Tuesday, 22 March 2011

FUry straight pool champion plus more !

It’s been a good few weeks, I would have liked a little better, but that’s pool.  I’ve been very consistent this year so far.  I arrived in USA mid-January and played DCC (Derby City Classic), picked up 1st and 2nd in the Straight Pool and Fat Boy 10 Ball challenge, and lost in the semi final at the World 8 Ball Championship in February.  At Valley Forge,  I played really good to reach 5th place in the 10 Ball Players’ Championships.  After 12 hours straight of playing with no breaks, I got a little tired in my last match with SVB and lost 10-8.  It’s actually the first time he’s beaten me on the 9ft table, but I suppose he’s got to win eventually.  I was down 6-2 and came back to draw level at 7-7, but I missed a good chance to go in front and it cost me the match in the end.  Big positives from the tournament, I was breaking so good… much improved break and was hitting them great with control consistently, so that excites me for future tournaments.  Congrats to Ralf Souquet on becoming the champion, ever so consistent… and even though he didn’t play his best game in final, he always finds a way to win :-)

I did manage to win the Fury Straight Pool Challenge at Valley Forge beating John Schmidt in the final.  I didn’t play good due to tiredness and it was cold in the room, but any win is great.  That’s my second straight pool title this year… not bad to say I rarely play straight pool.  I have only ever entered 6 straight pool tournaments, I won 4 of the 6 and placed 2nd and 9th, so maybe this year I should compete in the World Straight Pool Championships. Thanks to Fury for putting on a great tournament and all the hard work they do to make it happen.

This weekend gone, I played the NYC 9 Ball Championships.  It was a good field and good payout plus calcutta.  I was playing really good but come up against Jason Klatt, was bad match, I made a few schoolboy errors, especially at hill-hill.  I missed an easy 3 ball, I didn’t look at the shot because I was just thinking of position for the next ball.  It cost me the match and probably the chance of the title.
I did come back strong on the losers’ side.  I played great in beating:  Stevie Moore, Eddie Abraham, John Morra, and a local guy Kong.  I made a bad mistake in the first rack against Saez.  He then run the next 3 racks to go up 4-0, then another mistake from me, it was curtains 7-1 loss… 3rd place not bad.
I was happy to see Jason Klatt take the title, much improved player this past year, well done Jason.

Like I said, it’s been a good few months for me.  I carried my form on since October last year and I know I can still get better, which excites me even more.  I know my best is still to come on a regular basis.

I go back UK tomorrow to see my family, play a 3 man team tournament on the weekend, and then get ready for Philippine Open.

Got a crazy schedule coming, lots of trips… Asia, Europe, America

I really enjoy my life in the States and love spending time with Angie.  She is an amazing person and her family and friends are great also.  Sometimes you get lucky and meet someone where you have so much common and everything just clicks and it’s happened for me, so I’m extremely happy with life.

Other news, my brand of polo shirts will be on sale soon.  Hope you will like them, thanks to Yannick and Adam for all their hard work.

Lastly, the pool world has recently experienced a great loss.  It was sad to hear the news of the passing of George Sansouci at the age of 39.  Top pool player from New York and was always friendly to me… always congratulated me on my recent successes… always a gentleman.  RIP George


Sunday, 6 March 2011

Semi finalist world 8 ball

Hi just laid by the pool in Dubai :-)
I had a good tournament in world 8ball championships was sad way to lose I didn’t get to shoot with it been winner break . I lose to Niels Fiejen 9-0 I win the lag break the balls really good but no luck on the break and Niels runs 6racks, he then breaks leaves me no shot I play a low percentage jump as I have no safety option I make a good hit but didn’t make the ball was real tough shot. And that was it niels run next 3 racks lol I never experienced a match like that before in my life I was just sitting in the chair for over 1 hour lol. He played great so it way cookie crumbles . Shame as I felt great and the match before in my quarter final I was at my absolute best I was down 2-1 to joven alba strong Filipino who beat efren Reyes earlier in the tournament . From 2-1 I run the whole march out without my opponent leaving The chair and more pleasing I very rarely had a straight forward table I was in tough situations and difficult layouts after the break but my 8ball knowledge really showed up which is good because under them conditions it rarely shows up 95% of the time the tables are laying easy after the break. If we played on smaller pockets and after break from outside the box then 8ball knowledge would show up much more which would suite me nicely.. But 4th place another top 4 finish in a major that’s around 10top 5 finishes now in 3years including 3 wins so it’s good that am so consistent in the main tournaments :-) against the best players in the world ! and good I’ve established myself in the game as one of the worlds best players that was my goal few years ago and everything gone to plan and the future is really exciting for me.. Am really enjoying my time in states and focusing on the bigger events I feel its the right thing to do for me as I have no problem getting mentally prepared for the big tournaments in the smaller Events I find myself lacking motivation and that leads to lazy play..

