News from the Editor’s Chair
With just a few days to go before the start of the 1999 I.B.S.F.
World Billiards Championship, it’s worth sparing a thought for
the players who have entered the championship. Competition at any
level gives one a buzz, but the opportunity to match one’s skills against
opposition at an International level is, for most, the realisation of a
dream. This year’s event is made even more exciting by the apparent
omission of professionals from the tournament. The officially
undisclosed reason for this move is lost in obscurity, but nevertheless
comes as a welcome turn of events for the majority of amateur players.
Unlike last year’s event, the competition is opened up and a less
predictable result is forecast. Several players are now in with a chance
of World honours at Carlow. Early indications are for a good entry
with enough talent and variations in style to satisfy the most ardent
aficionado. The Asian connection is well represented and they, like the
Australians, will he trying very hard to get into the frame.
The Amateur Billiard Player is convinced that the championship will
be a success with its limited entry. The change augers well for the
future of International billiards. Our thanks go to the IBSF and the
Republic of Ireland Association and its officials for their efforts in
staging the championship. It almost goes without saying that the players
and visiting officials will be made most welcome in Ireland and can
look forward to a championship to remember.
Coaching is high on the agenda of all sporting organisations and
cue sport is no exception. To attract funding for the day to day
running of our sport there has to be a commitment to provide training
and coaching facilities, without discrimination, at all levels of
participation and with particular emphasis on the training of young
people. As can be seen from various reports in this issue of the ABP,
junior involvement in our sport is thriving, and not might I say without
the help of several very hard working individuals. Ralph Macklin, who
died recently, was a shining example of one man’s determination and
commitment to the game when he founded the Teesside Boys’ Billiards
League in the seventies. His legacy will leave a lasting model for all
junior leagues In this country.
The strength of any sport is dependent on the interest and support at
grass roots. We now have a swell of interest at grass roots level which
we must capitalise on and nurture as quickly and efficiently as possible.
To this end Mr. Peter Shelley, Chairman of the E.A.B.A. billiards
committee, will be liaising with Mr. Neil Tomkins W.S.A. Co-ordinator
of Coaching, to format a billiards coaching course. The course will be
targeted mainly at young people but will be extended to include all age
groups as the course becomes established. Progress on the formulation
of the course and possible introduction dates will be monitored by this
magazine and news brought to all interested parties as soon as the
information is available.
Back to the I.B.S.F. World Billiards Championship ! At a meeting
of the E.A.S.B. Executive Committee the billiards delegate put
in a request that the E.A.S.B. make a bid to stage the I.B.S.F. World
Billiards Championship in England, on the earliest possible date that a
slot in the international calendar becomes available. This request was
unanimously approved , in principle , and it was decided that the billiards
committee should liaise with the EASB to study the feasibility and
financial implications of the proposition before a firm bid be made.
The championship was last held in this country in 1969. The
championship was won by Jack Karnehm who beat Michael Ferreira
by the most number of wins on an American type round-robin format.
The championship was held at the Liverpool Victoria Building, Holborn
London, Twelve players competed, a list which included some of the
most illustrious names in billiards. Each player played each other and
Jack Karnehm came out the winner with nine wins from ten matches.
Should England be successful in its bid for the championship, it could
be another step in the right direction to reinstating billiards to its rightful
position in world sport.
Your A.B.P. team trust that you are all enjoying the lovely summer
weather, resting, and preparing for yet another stimulating and
Keep a straight line,