HE IS the Chandler's Ford youngster who became the youngest karate black-belt in the country when he was only eight-years-old.

And now he may also be one of the most talented snooker player in the UK.

Riccardo Drayton,12, is one of the 16 youngsters that today will take part in the English Amateur Snooker and Billiards (EASB) Tournament in Leeds, in a bid to be crowned the most talented under 14-year-old snooker player in the country.

Riccardo's father Aidy said the Thornden School student will be the least experienced taking part in the competition, as it usually takes between four to five years of practice before a youngster qualifies for such a tournament.

The 41-year-old added: "He is the only one who has only been playing for one year. All the other boys have been playing for longer. This is the first time he has ever qualified for Leeds which is the highest amateur competition in the country for this age group."

Aidy said Riccardo's uncle, Daniele Zagaroli, is a professional snooker player and it was in January 2017 that Riccardo decided to follow in his uncle's footsteps.

He started training at Chandler's Ford Snooker Club and he has not stopped since.

"He tried and fell in love with it. He told me dad I want to play snooker and I want to be as my uncle", Aidy said.

Now Riccardo trains at Chandler's Ford Snooker Club every day.

"What he has achieved in such a short period of time is absolutely fantastic. I feel extremely proud", Aidy added.

Riccardo won his first title as an amateur snooker player last spring when he clinched the Easter Cup at Chandler's Ford Snooker Club.

But before playing snooker, he was totally dedicated to karate and became the youngest karate black-belt in the country when he was only eight year old.

"I just want him to be happy in what he is doing and I would like to see him enjoying what he does", Aidy said.