Bit bad news
I was supposed to fly to us masters yesterday but I forgot to update my esta visa to travel to united states after recieving a new passport few Weeks ago and because I arrived at airport late I didn’t get the esta visa number in time .. Reason I was late to airport because I waited all day to get paid for world 8ball then they said come back at 7.30pm I said fine my flight wasn’t until 12.50am Fujairah to Dubai airport is around 80mile drive hr 20mins so i had plenty of time .But when arrived at 7.30pm the guy wasn’t around with the money so we at to wait until 9:30pm to get paid.. Little annoyed if I got paid at 7.30pm I would have time to register for a esta visa and would have made us masters.. So i am sorry to barry behrem and everyone associated with us masters that i will not be attending i hope the tournaments a great success and hope to play next year..

On a happier note ! least I get to spend few more days in Dubai staying at the beautiful jumeirah beach hotel it’s paradise :-).. My next tournament will be valley vorge look forward to that ..

Also my own brand of shirts will be on sale soon hope you will like them I really like the designs :-)


Thursday, 6 January 2011

2010 Player of the Year :-)

Very happy to be announced player of the year.

Caps of a great end to 2010 its a long tradition that azbilliards and insidepoolmag have done these awards and to follow people like ,Efren Reyes,Francisco Bustamante,Earl Strickalnd,Jonny Archer,Shane Van Boeing,Ralf Souquet,Mika Immonen and many more great players makes you realise what a honour it is and to achieve this so early in my american pool career is a little overwhelming to be honest and still pinching myself I mean i first started playing in 2006 but most of that year was 8ball on the I.P.T so i didn’t seriously start playing 9ball and10ball etc until late 2006/2007 so to do what have done in such short space of time is mad really,not that am complaining am just trying to get my head around it, I know i have worked hard and studied the game and i knew my mental strength would take me far in the game but to achieve so much in past 3 years really is a dream..

It was only yesterday i was reflecting on what i done since 2007 and time as gone gone quick since then and as pool players we don’t get much time to reflect as the tournaments come thick and fast and we are one end of world week by week month by month ..

but to win world 10ball championships,derby city straight pool,world pool masters,2x euro tours,us open 9ball champion,captained great Britain to world team title,mosconi cup champions,mosconi cup most valuable player,World ranked no 1, win so many other smaller titles such as gb9 tour titles,us open bar table 10ball,and so many others and have so many high finishes in other majors like 5th us open,2nd challenge of champions,3rd Qatar open,5th world 10ball,3rd world 8ball, 3rd Guinness world series. its all been great few years and seems so long since the English 8ball days where i was pretty much in a slump and had no discipline but thankfully i found my place in the world where i belong and something i really love doing and because of that am enjoying life and giving pool 100% Plus i want to continue to get stronger and stronger in the years to come.When you get to experience winning major titles and representing europe in the mosconi cup or representing your country in the world team championships it makes all the hard work and hours of practise worthwhile there is no better feeling in the world.

but i really put all my success down to a few things 2006/2007 playing hours and days weeks and months of money matches in the (home of pool) which is Philippines that’s where i really learnt alot and in between these trips i was in America on the road gambling so it was all great learning and made me tougher mentally and made me accept defeat easier when i did lose..

Also i have so much to thank to my backer Dave Wright who really believed in me this guy funded me and took me all over world showed so much faith and confidence in me, putting me in money matches for high stakes in the Philippines and America 2006/07 when i had no experience in American pool he believed in me and i will be forever grateful because without him i wouldn’t be where i am now for sure ,and its amazing to think that i come away from Philippines and America always up on the money it was great times together that’s what you call gambling lol.. so big thanks to Dave wright its been a great ride pal and we proved all the doubters wrong you will always be one of my best mates and the guy i will always have to thank for where i am now so thanks so much once again Dave for all you do for me these past 5-6 years its really appreciated..

and also my rock s in my life my mum and dad for giving me this gift and pushing me to always stay grounded and keep working hard you are the best parents anyone could want and love you so much,and to my brothers craig and shane for all there support over years especially shane for all them hours of practise over past 18 years from english 8ball to american pool and to andy my cousin for bringing me into pool for helping me along.

and to my friends and fans who push me so hard to do better and other people that have contributed in my career to date the likes of frank and barbara grice,lee rigby, simon dvali,paul stoner,ben finch,and so many others appreciate it guys

also big mention to my home pool hall rileys,barnsley george vettas and all his staff thanks so much for allowing me my own table and everything you do for me at the club am really grateful its the best club in uk.

and currently i have a great team working for me thanks to dave carter for all you are doing for me at qsportsmanagement

and to predator cues for all the great support you show me and the sponsorship appreciate it alot

and lastly thanks to adam cousins for all hard work you have done on the website great job buddy and adam also works at Riley’s,barnsley see him there if you would like a website

thanks again for all messages and support i hope 2011 will be even better year

roll on..


