Friday, August 25, 2006

APN announce Regional Championships 2006

Regional Championships 2006

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APN are pleased to announce the dates for the inaugural 2006 APN-Leagues Regional Championships. There will be 2 Tournaments played in sections, North and South, that will be played at Rileys Northampton and Rileys Harrow respectively.

With 159 potential players at both venues contributing to the Friday evening - Sunday night events, there will be an opportunity for 23 players from each section to advance to the APN National Championships in December where they will be joined by the 17 league winners + 1 wildcard for a 64 player field.

As well as the Regional Championships, APN will be hosting a variety of other smaller competitions over the weekend. This will include Break comps, Friday and Saturday night flyers (around £5/£10 entry) and a host of other activities.

Exact tournament format details will be released nearer the time when we have a better idea of how many players will be turning up.

Remember to bring any pool playing friends along for the weekend...there will be plenty of action on the outside tables that will keep all players busy.

Any enquiries for these events should be directed to APN on 01305 779 596, or via email at:

Please confirm your attendance as soon as possible!!

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

World Cup of Pool - Preview

PartyPoker.Com World Cup of Pool - Preview.

The first ever World Cup of Pool takes place this week at the Newport Centre in Newport, South wales. Thirty two 2 man teams will be battling for the title and a share of the $250,000 prize fund. Such world class stars as Ronnie O'Sullivan, Steve Davis, Efren Reyes, Francisco Bustamante, Niels Feijen, Earl Strickland and Thomas Engert will be representing their countries for the first time on an international stage.

The event runs from 22nd-27th August 2006 at The Newport Centre, South Wales and is sponsored by PartyPoker.Com and promoted by Matchroom Sport.

The tournament is a single elimination scotch doubles event. This means that players will be taking alternate shots within their team. It will be excellent for the 31 hours of TV coverage to be broadcast later in the year and the packed audiences in the Newport Centre.

First Round matches (Race to 9)

Tuesday 22nd August 2pm
1. Thailand v Canada
2. Qatar v Malaysia
3. Czech Republic v Poland

Tuesday 22nd August 7pm
4. Philippines v Malta
5. Taiwan v India
6. England B v Korea

Wednesday 23rd August 2pm
7. Hungary v Russia
8. Hong Kong v Sweden
9. Japan v Indonesia

Wednesday 23rd August 7pm
10. Spain v England A
11. Singapore v USA
12. Wales v Germany

Thursday August 24th 2pm
13. Ireland v Finland
14. South Africa v Italy
15. Vietnam v Croatia

Thursday August 24th 7pm
16. Scotland v Holland

Second round matches will commence Thursday evening and will be completed on Friday. All quarter-final matches are played on Saturday with the semi-finals and final on Sunday.

Prize Money
US$60,000 x 1
Runners Up:
US$30,000 x 1
US$16,000 x 2
US$10,000 x 4
Last 16:
US$5,000 x 8
Last 32:
US$3,000 x 16
* All prize money is split between the two players

Hot favouriates for the event are the Phillipines with Reyes and Bustamante. A good bet for me is the USA side of Morri and Strickland who have played ths format together before very successfully in the Mosconi Cup. Other sides to look for are Holland, Germany.

If you want a good bet on an outsider I would pick Wales (McKenna & Davies) or Czech Republic (Hybler & Gavenciak).

Out of the two English teams I think that the B team will actually progress further with both Peach and Davis having had experience in the Mosconi Cup.

Come and visit Billiards Boutique at the World Cup of Pool - we have an exhibition stand on Saturday and Sunday so come along and say hello, if anyone is interested we have four sets of tickets for saturday and sundays play. Come along to the stand and pick up a voucher or find out more about APN Leagues.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Snooker Cue Splicing Techniques

After selection the butt timber is then spliced onto the ash shaft, this is done in one of two ways, by machine or by hand. The two methods produce cues of very different appearance.

Machine splicing is less expensive than hand splicing but is a very effective way of adding the butt timber to the shaft. The butt timber (usually ebony) is cut to provide four points, which are glued into four slots machined into the shaft timber. The finished cue has a distinctive four point pattern where the butt meets the shaft.

