. It  has definitely helped improve my game.”

Cue games are in his blood. At the age of nine took part in a pool competition and won the prize of a family holiday in Devon

Both players practice at Redz four to five times a week.

The Redz Snooker Junior Academy

Visit the Academy’s Facebook page for more information.





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Two Cwmbran teenagers picked to play snooker for Wales

two junior snooker players
Logan (l) and William (r) have been picked to represent Wales