Sunday, 19 December 2010

Mosconi cup and MVP :-) Plus inside look of team Europe :-)

First of all the past 2 months been a amazing for me on the table and of the table :-))
I changed my grip on the cue and couple of other small things pretty simple really but it took some time to get used to these changes it was around June that I realized these changes at to be done after seeing and speaking to couple of people I started to change the way I gripped the cue my game suffered badly at first from June to sept I couldn't string results together but I played some great matches and some awe full matches but the new grip was beating me mentally when close matches and under pressure, but then I take break for 2 weeks in pattaya and that gave me time to come back fresh and different outlook and figure what I needed to do,and that was just play freely and trust the new grip so that's what I did ,from sarejevo open everything changed I played great finished 3rd and now I was playing without any doubts or thoughts about the new grip this gave lot of confidence for us open and the rest is history 1st place there then 3rd at Steve mizerak championship, 2nd at gb9ball tour then 1st at euro tour spain then topped it off with winning mosconi cup team Europe and winning award MVP ( most valuable player).. It's ended up been the greatest year in pool for me and can't wait for next year :-)

But most of all because these changes am seeing the ball better my ,my tempo better,my pace around table better,and I hit the ball better it's a great combination to have on a consistent bases I feel like am reborn and playing with freedom like I did when was 17 years old and playing with natural ability again let's hope this continues for many years to come .

To the mosconi cup
Well what can I say besides what a team what a captain what support we had from all over Europe amazing ..
The week started awful for me as I was stuck in Spain for 36 hours alicante airport 2 cancelled flights and one big delay but all well I finally
arrive in London to my amazing hotel room at town hall hotel around 3am Tuesday ,but was up early to meet my team mates and captain and wifes and girlfriends for breakfast ,from word go we had busy schedule set out by Johan we practiced and bonded as a team did some
sightseeing ,eating good food :-) Wednesday was great day as we set out for the holly Grail Johan was the brains and inspiration behind this we all pledged our code of honor to the team all written down and signed by the players each of which the player would bring to the team
and table so it was important to not break our code in which none of us did was truly amazing team effort and Johan also set a plan out for
the team to get stronger each day and reach our goals another job done as we got stronger each day on and off the table awesome
,and at the end of the tournament Johan set up a meeting in his room with just the players and gave the most amazing speeches to each player and the whole team Johan awarded Karl with team europes flag the knights of 9ball well deserved and I won the code of honor award
which meant so much to me but again the whole team deserved this award too so I would like to dedicate to them !!
I don't want to give too much away about Johan because he coaches for a living but he defiantly the best man in the business and a great
captain anybody wanting help with there game and the mental aspects please get in touch with Johan rusyink he can be found on fb
:-) HE was the inspiration behind the teams victory

Also to all the wags of the team everyone one of you were amazing and played a great part in our victory your support and understanding wasn't unnoticed thanks again.you rocked it :-)

Also special mention to mine and Karl boyes manager Dave Carter he did so much for me and Karl but also the whole team really appreciate it Dave you played big part in the team thanks again :-) and excited to working with you next year and beyond !

To our 6th man the fans who were simply amazing the support and singing was just something dreams our made of it's simply the greatest mosconi cup ever by far all backed up by matchroom and all the players like mika and ralf who have appeared in nearly everyone,
the mosconi cup as grown so much in recent years and I believe will just grow and grow into something all none pool fans can relate to. So thanks again to the fans around Europe simply awesome I played pool a long time but I never experienced anything like at York hall before
gave me goosebumps tip to toe and inspired me so much:-)
And soon as I got home I watched the whole event back was great feeling it must have been awesome to watch it live :-)

To my team mates
Ralf arrived with injury to shoulder after a weeks treatment he was just about ready to play and even by his own high standards he said he didn't play his best he still gave everything to the team on and off the table and any half fit ralf souquet would still make any team in the world he bring calmness to the team and experience you can't buy,and he still walks away with a winning record and the honor to win the cup for us must be amazing feeling and fully deserved..legend

After a dodgy first half of year the last few months he been in great form and I knew he was going to play great this year at mosconi and boy did he after a rocky start day one from day two he just got stronger and stronger and made tough shot after tough shot one the greatest shot makers of all time and true inspiration to watch thanks pal u was great on and off the table..

