AN ex-tiler whose first purchase after a £2.4million lottery win was a pool table is due to represent England at the sport’s European Championships.
Neil Jones, 59, said competing in the tournament in Malta next month will be his “proudest moment”.
He had just £13 in his pocket when he and partner Julie Kirkham won the money in a National Lottery draw just before Christmas 2010.
Neil, from Stoke-on-Trent, bought a pool table after playing snooker as a junior. With more free time following his retirement and the outbreak of Covid, he honed his skills at home.
He became a county player before his first England trial in 2021.
After narrowly missing out, he was asked to try again this year.
He was successful and was subsequently presented with his England colors at a Home Nations tournament.
Now Neil – who has practiced “thousands of hours” – has also been asked to captain the England B1 team.
He said: “Winning the lottery allowed me to put in those hours.
‘If I hadn’t won, I wouldn’t have been able to buy the table, I wouldn’t have had time for it – I’d still be on my hands and knees tiling.
“I can’t wait to fly to Malta, put on that England shirt and lead the team out.”
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