World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association (WPBSA)
The World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association Limited (“The WPBSA”) is the governing body for both Snooker and Billiards worldwide. The WPBSA governs these sports through regulation and application of the rules of the association.
The pair, who made up Thailand’s A team in the competition began the day with a 4-0 success against compatriots Nutcharut Wongharuthai and Ploychompoo Laokiatphong, representing Thailand B to book their places in the final.
There they would face Hong Kong A, represented by reigning world champion Ng On Yee and Ho Yee Ki, who overcame English duo Reanne Evans and Rebecca Kenna 4-2 in their semi-final earlier in the day.
What had appeared to be a close final in prospect however would prove to be a one-sided affair, breaks of 70, 48 and 50 by Thailand propelling the team into a 3-0 lead, before Siripaporn clinched the fourth and ultimately final frame on the black to confirm victory.
The victory is the first success for either player in a major World Women’s Snooker ranking event and the first for Thailand as a nation in WWS competition.
There was a consolation prize for Hong Kong as the B-team of Jaique Ip Wan Ip and So Man Yan defeated Thai duo Panchaya Channoi and Thitaporn Nakkaew 2-0 to win the Challenge Cup side-event for teams who did not qualify for the knockout stages of the main event.
The action continues tomorrow in Thailand with the start of the 2019 World Women’s Snooker Championship, with 53 players set to battle it out for the most prestigious title in women’s snooker. View the draw for the event HERE.
Brandon Sargeant added his name to the long, illustrious list of former champions after producing an impressive comeback in the final of the 2019 English Amateur Snooker Championship at the Star Snooker Academy in Sheffield, last weekend.
This latest edition of the sport’s oldest event began back in January when hopefuls contested regional heats across the country before the second phase – hosted between the Northern Snooker Centre in Leeds and the South West Snooker Academy in Gloucester – whittled the entry down to just four remaining players. The quartet booked their berths and assembled at the EASB Finals weekend where the area and overall championships would be confirmed; none of whom had made it through to the grand final before.
Sargeant, who will compete on the professional circuit for the first time this campaign after topping the 2018/19 Challenge Tour rankings, made breaks of 86 and 101 as he comprehensively brushed aside Wayne Brown, 8-1, to secure the Northern Section title.
Meanwhile, recent Q School graduate Jamie O’Neill set-up an all-top tier final following a see-saw 8-6 success over former main tour ticket holder Zak Surety in the Southern Section decider. There was never more than a frame between the pair, who took turns to lead, until O’Neill won the last two frames of the encounter. Whilst O’Neill crafted runs of 82, 104 and 93, it was Surety who compiled the highest with a 124.
The next day, Sargeant and O’Neill met in the final of this iconic, coveted championship that crowned its first champion in 1916. Sargeant opened his account straight away but breaks of 64, 87, 57 and 65 subsequently aided O’Neill during a six-frame winning streak that put him firmly in control. However, Sargeant stopped the rot in frame eight to bookend his session, and on resumption later in the day he narrowed the gap to just two.
O’Neill re-established a three-frame cushion at 7-4 up, but it would prove to be merely a minor halt to Sargeant’s momentum as breaks of 83, 92 and 113 helped the 21-year-old rattle off six consecutive frames of his own to emerge as a 10-7 victor. Ending his amateur career in style, it was quite a turnaround for the Stoke-on-Trent cueist who won nine of the concluding ten frames.
For the third year running, the English Amateur champion already had their professional tour card assured for the upcoming season; Billy Joe Castle lifted the trophy in 2017, and Joe O’Connor in 2018.
More Silverware Raised in Sheffield…
Several other English national champions were discovered in Sheffield throughout the busy weekend.
Gosport’s Mark Lloyd had to win the last three frames in order to oust Callum Beresford, 8-7, to claim his maiden Under-21 Championship. Lloyd is no stranger to collecting national honours, though, having held the Under-16 and Under-18 titles in recent years, too.
Jenson Kendrick – another talent from Stoke-on-Trent – had a very fruitful time in Yorkshire as he secured a trophy double with victories in the Under-18 and 6 Red Championships. On both occasions Kendrick got the better of Hamim Hussain in the final, with 6-0 and 8-6 score lines respectively.
Another youngster who added to his silverware haul was Paul Deaville. The Liverpool based teenager followed up his Under-14 accomplishment from last year by defeating Liam Pullen, 6-3, in this year’s Under-16 final. For Pullen, it would be his second loss of the weekend after agonisingly being pipped on a re-spotted back in the deciding frame (5-4) by Stanley Moody in the Under-14 Championship final.