Hand splicing is the traditional method developed by Peradon for splicing the butt timber to the shaft. The shaft has two flats planed on opposite sides of the butt end. The hardwood butt timber is glued to these flats. The cue is then rotated through 90 degrees and two further flats are planed and two more pieces of butt timber glued into place. The cue is then shaped to produce the distinctive four rounded point pattern where the butt meets the shaft.

The appearance of both machine and hand spliced cues can be enhanced with additional exotic wood splices or coloured veneers.

This material adapted from the Peradon Cues sales brochure.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Developing Professional Snooker

Snooker has declined over the last decade from it's glory days in the mid-eighties. There are a number of factors that have brought this about and there are also a number of key things that need to be addressed in order for the professional game to develop.

World Snooker, until the management of Sir Rodney Walker, was in turmoil and losing money all over the place. Walker has come in and steadied the ship, for the first time in a few years World Snooker made a profit last year. If the game in general is in a healthy position financially then this only serves to help all other aspects, increased prize money, better sponsor bargaining power to name just two.

The loss of Imperial Tobacco was a huge loss for the sport and knowing this was going to happen in advance I am surprised that World Snooker did not plan for this in advance and try to cover the gap in funding. coming on board for the World Championships and Saga Insurance for the Masters are a real step in the right direction. But prize money has dwindled greatly over the past few years (athough is up this year). The game needs more sponsors, but then that could be said for most professional sports (except the likes of Golf, Football and Tennis).

In my opinion it would be easier to find sponsors if the game was given a more global feel. The only events outside of the UK are The Malta Cup and China Trophy. With the massive expanse of the game out in China and the far east it may be an idea for more tournaments in that continent. Also Germany hold a large invitational event each year why not turn that intoa ranking event. If these invitational tournaments were given more status (much like the I Trophy this year) then sponsorship and TV revenues increase.

I am not trying to imply that it is easy to fid sponsors as it is not, but by creating a more geographic spread for tournaments new sponsors may be attracted due to the more global feel. Snooker has the best TV coverage of any cue sport worldwide both in it's physical production and in the professionalism of the whole team.

My Plan For Snooker!
  • 10 Month ranking season
  • 1 main tour event per month
  • 10 Main Ranking events in total (9 + World Championships)
  • Smaller events that players can pick and choose to play in or not with ranking points 75% less than Main Tour events. These would be ideal for new tour players or players looking to improve ranking over a season.
  • Abolition of current seeding structure.
  • New structure of Top 16 plus 16 qualifiers (qualifying tournaments not seeded giving new/younger players a greater chance to progress.)
  • By having a two tier ranking tournament system it means more money and a greater number of players are able to make a living.

NI Trophy Quarter Final Results

Dominic Dale has continues his fantastic run by beating 2006 world champion Graeme Dott in the quarter-finals to reach the semi-finals of the Northern Ireland Trophy. In the semi he will now play Ronnie O'Sullivan.

Quarter-Final Results (winner in red)

Graeme Dott 2 v 5 Dominic Dale
Ryan Day 1 v 5 Ronnie O'Sullivan
Ken Doherty 1 v 5 Ding Junhui
Shaun Murphy 4 v 5 Stephen Lee

Semi-final match up

Dominic Dale v Ronnie O'Sullivan

I think Dale has his work cut out in this match, Ronnie has looked fluid and relaxed all week and it may be one match too far for Welshman Dale. My prediction 6-2 O'Sullivan.

Ding Junhui v Stephen Lee

Ding has fired in this tournament and has looked excellent of late with his maturity and conidence growing all the time. I think he will prove too much for te resurgent Lee who has also put in some good performances. My prediction 6-4 Junhui.

Friday, August 18, 2006

NI Trophy - Quarter Finals set

The quarter finals in the NI Trophy are set with a number of top seeds being eliminated last night.

Mark Williams, Matthew Stevens, Stephen Hendry and John Higgins all fell last night in some very close matches.

Last 16 Results (winner in red)

Graeme Dott 5 v 4 Mark Selby
Gerard Greene 4 v 5 Dominic Dale
Mark Williams 2 v 5 Ryan Day
Matthew Stevens 2 v 5 Ronnie O'Sullivan
Ken Doherty 5 v 4 Stephen Maguire
Ding Junhui 5 v 3 John Higgins
Shaun Murphy 5 v 4 Neil Robertson
Stephen Lee 5 v 4 Stephen Hendry

Billiards Boutique prediction: 1st) Ronnie O'Sullivan 2nd) Ding Junhui

Thursday, August 17, 2006

NI Trophy Second Round Results

The second round is complete at the Northern Ireland trophy with a few shock defeats for the worlds top 16 players.

