In recent years there have been calls for snooker to be included as part of the Olympic Games, however it is often forgotten that snooker was a founder sport at the inaugural Paralympic Games in Rome 1960, held as recently as 1988.
Contested at seven Paralympic Games in total during this period, the most successful snooker Paralympian would be the great Michael Shelton, who claimed a hat-trick of gold medals from 1964-1972.
Snooker was one of a number of sports including darts, punchball, skittles and archery that were introduced by neurologist Ludwig Guttman at the National Spinal Injuries Centre and Stoke Mandeville Hospital in 1944. Guttman would subsequently be responsible for the organisation of the Stoke Mandeville Games for paraplegic people in 1948, an event that would ultimately pave the way for the Paralympic Games 16 years later.
It is the long-term vision of WDBS to see snooker reclaim its rightful place at the Paralympic Games in the future through the staging of regular competitions and identifying people from around the world with disabilities who play our sport.
|John Newton / Aroido Ruschioni
|Claude Markham / George Portelli
|Giovanni Ferraris / George Portelli
In December 2023, snooker was contested for the first time at the prestigious World Abilitysport Games in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand.
The staging of the event represented a significant milestone for disability snooker at multi-sport games as WDBS targets a return to the Paralympic stage.