Brown bounced back from his disappointment the day before – and of 12 months previously when he fell at the last obstacle – to deny Stuart Watson, 6-5, in the Masters Championship final, whilst John Rees recorded a 5-2 success over Barry Stark to triumph in the Over-55 Championship for the second time in the last three years.
2018/19 EASB Finals Weekend – Results (breaks in brackets)
Northern Amateur Snooker Championship | Wayne Brown (50) 1-8 (86, 101) Brandon Sargeant
Leicester’s 35-year-old Ford becomes one of only ten players to make four or more official 147s.
A new bonus system means that if there are 20 or more maximum breaks during the 2019/20 season, then the players who make those 147s will share a total of £1 million. Ford’s is the first.
World number 27 Ford is also in line to win the £6,000 high break prize for the International Championship, as long as the 147 is not equalled.
He made his first maximum at the 2007 Grand Prix in a match against Steve Davis, having discharged himself from hospital on the same morning after suffering from gastroenteritis. Ford also made 147s at the 2012 Bulgarian Open and 2017 German Masters.
The break was officiated by Andy Yates, who coincidentally also refereed Ford’s first 147 against Davis.
In today’s match against Patrick he also made breaks of 94, 56, 53 and 61 as he booked a slot in the final stages in China in August.
Most career 147s
Ronnie O’Sullivan 15
Stephen Hendry 11
John Higgins 9
Ding Junhui 6
Shaun Murphy 5
Stuart Bingham 5
Marco Fu 4
Judd Trump 4
Neil Robertson 4
Tom Ford 4
On Sunday 16th June 2019 the English Association of Snooker and Billiards (EASB) held an Extraordinary General Meeting in Sheffield, in accordance with a Notice sent out to all members on 26th May.
At the meeting a resolution was passed in favour of the transfer of operations and assets of EASB to the English Partnership for Snooker and Billiards (EPSB), by 180 votes to 4.
The respective Boards of the EASB and EPSB will now liaise to effect the transfer at the earliest opportunity. Further information as to the future plans of the EPSB for the betterment and future development of snooker and billiards in England will be announced in due course.
Everyone at the EPSB would like to thank those who voted and in particular the directors and volunteers of the EASB for their many years of service and for their hard work for our sport.
This year’s editions of the World Women’s Snooker Championship and the Women’s Snooker World Cup were officially launched this evening at a special welcome ceremony at the Hi-End Snooker Club in Bangkok, Thailand.
Hosted by our friends at Hi-End Snooker and the Billiard Sports Association of Thailand (BSAT), the ceremony was well-attended by players and officials, as well as the board of BSAT, Thai professionals James Wattana and Noppon Saengkham.
With the striking trophies for the week on display alongside the perpetual World Women’s Snooker Championship trophy returned by 2018 champion Ng On Yee, the evening saw speeches from dignitaries including BSAT President Suntorn Jarumon and WWS President Mandy Fisher.
All players were presented with welcome gifts by our hosts, including tournament programme, clothing and more.
The draws for both events have now been made and are available to view via snookerscores.net.
World Women’s Snooker is set to witness its biggest week for a generation with the staging of two prestigious international competitions in Bangkok, Thailand.
To be held at the spectacular Hi-End Snooker Club with the support of the Billiard Sports Association of Thailand and the World Snooker Federation, the event will be headlined by this year’s World Women’s Snooker Championship from 20-23 June 2019.
Won last year for a third time by Hong Kong’s Ng On Yee, the tournament will see 54 players from 15 different countries – more than double the number who played last year – contest the biggest title on this season’s World Women’s Snooker Tour.
Among those taking part will be the world’s top four ranked players including defending champion On Yee and 11-time queen Reanne Evans, as well as 12-time European Championship winner Wendy Jans and several other established faces.
They will be joined by several newcomers to the circuit including players from Iran, Japan, Russia, Malaysia, Singapore and India making this one of the most international editions of the championship ever.
The week will also see the staging of the inaugural Women’s Snooker World Cup from 17-19 June, a new team event featuring 17 teams representing countries from across the globe.
Adopting a similar format to that used at the professional World Cup to be staged by World Snooker later this month in Thailand, matches will see two-player teams contest a combination of singles and doubles frames, initially through round robin groups before kockout stages starting at the quarter-finals.
Each country was permitted to enter up to two teams, with Thailand being granted an extra two as the host country. There is also a wildcard ‘Rest of the World’ team featuring Laura Evans and Wendy Jans as the highest ranked players unable to otherwise compete in the tournament due to being the only players nominated by their countries.
