A PAIR of young snooker players showcased their talents against competitors from around the world recently.

Ben Fortey and Jed Mann travelled to Malta to play in the World Snooker Federation Open singles tournament where the winner receives an invitation to compete on the Professional World Tour.

The pair were amongst 128 players from across the world who took part.

All players were divided into groups of four for the initial games, each match being best of five frames.

Fortey, aged 23, from Hereford, came top of his group winning nine frames and only losing two. He managed breaks of 69, 73 and 74 during his matches.

Meanwhile, 20-year-old Mann also qualified for the last 64 knockout stage by finishing second in his group, winning eight frames and losing five.

Mann unfortunately lost is last 64 tie 3-1, despite having a 56 break in the third frame.

Meanwhile the competition was only just getting started for Fortey who beat his Belgium opponent won 3-1, making breaks of 55, 59 and 68 along the way.

In the last 32 match the Hereford Snooker League player met another English player and won 3-1, having a break of 66 in one of his games.

Fortey proved his talent once again in the last 16 when he saw off a professional player from Germany, winning 3-0 with breaks of 52 and 65.

That took him to the best of seven frames quarter-final against an opponent from Ukraine.

The Hereford player went 3-0 down against an opponent that potted well and also had the run of the ball.

In the fourth frame Fortey pounced on his opponent's rare mistake to pull a frame back.

The youngster again showed fight in the fifth frame coming back from behind to level on points when his opponent fluked the brown and eventually took the frame and match to win 4-1.

The chairman of Hereford Snooker League, Geoff Mayor, said: “ These are two of our youngest, and undoubtedly best, players in the league who have both had 100+ breaks. "I have watched them grow in confidence and ability over the years and it is a pleasure to see them showcasing their ability onto national and international tournaments.

"Their achievements, dedication and skill should act as an inspiration to any youngsters who wish to take up the game.”

Mann would like to thank his sponsors: Phil Jones Financial Solutions, Camelot Q Sports and Mann Made Cues.

Meanwhile, Fortey is seeking sponsorship to progress his snooker career. If any business or individual is interested he can be contacted through the league chairman at herefordsnooker@tiscali.co.uk.