Full Results (winner in red)

G. Dott 5 v 3 J. Burnett
A. Carter 2 v 5 M. Selby
S. Davis 2 v 5 G. Greene
P. Ebdon 3 v 5 D. Dale
M. Williams 5 v 1 A. Norman
B. Hawkins 1 v 5 R. Day
M. Stevens 5 v 0 M. King
R. O'Sullivan 5 v 4 S. Pettman
K. Doherty 5 v 4 J. Wattana
S. Maguire 5 v 2 M. Dunn
A. Hamilton 3 v 5 D. Junhui
J. Higgins 5 v 3 R. Milkins
S. Murphy 5 v 4 T. Pengfei
N. Robertson 5 v 3 N. Bond
S. Lee 5 v 2 D. Roe
S. Hendry 5 v 3 I. McCulloch

The third round has started today and results will be updated as we get them.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Useful Links

Welcome to the link page here you will find a list of useful and interestng world wide web links. All of these links are external and Billiards Boutique cannot be held responsible for the content.

Pool and Snooker Links
Snooker Discussion forum
3 ball rack
UK 9 Ball Pool Leagues
USA Pool Leagues
Pool Table Felt
Bank Shot Training Aid
Ace's Web World: Pool and Billiards
Ghost Ball Training Device
Solid Wood Pool Tables
8 Ball Secrets
Cuestars: Snooker For All
110 Sports Management
Billiards & Barstools
3 Cushion Billiards
German 9-ball Tour
AE Schmidt Billiards
Custom Pool Tables
New and Antique Pool Tables
ABC Billiards
Advanced Billiards and Cues
Professional Billiards Match Videos
Addicted to Pool
Australian 8-ball Federation
Allied Billiards
American Heritage Billiards
Aberdeen 9-ball Association
Antique Pool Tables
Antique Billiard Tables
Arbroath Pool League
Top Quality Billiard Slate
Artistic Pool
Table Sport Products
B & W Billiards
Barenada's Pool Page
Bear Log Billiards
Beverley Pool League
Mexican Billiards
Billiard Art

Custom Pool Cues
AE Cues
Raven Custom Cues
Arnot Custom Cues
Mike Gulyassy Custom Cues
Bama Cues
Custom Handcrafted Cues

Professional Player Sites
John "The Jackal" Ouwehand
Ralf "The Kaiser" Souquet
Allison "The Duchess of Doom" Fisher
Allan Lys
Andy "The Magic Man" Segal

Other Websites
Magazine Subsciption Deals
Blog Directory
Bar Stools
Submit Your Website
Frequently Asked

NI Trophy First Round Results

The First Round is complete at the first snooker ranking vent of the season. The NI Trophy is being held as a ranking event for the firt time at the Waterfront Hall in Belfast.

First Round Results (winner in red)

David Gray 2 v 5. Jamie Burnett
Mark Selby 5 v 4. Tony Drago
Joe Swail 1 v 5. Gerard Greene
Marco Fu 3 v 5. Dominic Dale
Joe Perry 4 v 5. Andrew Norman
Ryan Day 5 v 1. Mark Allen
Mark King 5 v 3. Rory McLeod
Alan McManus 2 v 5. Stuart Pettman
James Wattana 5 v 4. Jimmy Michie
Michael Holt 2 v 5. Mike Dunn
Ding Junhui 5 v 4. Paul Davies
Robert Milkins 5 v 2. Rod Lawler
Andy Hicks 3 v 5. Tian Pengfei
Nigel Bond 5 v 1. Michael Judge
Stuart Bingham 4 v 5. David Roe
Ian McCulloch 5 v 1. Matthew Couch

All second round ties commence today and can be seen on Eurosport.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Empire Pool Tour grows in strengh

The Empire Pool Tour ran it's second event this last weekend n Harrow with 100 top 8-ball players turning up to participate in the event. Such notable players as Mika Immonen, Marcus Chamat and Ronnie O'Sullivan competed for a share of the £8000 prize money.