Among those who will be fancied to go all the way will be the England A team featuring top ranked Reanne Evans and world number 3 Rebecca Kenna, as well as those teams featuring the likes of Ng On Yee and home favourite Nutcharut Wongharuthai.
Kevin Hanssens claimed his second Belgian National Snooker Championship at the Play Ball Snooker Centre in Hasselt earlier this month.
The Belgium Billiards and Snooker Association (BBSA), a member of the World Snooker Federation, held several national championships that were broken down into stages across five weeks. First competed for in 1984, this year’s edition of their showpiece event featured 125 players in the main draw.
Winner of the title in 2016, 35-year-old Hanssens dropped just two frames during his opening three rounds against Kevin van den Broeck (4-0), Alvyn Depoorter (4-1) and Jurian Heusdens (5-1). In the quarter-finals he eliminated 2017 champion Jeff Jacobs, 5-1, and then booked a berth in the final following a 6-4 success over Peter Bullen.
His opponent in the title decider was debut finalist Kristof Vermeiren, the player who ended his hopes at the last eight stage twelve months previously. A back-to-back semi-finalist in 2017 and 2018, Vermeiren enjoyed whitewashes in his first four matches before dispatching Kobe Vanoppen (5-3), Alain Vandersteen (5-4) and Sybren Sokolowski (6-2) to reach new ground.
With the help of a 68 break, Hanssens – a quarter-finalist at this year’s European Amateur Championship – established a 3-1 advantage in the final. Vermeiren halved the deficit, but that would be his last contribution as Hanssens strung together four frames in a row for a comfortable 7-2 victory.
Earlier in the event defending champion and frequent face on last season’s Challenge Tour, Kevin van Hove, lost in the last 32 to Sokolowski.
Silverware lifted in other events…
Wendy Jans continued her supreme dominance on the domestic scene as she notched up a 17th Belgian Women’s Championship title. Jans was once again in a league of her own, not dropping a single frame throughout the event that culminated in a 4-0 final win over Cathy Dehaene.
There were three different champions in the youth categories. Vanoppen trailed Julien Leclercq 4-1 in the final of the Under-21 Championship before turning proceedings around to register a 6-4 victory. It is the third time in five years that Vanoppen has triumphed in the tournament.
Sokolowski defeated Leclercq to claim his maiden Under-18 title, but Leclercq did taste glory in the Under-16 event after defeating Thor van de Voorde-Van Bocxlaer. During the Belgian Championship Leclercq constructed the highest break of 110.
Kurt Deklerck made it Wheelchair Championship title number 24 after a win over Patrick Puttemans in the final. Patrick Delsemme, Peter Vertommen and Andre Slegers secured the Over 40, 50 and 60 Championships respectively, while Bullen and Mario Geudens took the spoils from the doubles event.
2019 BBSA Belgian Championship Finals
National: Kevin Hanssens 7-2 Kristof Vermeiren
Women’s: Wendy Jans 4-0 Cathy Dehaene
Wheelchair: Kurt Deklerck 3-0 Patrick Puttemans
Under-21: Kobe Vanoppen 6-4 Julien Leclercq
Under-18: Sybren Sokolowski 5-3 Julien Leclercq
Under-16: Julien Leclercq 4-0 Thor van de Voorde-Van Bocxlaer
Over 40: Patrick Delsemme 5-4 Alain Vandersteen
Over 50: Peter Vertommen 4-1 Joel Leclercq
Over 60: Andre Slegers 3-0 Marc Vandenbussche
Doubles: Peter Bullen & Mario Geudens 5-2 Jurian Heusdens & Julien Leclercq
In September 2017 the World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association announced a new partnership with Brian Langshaw of Talking Solutions Ltd for the provision of mental health support for main tour snooker players.
The agreement represents an important element of the WPBSA’s commitment to the Mental Health Charter for Sport and Recreation, of which we became a signatory to in March 2015, and the support provided to all professional players.
Almost two years on from the introduction of this service to our portfolio of support services available to WPBSA members, we caught up with Brian to discuss the services offered and his experiences working anonymously with players so far.
“Talking Solutions Limited provides a bespoke mental health service to all the members of the WPBSA,” said Langshaw, who is a registered mental health nurse, an accredited Cognitive Behavioural (CBT) psychotherapist and accredited EMDR practitioner.
“The service includes a discussion/assessment of the presenting problem, provision of time-limited course of psychotherapy (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) and a dedicated confidential telephone line for the members of the WPBSA. All contacts to the service, are dealt with in the strictest of confidence.
