Husband and wife duo target the champion show
The husband and wife combination of Joe and Pauline Beattie are targeting another appearance on the world stage ahead of the IIBA Champion of Champions Pairs qualifier at the Watson Stadium today.
Having triumphed in the 'champions' tournament back in 2012, the Portadown couple proceeded to become only the eighth Irish pairing to get their hands on the world crown last year.
But if they are to negotiate their way to Preston in March, they'll required to be at their best because the starting grid of 67 title pretenders is one of the strongest and most talented for many years.
The Beatties approach the competition in the best possible shape as they have both figured prominently in this season's Short Mat Players' Tour.
In fact, they currently sit together in the latest world rankings, at six and seven, behind their fellow country men Mark Beattie (no relation), Andrew Morrison and Jal Richardson, who occupy the top three slots.
They begin their challenge at Shaws Bridge against Harry and Winnie Wilson, from Ardstraw.
"There are many national and champion of champion winners in the starting field. You have to keep focused," said Joe Beattie.