English Amateur Billiards Association

EABA : The Amateur Billiard Player : May 2001

The Amateur Billiard Player : May 2001

Association News

Smith departs

Photo of Chris Smith (5k)

Chris Smith resigns as Chief
Executive of the WBA and EASB.

Chris Smith, Chief Executive of both the WBA and EASB made a
widely anticipated exit from these positions when his “resignation”

was announced by the WPBSA on
Sunday 19th January. Smith had
submitted a report to the WPBSA
during the reign of Peter Middleton
giving his ideas for the future
development of billiards and amateur
snooker. This was sufficiently well
received for him to be appointed in
July 2000 to see these forecasts
through to fruition, but the
practicalities of the task apparently
proved to be more difficult than he
anticipated. During his short time in
office he became deeply unpopular
with the leading members of the
professional billiards association,
and his relations with the World

governing body, the IBSF, were little better. His imposition of a £15
individual membership fee on Amateur billiard players was a decisive
factor in the decision of the EABA to operate as an independent body.
All in all, his six month tenure in control of the sport reads like a
chronicle of disasters which would be difficult to equal. The official
reason for his departure was given as “logistical” by the WPBSA Press
Office. This presumably refers to Smith´s decision to set up an office
for his organisations close to his home in Dudley, West Midlands.

TV turn-off

Zee-TV, the Indian television company, have pulled out of a billiards
sponsorship deal for the World Professional Championships in India
which would have been worth £150,000 to the professional players
over the next three years. Although contracts had been drawn up it is
understood that the Indian company withdrew due to an unacceptable
delay in obtaining a signature from the WPBSA. Fortunately, Mega
Ace, one of the leading management consultancy companies in India,
stepped in as a relacement sponsor and as a result, the World
Championship was hastily rearranged to be played at the Cricket Club
in Mumbai (Bombay) over five days from 11th-15th April (a full
report will appear in the next issue).

New Professional

In a surprise move, Gary Rogers has joined the ranks of the professional
players. His application was accepted and rushed through in time for
him to take part in the World Championship qualifiers at Harrogate on
Thursday 5th April. We will be giving details of Gary´s professional
debut in our next issue.

50-up experiment

It is understood that the professionals have now discarded the 50-up
format after a limited trial period at the start of this season. The World
Championship in India will be played on a time-limit format with a six-
hour final.

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