“The service is principally aimed at providing help and support to professional snooker players registered with the WPBSA. The support offered is designed to promote the mental health of the player and alleviate problems that are impacting their mental health. Problems relating to stress, anxiety, depression, the personal and physical demands of being a professional snooker player are the common problems which have been addressed so far.”
The first point of contact for WPBSA members is a dedicated telephone line, with a voicemail service offered outside of working hours. Alternatively, an initial contact via email can be made if preferred by the member.
From the initial contact, an assessment appointment will be agreed with the member to discuss in detail the problems experienced, and the level of support required. Up to six sessions of therapy can be offered initially and reviewed on a needs basis after this point. The number of sessions of therapy is agreed at assessment and provides a time frame for the work undertaken. The severity of the presenting problem and the member’s ability to work with the therapist and treatment methods will be taken into consideration when estimating the number of sessions required.
Treatment sessions can take the form of telephone contact, Skype or face-to-face meetings.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is the main form of therapy offered, which can be adapted to meet the needs of the member depending upon the presenting problems reported.
The level of intervention required and the option to sign-post treatment to a more appropriate care agency, will be discussed with the player on an individual basis. This option will only be considered appropriate if the needs of the player require a more intensive treatment package. Sign-posting care and the most appropriate treatment options available will always be discussed with the player. The care provided is collaborative and Brian will work alongside the player to help and support them throughout. The service provided is confidential and remains within the bounds of professional conduct of the therapist and his duty of care.
From his experience, not just with snooker players but throughout his career Brian has identified a clear link between the mental health of players away from the baize and their performances on the table.
“Mental health and effective coping is strongly associated with enhance sporting performance,” adds Langshaw. “There is wealth of literature supporting this position.”
“From a practical perspective, it is clear to the snooker players engaged in this sport, that the healthier they are and the more effective they cope with the pressures they are under, the better their performance. Snooker is a game of mental challenges and is not only won by skill alone. There are several players whose performance has been enhanced by talking through their issues.”
If you are a WPBSA member and wish to contact Talking Solutions you can do so in the following ways:
Simon Lindblom came through a nervy conclusion in the final to win his second Swedish National Snooker Championship earlier this month.
A title first contested for in 1984, the latest annual edition of the event was held across four days at the Snookerhallen venue in the capital city of Stockholm. The main draw consisted of 32 players made up of 24 seeds determined from the national rankings and eight qualifiers who had progressed from Thursday’s round robins. The following phase of the competition whittled down half of the remaining entries via a double elimination format before a straight knockout was instigated from the last 16 onwards.
Number five seed Lindblom won his opening two matches to advance into the knockouts where he crafted breaks of 64 and 53 when dispatching Nils Ritenius Manjer, 4-0, in the last 16. The 24-year-old then overcame George To, 4-1, and multiple-time winner Kevin Zarekani, 5-0, in the quarter and semi-finals respectively. It meant that Lindblom had dropped just two frames in reaching the final.
However, Lindblom had to draw on other qualities in the title decider as 2007 champion Jim Johansson provided a much sterner examination. A runner-up four times since his victory twelve years previously – including in 2018 – second seed Johansson was also undefeated on route. He emerged from a four-hours plus quarter-final duel with Max Nettleton that went to a deciding frame but subsequently enjoyed a straightforward 5-0 win over former Nordic Championship winner Belan Sharif in the last four.
It was Johansson who started the final stronger as he went into the mid-session interval 3-1 up. On the resumption, though, aided by runs of 54, 39 and 42, Lindblom strung together four consecutive frames to move within one of the trophy at 5-3. Momentum shifted again when Johansson secured frames nine and ten, but Lindblom was resolute in the decider as an effort of 38 helped him sealed a 6-5 success. This latest national triumph for Lindblom arrives three years on from his first, when he also claimed the title by virtue of a final frame.
Last year’s winner Henrik Svedstedt was pipped by Sharif in the last eight while top seed and two-time champion Mats Eriksson perished at the same stage to Zarekani.
Several continental titles were decided during the European Billiards and Snooker Association’s (EBSA) recent 12-day stay at the Hotel Crown Plaza in the Serbian capital city of Belgrade.
Players from 31 different countries took part in this festival of European amateur snooker with 6-Red, Open, Women’s, Seniors and Team Championships on the agenda. It was the first time that the Snooker Federation of Serbia had hosted such an event.
6-Red Championship | Champion Callewaert
In the 6 Red discipline, Alexis Callewaert won his and France’s first ever European accolade when he ousted fellow debut finalist Pawel Rogaza.
