Recently, as I have been trolling the Billiard related forums and Facebook pages as I frequently do, I have noticed a recurring theme. Canadian pool junkies are starting to ask themselves and their counterparts why Canada will have no representation in China at the upcoming World Team Championships (WTC) 28 JUL – 3 AUG 2014.
By looking at the surface of the issue, it can be simply explained as a lack of funding. However it is important to dig a little deeper so that the average cue-sport enthusiast understands the current state of our beloved sport in Canada. As well as get a perspective of the hurdles Canadian Pros have to deal with as they pursue their professional dreams, as any top athlete would.
First we will look at the prize fund for this upcoming W.T.C. The payouts will be as follows per player: 1-$16000, 2-$8000, 3/4th $4000. This is a good payout compared to other tournaments around the world, however this tournament is in China. Without proper funding in place the players are forced to use private backers, which is fine however they want a sizable return on their money, making this tournament basically not worth it financially speaking after travel expenses. That being said 4 players did agree to go play and the majority of the team secured the funding, all except one player. The missing expense money for this player would have been in the neighborhood of $2500.
With the confirmation date closing in, the Canadian Billiardand Snooker Association (CBSA) was approached to bridge the gap in funding. Unfortunately for Team Canada, they were told that the $1,500 needed was unavailable at the present time. Despite there being a 2 month delay from the confirmation date and the payment date, they were still told that this year would not be possible. The last time Team Canada was able to participate in the W.T.C was 2011, where they lost in the quarter-finals.
In funding terms and not participation, Billiards is a minority sport. It is the responsibility of organizations, like the one I am forming, to change this. Change comes through information which leads to action. With this in mind, when the new website is up and viable, I will be looking for new and innovative ways of raising the funds necessary so Canada can be represented internationally in the future.
Canadian Amateur Championships
On a more positive note the CBSA has recently held their Amateur Canadian Championships at Fairville Shooters in New Brunswick. Congratulations to all the winners for their hard fought victories. The names will be posted below.
The CBSA was also able to raise $900 by raffling off an OB cue, as well as renew and expand their friends of the CBSA subscription package which costs $20 annually. More information on the mandate of the “friends of the CBSA” can be found by clicking HERE.
Mike Henderson Amateur- Men’s 9 Ball Champion (NB)
Theresa Hunter- Amateur Women’s 9 and 8 Ball Champion (NB)
Stuart MacTaggart- Junior 9 Ball Champion (ON)
Adrian Fragoso- Men’s Amateur 8 Ball Champion (ON)