Wayne Stubbs takes no offence at being behind the eight-ball.
But when the Devonport master behind the cue pulls out his growing adornment of hard-earned trophies from inside of a full suitcase, there’s nothing unfavourable about his worldly pool game.
“I’ve got them all in my car,” he points out, “there’s a few, only from last year and this year – I can’t believe it.”
The Australian masters team member that steered the side to the world eight-ball seniors championship is still coming to grips with it.
Not just the world team win, but his selection of one from just six spots – and the only Australian – announced in the world masters team.
But the triumph of a 13-8 championship win amid the backdrop of chanting from the rabid Irish fans at the tournament final remains still vividly a favourite in his mind nearly two weeks on.
“They are singing out loud – it’s just like the darts there,” Stubbs said.
“It’s so full on loud and it really gets you going. The atmosphere was incredible.”
Stubbs said it was all about redemption.
There was still unfinished business of sorts.
He clinched the 2016 singles senior masters title, but the prized Australian team world title eluded his grasp.
So I thought we’ve got a good team, so we’ll go back and have another crack. We should be able to do this.World team Australian masters champion Wayne Stubbs
Last year’s heartbreak of the semi-final loss spurred Stubbs and three of his five teammates to return to the UK eight-ball heart of Blackpool to make things right.
“So I thought we’ve got a good team, so we’ll go back and have another crack,” Stubbs said. “We should be able to do this.”
Australia also cruised past Malta 13-8 in the semis this year, while Ireland knocked out the favourites England.
So Stubbs can’t help but giggle at the thought of the vanquished English on the sidelines, looking jealously at the Aussies advancing.
“It’s a bit like the cricket, really,” he again chuckles.
“They’re full on into it over there, so to beat their blokes at their own game is good.”
Now revering in his success, the 54-year-old was almost lost to the high-end of the game when he walked away to put more time into his eight-ball playing sons.
“Once they got out of it, I just turned 50 and thought, ‘yeah, I’ll have a go at the Masters’,” Stubbs said. “I then knew what to expect at a world title and everything has just fell into place.”
Stubbs once wore the Australia world championship colours in 2004 with the open team but that soon ended for close to a decade.
Admitting to stage fright in front of the eight-ball world, thoughts of home inside the dusty pool halls of the North-West got him through.
“Especially when you win a world title, you feel an ambassador for Tasmanian eight-ball,” he said.