English Amateur Billiards Association

EABA : The Amateur Billiard Player : February 1998

The Amateur Billiard Player : February 1998


…of the Southampton Association

by Ernest A Shorney

The billiards league was started more than 70 years
ago and is still thriving.

When I first played in 1950 there were some ten teams
of six players in each of the two divisions. These days
we have one division of thirteen teams with five players
per team. Like many other league’s we now have
individual handicaps varying from -150 (Dave Burgess)
up to +100. We play matches up to a score of 200.

One of the best players in the early days was Jack
Holmes, who entered the “Amateur” regularly. I well
remember the break of 127 he made against me in the
1950’s. Not bad considering we only played 150 up in
those days.

In the 1950’s and 60’s, Southampton played in a very
competitive Inter-Town league versus Portsmouth and
Bournemouth. Eastleigh, I remember, also entered the
fray for a few years. In those days there was great
competition to be chosen as one of the twelve members
of the team.

This Inter-Town league has long been defunct, but our
Chairman, Peter Green, was instrumental in arranging
an annual competition with Taunton. It is good to see old
friends like Dick Watts and Brian Harvey again. I regret
we see little of Dave Burgess in our league due to the
pressure and travel requirements of his job.

Our current individual champion, Danny Zagoroli, is a
marvellous potter of the red, and a most consistent scorer.

What an intriguing match he had two years ago in the
individual final against Dave Burgess, who is a fine “all-round”
player, with much skill at “top of the table”. The
differing styles of play and the excitement as they passed
and re-passed each other, before time expired and Danny
won by a small margin.

We here in Southampton count ourselves lucky to still
have a thriving league and will endeavour to keep it going.

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