Behind every great man is a great woman – and for Northern Ireland snooker star Mark Allen, he has found a gem in his fiancée Aideen Cassidy.
The couple met through mutual friends and got to know each other over coffee dates and long walks during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Antrim man Allen endured a rough two-year period of bankruptcy, divorce proceedings and maintenance disputes from a previous relationship.
But Aideen has stood by her boyfriend through thick and thin and the couple will tie the knot in June.
They spent some magical nights together to celebrate the Antrim Ashes’ special title defense in Northern Ireland in October and their famous British Championship triumph the following month.
And ahead of a push for a second Masters crown this week, Allen told Mirror Sport: “She’s given me nothing but support on and off the table in the two and a half years I’ve known her.
“I can imagine that not many other partners would have remained as faithful to their other half as I have.
“We went through very, very bad times and many people would have dealt with all the things that happened a long time ago.
“She had to constantly go through all the lawyer’s letters and hearings.
“I don’t think many people would have stayed here; fool them more to be honest!
Allen feared he would have to retire from the sport early last season due to his financial problems.
Fortunately, the money problems are behind him and his divorce is final. The only remaining hurdle is to resolve his interview issues with Reanne Evans, the 12-time women’s world champion.
But with most of his past problems in the rearview mirror, Allen has risen to No. 5 in the world and is looking forward to a long future with his future wife and their respective daughters.
“Honestly, everything that’s happened has made us stronger and I think we have most of that now,” Allen added.
“We can now enjoy our future together. It’s going to be a great year for us, we’re getting married in the summer.
“The two girls grow up together and love each other’s company. They get along so well and it’s something Aideen and I have managed well because they grow up as a family.
“Hopefully we have a long, long future together.”
Former champion Allen has been the form man this season and is miles ahead on the year-long cash list.
But he knows he will have to be at his best when he launches his bid for a second Masters crown and £250,000 top prize against last year’s finalist Barry Hawkins on Tuesday afternoon.
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Source: Bel Fast Live