Young 'stackers' aim to be the quickest draw in the world
THERE's no World Cup in the sights of Irish soccer fans this summer, but four youths have their eye on a world title of a different kind.
The World Sport Stacking Championships take place in Denver, Colorado in April and the young Irish team competing are currently training hard for the unique event.
Speed stacking involves the construction of 12 cups on top of each other in a pre-determined sequence and taking them down again against the clock. The game is extremely popular in the US and China.
The Irish team features four young enthusiasts: Tadhg Bogan-Carey (14) from Limerick; James Carrigan (11) from Clara, Co Kilkenny; Aaron Dowling (12) from Mountmellick, Co Laois and John O'Neill (13) from Portumna, Co Galway.
Second-year student Tadhg began playing speed stacks at the age of 11 after a friend received them as a Christmas present before getting his own set. "My personal record for the cycle combination is 8.25 seconds. I'm hoping to get faster between now and the championships," Tadhg said.
The four Irish competitors will be among the 1,000 participants at next month's world championships.
Team coach Micheal Nolan said: "The world championships have been running for years and it is one of the world's largest indoor sports competitions."