Callewaert finished second in his group to qualify for the knockouts where his most impressive victory was a 4-1 success over defending champion and KO top seed Shachar Ruberg (Israel) during the last eight. The 23-year-old followed that up in the semi-finals by denying Spanish national champion Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz, 4-2.
Both players traded frames in the final, but despite Poland’s Rogoza reaching the hill first, it was Callewaert who claimed the last two frames to come through as a 5-4 victor. The Frenchman is set to be the EBSA nomination for the SangSom 6-Red World Championship that takes place in Thailand during September.
European Open | Ice Cool Kristjan
Former Crucible qualifier Kristjan Helgason added another continental trophy to his collection after he was victorious in the 2019 European Snooker Open – an event that reverted back to the traditional 15 red format.
Icelandic Champion Helgason saw off opponents from England, Albania and Bulgaria on his way to the last eight where he stopped the charge of promising 12-year-old Bulscu Revesz (Hungary), 4-1, and then Ruberg by the same score to book a spot in the final.
Better known for his skill on the American Pool table, Sanchez-Ruiz once again showed off his cuesports versatility to make his maiden European snooker final. However, highlighted by a top effort of 73, experienced Helgason came up trumps in recording a 4-1 triumph. The 1998 European Amateur Champion will be rewarded with a wildcard into the main draw of the 2020 Gibraltar Open.
Women’s Championship | Stateczny Shocks
The European Women’s Championship conjured up a surprise as Diana Stateczny became only the sixth different winner in the 23-year history of the event.
Germany’s Stateczny bossed her round robin group, qualifying top after winning all four of her fixtures 2-0. The 39-year-old was pushed in the last 16 by Ewelina Pislewska (Poland), but a 40 break in the decider was perhaps the crucial factor as she squeezed through, 3-2. A second final berth in this competition – nine years on from her first – was confirmed when she subsequently ended the ambitions of teenagers Polina Astakhova (Russia) and Linda Erben (Germany).
In the opposite chair for the final was Russia’s Anastasia Nechaeva, who had created a huge upset when she dethroned defending champion Wendy Jans, 4-1, in the quarter-finals. Belgium’s Jans was aiming for a record-extending seventh title in a row; incredibly, she had also reached the final in every one of her 19 previous appearances in this tournament.
Defeated by Jans in the 2013 and 2014 finals, Nechaeva initially went behind in this year’s showpiece but efforts of 49 and 31 contributed to her moving 2-1 up. Stateczny though would be the one celebrating her maiden triumph after stringing together the next three frames for glory to etch the first German name on the trophy.
Seniors Championship | Ten-Time Morgan
Darren Morgan continues to dominate the 40s and over category as he defended and won his tenth European Masters Championship.
Since retiring from the professional ranks in 2006, the former world number eight has been a serial winner on the amateur circuits. The 53-year-old Welshman qualified for the knockouts without dropping a frame and only lost three in total getting to the final with standout victories over Helgason (4-1 in the last 16) and England’s Wayne Brown (4-1 in the semi-finals).
Fellow experienced cueist Alan Trigg (Ukraine) was Morgan’s opponent in the final. Likewise, Trigg finished top of his group without reply before enjoying a relatively serene passage through the knockouts that included a 4-2 win over a returning Tony Drago (Malta) in the last eight.
Breaks of 48 and 46 helped Morgan take the first frame in the final, although 60-year-old Trigg responded by acquiring the next two to move 2-1 up. However, Morgan wasn’t to be denied as runs of 46 and 44 assisted him back in front before success in frame six meant he raised the trophy for a fifth consecutive year.
Team Championships | Open, Women’s and Masters
Represented by reigning national champion Duncan Bezzina and the legendary Drago, European Team Championship gold went to Malta.
The duo formed a cohesive unit in the two-player competition that involved frames of singles and doubles action. Malta were strong throughout; losing just a frame in the groups and therefore attaining top seed status for the knockouts. Bezzina and Drago then eliminated teams from Croatia, Belgium and Ukraine to make the final, where they got the better of Polish pairing Mateusz Baranowski and Thomas Skalski, 4-2.
Russia’s Nechaeva and Astakhova retained the Women’s Team Championship title they won in Bucharest last year following a 3-0 defeat of Germany (Stateczny & Erben). There was more kudos for Morgan, who alongside Wayne Morgan, triumphed as Wales 1 in the Masters Team Championship when they pipped England 1 set-up of Brown and Chris Hart in the final.
For the full results from all of the championships, please visit the EBSA website.