What a guy if you look up loyalty and passion in the dictionary u will see nicks name right there he gives everything on and off the table and the fun factor of the table real team player one of the best and great all around player,he was unlucky in 3 hill hill matches same thing happen with me last year but he pulled rabbits out of the hat Saturday night when he played doubles with mika was a true great performance and was positive in every shot one off the greatest nights ever in pool the celebrations after that match never seen before :-)) and he got the best song also from the fans :-))

What can you say rookie of the team
Long time friend of mine and I even helped him get into American pool as I backed him on the ipt along with 3 other guys who knows what he would be doing now had he not played the ipt tour ,but I believed in him and talked few guys into chipping in and backing him on the ipt and the rest is history ,between 07/08 he was disillusioned with pool and life and what he wanted he even tried plastering course lol but then his manger Dave Carter come along helped him out and transformed his attitude and life and now he very professional and in the gym lost weight and putting the hours in and started to fulfill his potential the past 12 months been amazing for him and am so happy for him,and he played awesome in mosconi cup 5 wins from 6points as a rookie just amazing and suppose if it wasn't for my performance he would have been MVP but am sure if he continues his form he will be in las Vegas next year to defend the cup :-)

Like I said before Johan his the perfect coach and captain his honesty and brains were Hugh part on us winning I played under lot of captains and managers fro American pool and English pool but Johan tops them all if u need coaching or help mentally contact Johan on facebook himself and Alex lely do bootcamps two of the best coaches in the game if not the best ..

Finally the 6th man the fans
Thanks to everyone one of you,Was amazing ,inspired us to reach levels of play we produced when needed and sometimes pushed us over the line and thanks for been so well behaved and spending your hard earned money to come travel get hotels ,drinks etc really appreciate it,but next year we will need you again in las Vegas dec 8th-11th MGM grand please come in force without you we cannot win and you know the Americans will be out for blood next year so we need your support more than ever and hey las Vegas not bad place to go eh ..?:-)

Finally myself I suppose lol
Well last year I played pretty good but no points no rolls and we lost so this year I was pumped up soon as I knew I had made the team I prepared well I didn't drink for 4 weeks even after winning euro tour I still stay on the tea :-) and it all paid off, and yes I got involved with the press just like the Americans did I responded to some comments by the American team such as rodey Morris saying they had more heart than us which I totally disagree we have so much heart and the last 3-4 years as proved that as we only lost 1 mosconi cup in the last 5 and Europeans have dominated pool the last 3 years regards tournaments world champions ,us open ,etc proofs in the pudding which makes us the best pool players in the world!! And definatley the past 3 years nobody can argue with facts, yes the Filipinos might be more talented no doubt about but maybe we are more disciplined more professional,and great under pressure and great cueist, we play to our strenghs in Europe and it seems to be working very well for us.. People talk about money matches why don't we gamble well some people like it some people dont and Europeans just do what's best for them they don't need to gamble to put bread on the table, but it seems in America and Asia they do need to gamble which I have no problem with ,but I think it's just in there blood from early age unlike most Europeans! but I hate the hustling side of pool.. Personally I like money matches and I've played for money all over world and believe am the only westerner to walk away from Philippines up on the money after beating so many top players there for a lot of money something am very proud of ,but most of all it improved my game so much so I have lot to thank them for yes they are the best players in the world regards talent and knowledge of the game ,but I believe we are the best winners and play to our strenghs with a complete different style to Filipinos.and the results show our way works best at the moment!!
But everyone entitled to there opinion
And on another interview I did I was slightly misquoted on saying I feared for Dennis hatch safety all I said was it be interesting to see how Dennis copes with the crowd if things not going his way,and then I was asked about boxing as myself and Dennis are former amateur boxers .. I said well Dennis too heavy for me but tongue in cheek I said am sure the crowd would take care of me if it comes to a boxing match which people took offense to on some pool forums sadly. I don't have any problem with Americans especially the team they brought over they play hard and are pretty cool guys of the table but suppose they need to learn to lose a little better after trashing our practise room with drawing nasty things on our posters come on guys it's only a game your bigger than that !!!!
Anyway on a more positive note my own performance am chuffed with but all credit to the team for believe they gave me especially the captain and to win MVP was great icing on the cake beyond my wildest dreams..my match with hatch and svb will live with me forever .

