Martin McHugh is back on the title trail in the IBA National Championships - and that’s bad news for everyone else.
The big Whitehead man has written his own chapter in the history books of the tournament and could well add another edition after this weekend’s action at Larne Bowls Club.
McHugh, who rejoined the NIBA club after spending 12 months with Ballymena last season, has snaked his way through to the semi final of the singles and pairs.
When he gets to that stage, he rarely loses. He is the only player ever to win the singles title on four successive occasions - from 2003-06. It’s an achievement that will possibly never be bettered.
In fact, it could have been even more impressive, but his lost to Jeremy Henry, who is now resident in Austraila, in the 2001 final.
And, McHugh is also a past master in the pairs discipline, along with his Whitehead and Ireland international colleague Barry Browne.
They have been on the winning rostrum three times since 2002.
There is the mouth-watering prospect of McHugh clashing with Ian McClure in Saturday’s singles final, although neither player will currently dare to dream of that scenario.
“Nothing is ever straightforward in this game,” warns McHugh. “I may have sampled a bit of success in the Irish Championships, but I’ve also endured some heartbreak along the way.
“Everyone is here on merit. There are no easy games when it gets to the level. You basically have to take one game at a time and hope for a little bit of luck along the way.
“It’s been a long time since I contested the singles final - 2006 was my last appearance, but my focus focus will be on the semi final and nothing else.”