There were some early round shocks with none of the aforementioned players making the money stages.

It was left to tour founder and UK number 1 Daryl Peach to walk away with the £2000 first prize. He defeated Neil Raybone 10-7 in the final to take the winners cheque.

For more information visit:

Friday, August 04, 2006

Updates from IPT Victoria Qualifier

First Round Matches

Steve Higton 10-3 Jonathan Bushnell
Kevin Hew 10-5 Martinho Correia
Ben Davies 10-4 Imran Majid
Mark Gray 10-4 Andy Nicholson

Second Round

Tony Drago 10-8 Steve Higton

We will update more results when we have them!

IPT World OPen Qualifiers

The first UK IPT World Open qualifier has started with a disappointing 11 player field. Billiards Boutique are being represented by Martinho Correia who recently won two of our satellite qualifiers.

Other players in the draw are:

J. Bushnell
T. Drago
B. Davies
M. Gray
K. Hew
S. Higton
T. Judet
I. Majid
A. Nicholson
A. Worthington

Mark Gray former main tour snooker pro has only ever played two 8-ball events and won them bot so he will be dangerous. We spok to Martinho yesterday and he played 17 sets against Tony Drago in practice and beat him 15 sets - 2. WE know he is playing well and hope that this time he can do the business.

Online coverage can be found here:

IPT WO-9 Qualifier

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Predator 5k Series Pool Cues

We have now finally completed the task of adding all of the brand new Predator 5K Series Pool Cues to the Billiards Boutique website. Not only that but we also have the prices. All of the new cues and shafts are available now on pre-order only. The cues will be available towards the end of August.

If you want a high performance and beautiful looking cue then look no further then the new Predator 5K series. Be one of the first people to own these amazing cues.

Pictured left is the Predator 5K2 Pool Cue.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Busy Day at the Office

Yet another busy day for us today with a number of updates being made to the site. As you can see all Peradon Snooker Cues are 15% Off during August.

Andy has spent the day adding the brand new Predator 5k series cues to the site along with the second generation shafts.

We don't even have prices yet and can't get the cues until the end of August but they look fantastic - not happy with the small images at present they need a bit of tweaking but the large images are excellent, you need to click on the small image!

Getting ready for our trip to the World Cup of Pool, we have a stand there for the two days at the weekend 26th - 27th August. Come and visit us - also tickets are free! Contact Matchroom Sport or the Newport Centre direct and they will get them sent out.

Look out for more news about this inaugural event.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Win a $250.00 Billiards Boutique shopping spree with The Snooker Forum

The Northern Ireland trophy is the first ranking event of the new season and runs from 13th-20th August at the Belfast Hall. are pleased to announce that they will be sponsoring The Snooker Forum 2006-2007 prediction contest. The overall winner at the end of the season will receive a $250.00 shopping spree on to spend on what they like!

Get predicting now and it could be you in may that receives this excellent prize.

The Snooker Forum Prediction contest.

The first round draw

David Gray v. Jamie Burnett
Mark Selby v. Tony Drago
Joe Swail v. Gerard Greene
Marco Fu v. Dominic Dale
Joe Perry v. Andrew Norman
Ryan Day v. Mark Allen
Mark King v. Rory McLeod
Alan McManus v. Stuart Pettman
James Wattana v. Jimmy Michie
Michael Holt v. Mike Dunn
Ding Junhui v. Paul Davies
Robert Milkins v. Rod Lawler
Andy Hicks v. Tian Pengfei
Nigel Bond v. Michael Judge
Stuart Bingham v. David Roe
Ian McCulloch v. Matthew Couch

World Champion to visit Harrow

The Empire Pool Tour have announced that former World 9-ball champion Mika Immonen will be participating in the EPT Harrow Open over the weekend of 12-13th of August. The field is expected to sell out and a number of top pro's from Europe will be here to battle for the £8,000 in guaranteed prize money.

Another notable former world champion that has signed up for the event is former World snooker champion Ronnie O'Sullivan.

The event will have a £2,000 first prize and any of the top players will fancy their chances, Mark Gray the EPT's last winner will be there to try and make it two out of two.