English Amateur Billiards Association

EABA : The Billiard Monthly : April, 1911

The Billiard Monthly : April, 1911

What an Early Beginning Means in Billiards

The late John Roberts was a boy player, and his son,
John Roberts, jun., inherited this talent and had the advantage
of starting as a boy, for he was with his father at
Savile House. Joseph Bennett’s father was a marker at
the Eagle in the City Road, and Bennett as a little boy used
to climb into the saloon through the window by stealth and
play with another lad. Billy Mitchell at 13 years of age
was errand boy and sometimes marker at the Angel Hotel,
Sheffield; Peall’s father was the proprietor of the Clarendon
Arms, Brixton, where William started at 13 years; John
Lloyd learnt at 9 years; Dawson, when 13 years of age,
was at the George and Dragon Hotel, Huddersfield; Stevenson
was good enough at 16 to be engaged at the Hotel
Metropole at Brighton; Harverson learnt at the”Bonehouse
“in Bishopsgate as a boy of 16, his father being the
lessee of the saloon; Bateman could play billiards when 8
years old, and was known as the boy champion of the Midlands.

Indeed, it is said that at that stage he could beat
men four times his age. Reece started at 16 years old as
a member of the St. Mary’s Ward Liberal Club, Oldham;
Willy Cook was not intended for billiards, and was sent out
to business in the city, but, inheriting some of his father’s
talent, insisted upon becoming a professional player; Inman
commenced at 14 years, his father being marker at the
Twickenham Club; Osborne at 15, at Leicester; Aiken at 12
years, at Peterhead; and Weiss at his father’s saloon in
Glen Innes, New South Wales. Of course, there are exceptions
to this rule, but the circumstances certainly point to
the fact that, to become really first class, whether one has
the billiard gift or not, it is absolutely necessary to start
early in life.—Sydney Sun.

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