President's Message

31 Dec 2016

Hi All

This is by way of an end of year message for all members in the Oceania region. By now I am sure you know the 2017 Oceania Billiards & Snooker Championships will be hosted at the Commercial Club in Albury 8th – 18th March 2017.

The Entry forms for all the events to be held during this time are now available on the OBSF website.

The Calendar of events as been posted for some time now and can be seen here. In addition to those advertised events I am pleased to advise that there will be an U21 Test Match on the 7th March between Australia and New Zealand and it has been confirmed that 5 players will be traveling to the Championships from New Zealand. Furthermore it is highly likely that there will be 4 NZ female players contesting the Women's Championship so there is a strong likelihood that we will also host a Trans-Tasman Test for the Women.

This was for many years an annual event but in recent times not been able to be held during to player numbers. So we are hopeful this can be contested once again, and who knows continued as an annual event in the future.

There has been some conjecture regarding a Women's event being held in Singapore which clashes with the Oceania Championships. A lot of misinformation has been proffered by a number of people who are not aware of any of the salient facts regarding this clash. Firstly, it needs to be noted that the event in Singapore is not recognised by the IBSF and is run by a private company registered in England. At no time did this body, the WLBSA, approach either the ABSC or the OBSF regarding the hosting of such an event in what is the historic period for the OBSF Championships. The ABSC has been negotiating with the major sponsor for the Oceania Championships from last year and when no other nomination was forthcoming finalised the arrangements including special deals for accommodation for the players attending the Championships. When it was realised that there was a clash I spoke via Maxime Cassis to the organisers of the event in Singapore and asked if they could move their event out 1 week so the Oceania females players would not be put it bad situation regarding what event to participate in.

I received a reply that basically said no, and made a number of statements that they had communicated with the ABSC regarding the event and that there was no reply. They also stated that our historic dates were in February as they were earlier this year 2016. We all know this to be incorrect as it was moved to February this year because Easter was in the middle of March and we couldn't host a Championship during that time. Prior to that, if anybody had checked they would have seen it was in March.

That all being said it needs to be recognised that the ABSC and the OBSF put a lot of time and effort into hosting the Championships for its members and trust that the players will support their efforts by attending this year's Championship. The winners of each of all the Championships will as usual earn a spot at the IBSF World Championships in Malta in November 2017.

This year there will be a Welcoming dinner that will be held on the evening of the 11th March and for this there will be a cost of A$30 per head to include a 3 course meal. If you wish to attend this we need you to indicate this when completing your entry form so the club can make all the necessary arrangements for the dinner.

The AGM for the OBSF will be on the 14th March at 2pm in the club, details of where will be advised soon. Notices for this will be sent out in due course subject to the Constitution.

As you might be aware also this year the main competition which carries a WPBSA Main Tour card for 2 years will be open to Men and Women from within the region in answer to the female players request last year. I trust there will be some female entries and I wish them all well in the Championship.

Before closing I would like to thank all the sponsors Shender, Strachan 6811, Aramith, CL&S. Mounties, and the Commercial Club Albury. The Referees for their tireless contribution to our sport without whom our sport would be the poorer, and finally the all those people who give so generously of their time to ensure our players get opportunities to play our great sport both domestically and internationally.

I would like to take this opportunity sincerely wish all the players and officials from within the Oceania region a very Merry Christmas and a happy, healthy and successful 2017.

Hope to see you all in Albury in March.

Best Regards

Barrie Jones

President OBSF