MARK Cottingham’s impressive performances on the international stage have seen him rewarded with promotion to the next level of the England pool set-up.

The Weymouth cueman captained his country’s B2 team at the recent European Championships and, after a run to the semi-finals, Cottingham was made skipper of the B1 side.

His first tournament leading his new team will come in November when Northern Ireland host the Nations Cup.

Chris Shutlar, a member of Cottingham’s Snookes Club in Weymouth, is also going to be playing at the event after coming through England selection trials – Snookes club-mate Keith Taylor is on the reserve list.

And, while delighted with his move up the ranks, Cottingham says that if given the opportunity to go one better he would have to go for it.

“My first year with England has been a great experience and I have already been told I will captain the B1 team in Coleraine this November,” said Cottingham, pictured.

“The next step is to play for the A team but because there are only six players in the side it’s a lot harder to get into.

“If I was presented with the chance to try for it I would definitely have a shot at it.”

Cottingham and his B1 charges suffered heartache in the last four of the Europeans in Bridlington.

Trailing Scotland B1 13-3, they staged a superb fightback before eventually losing 17-12 – Scotland B2 went on to win the B team final.

Cottingham would like to thank New Image Tiles, F Simmonds & Sons and the Weymouth Sunday Football League for all of their support.

If anyone would like to sponsor Cottingham, or the England team, they should call 07866108270.