Little information I will let out that nobody knows is if the match was 10-9 the next singles was captains picks for opposite team would have been Karl boys v Dennis hatch

And if the score was 10-10 it's was myself v Dennis hatch I would have been ready to play but very thankful ralf eneded the cup in style and the celebrations in the bar later were memorable to say the least

Thanks to everyone once again for a great year and a great end to the year Europe we are the champion

I am currently spending Xmas in America first time for me and very excited to see what it's like here over Xmas :-) and am hanging Out with the coolest people I ever met :-)...time to rest over Xmas period :-))

Hope you all have a wonderful Xmas and new year

Be safe


Thursday, 16 December 2010

spanish open champion euro tour

sorry for late blog reply it been mental few weeks

obviously delighted to win spain espeically with it been my last event as a full time tour member i will still try and make some events in 2011

i cant complain way i played i played great all the way through and carried my form on from us open so great way to end the year

as many of you know am going to states to try my hand there...

also big up to my brother in his first euro tour he finished 17th beating the likes of karl boyes along the way6 great effort

i will do mosconi cup report this week it was simply amazing :-) and so much to write about


Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Changes in Life :-)

First of all big well done to jayson shaw from scotland winning world blackball championship its sure a good ttile to win and will give him alot of confidence to win more world titles in the future :-)

also my trip to america recently was great and very relaxing and gave me alot of time to think of what am doing next year..

so i would like to officially announce that from january 2011 i will be based in america am excited but at same time little nervous its a big thing to leave your family behind and close friends but thankfully the internet powerful which will help keep in touch with them all time, Plus am sure i will try to get back to uk when time allows.The next 12 months going to be exciting for sure and am currently looking for appartment and a new set of golf clubs lol.I will be based around east coast and looking forward to spending my first xmas in states with some amazing people.

So to all my american friends i look forward to seeing more of you and also i will be available for tournaments,pool clinics,and pool exhibitions if your interested please contact my agent David Carter through Qsportsmanagement email david.carter@qsportsmanagement.com

Sadly for my fans in europe it means i will not be playing much pool in and around europe especially Euro tours and gb9ball tour but i thank you for all the support you all give me and hope it continues in the future,I will always represent England and great britain/Europe for rest of my whole life as am very proud to be british.

So i have lots of things to work on in next week to get ready for states and euro tour in spain then mosconi cup London exciting months ahead.

also dont forget you can follow me on facebook and twitter

i will update again next week.


Saturday, 13 November 2010

Steve Mizerak championship 3rd place

ok i got 3rd place carried my good form from us open, i really do love the equipment in american and the rules compared to euro tour its a different game much more safety and better tables with smaller pockets which suits me fine.. i was probably one roll of the ball from winning this tournament i was up 8-6 against earl and he got a sick roll against me the lowest ball the 3 ball stayed over the pocket but somehow the 10ball was right in front of it so i couldnt even hit the 3 by kicking at it so i forced to play DF.. if i could see the 3ball i was out to win 9-6 as the table was so easy.. and at 8-8 he very nearly scratched on his break only left me a jump shot combo which somehow stayed out i lose 9-8 then i win 2 matches with hohman and mika immonen only to lose in the losers final against shaun putman couple of loose easy saftey shots and shaun played really good at 4-0 i missed a tricky one ball besides that i didnt do anything wrng just no luck on the break as i hit them good but no friends this time but like i said putman played strong..so 3rd place pretty good and a result that moves me to the top of the money list for the year which am sure to win now i think..:-)

the venue and hotel was first class and the final match with earl and shaun can be seen on fox sports 13th december ,even though earl seems to have some mental issues at times it was great to see him playing great again and snap this tournament off so good for him and congratulations to shaun on a great tournament and thanks to seminole for a great tournament keep up the good work i will definatley play more of these events next year.

currently am relaxing on the east coast with a friend its been great to not think about pool and switch of from it as the last 2-3 months been crazy busy and none stop travel from asia-euro-america-europe-america lol good to finally relax and try and improve my golf game and relax at evenings with cool people and good restuarants and spending money on shopping which puts a big hole in the pocket ..

i have one more week here then i will go home watch my brother in his 2nd money match against adam smith 20th nov then after that i will practise hard for mosconi cup but before that i will go spain for euro tour which i will treat as good preparation for mosconi going to be great end to year i believe..:-)

also good luck to my good friend jayson shaw who is currently in the world blackball final for english pool :-)this kid so talented he a great future in pool if he wants it..