Tag: Graham Bonnell

Parris Cues Champion of Champions 2018: Tournament Information

The full match schedule for the Parris Cues Champion of Champions 2018 is now available.

As always, the latest results and group standings will be published throughout the weekend at MySnookerStats via the following links:

As previously announced, the winners of each group competition will also be invited to play at the 2019 WSF Championships in Dubai.

Read more about the event here.

Field Confirmed for Parris Cues Champion of Champions

Later this month World Disability Billiards and Snooker (WDBS) will host the Parris Cues Champion of Champions for the first time and we can today reveal the 24 players who will be competing in the event.

To be held at the South West Snooker Academy in Gloucester on the weekend of 20-21 October 2018, the event will comprise six tournaments with the most successful four players from each of the regular WDBS classification groups between November 2015 – May 2018 invited to participate.

Each of the tournaments will begin with a round-robin group stage, with the top two players at the end of the group to contest a title match to decide the Champion of Champions for each classification.

The players who will be competing are:

Groups 1-2

Graham Bonnell, Craig Welsh, Daniel Lee, Tony Southern

Group 3

Daniel Blunn, Nigel Coton, William Thomson, Andrew Harper

Groups 4-5

Raja Subramanian, Andy Johnson, David Church, David Weller

Group 6

Daniel Harwood, Leroy Williams, Rich Yendle, Andrew Galley

Group 7

Paul Smith, Nick Neale, Mike Gillespie, David Baker

Group 8

Shabir Ahmed, Blake Munton, Lewis Knowles, Richard Gott

As previously announced, each of the six winners will receive an invitation to compete at next year’s WSF Championships in Dubai, with the costs of their travel and hotel to be sponsored by 360Fizz.

The winners will also receive the first prize and be presented with the Nick Oliver Trophy by John Parris, of the event sponsor Parris Cues. Each group winner will also receive their own trophy to take home and keep.

The Parris Cues Champion of Champions will become an annual event on the calendar, with the top performing players from each group over a two-year period qualifying for the event.

Spectators are encouraged to attend and support the players competing in the event.

Daniel Lee Wins in Wales

Daniel Lee emerged victorious from a record-breaking field of 55 players to win this year’s Welsh Open in Cwmbran last weekend following a 2-1 victory against Aslam Abubaker.

Organised by World Disability Billiards and Snooker (WDBS), the event returned to Redz Snooker Club following a successful first staging a year ago and once again welcomed players with a range of disabilities including physical, hearing, visual and learning disabilities who competed against each other across the weekend.

Incredibly, the quarter-final line-up included players from seven of the eight WDBS classification groups (2-7), in a demonstration of the strength in depth across the field and the inclusivity of what was the biggest WDBS field to date in its three-year history.

Title hat-trick for Lee

Aylebury’s Daniel Lee, previously successful at Groups 1-2 WDBS tournaments in Wolverhampton and Preston during the past 12 months, made it through to his first mixed-classification final following victories against Ron Allen, David Moore and another former WDBS champion David Church in the knockout rounds.

There he would face fellow wheelchair player Aslam Abubaker, who stunned the defending champion Daniel Blunn 3-1 at the last 16 stage before adding the scalps of Lewis Knowles and three-time Group 6 champion Dan Harwood to qualify for the showpiece match.

In keeping with the rest of the weekend, the final proved to be a dramatic affair which swung one way and then the other, eventually coming down to the final colours in a deciding frame. Ultimately it was Lee who would prevail after Abubaker had looked set to win before snookering himself on what would have been the match-ball pink when attempting to clear.

The highest break of the six-red competition was 43, made by Nick Neale during the group stage.

New doubles winners crowned

Elsewhere the Mixed Classification Doubles event saw Richard Gott and Danielle Findlay claim victory following a 2-0 success against Graham Bonnell and newcomer Peter Yelland.

The competition, which included players who had not qualified for Sunday’s knockout rounds following the previous day’s group matches, saw 13 pairs battle it out for the title and Gott make it third time lucky having twice finished as runner-up at the Hull Open, while Findlay claimed her second victory following success at the Challenge Cup in Belgium earlier this year.

The weekend was generously supported by tournament sponsors FizzThinks360 and RBF Comms, with Jonny ‘Fizz’ Welch on hand throughout the final Sunday to present the medals and participation certificates to the competitors.

The event was also attended by leading World Snooker referee and tournament director Paul Collier, who kindly donned his white gloves to officiate several matches during the round robin stages.

WDBS would also like to thank all of the players who travelled to compete in the event and our hosts Redz Snooker Club for their support during the weekend.

View full tournament results from the main competition via MySnookerStats here.

View event photos at our Facebook page here.

View the updated WDBS Roll of Honour here.

Record Event for WDBS

World Disability Billiards and Snooker (WDBS) staged its biggest event to date last weekend at the South West Snooker Centre, Gloucester.

The second Open Disability Snooker Championship following last year’s inaugural event saw entries almost double in number across five disability classification groups (groups 1-5) from a year ago. As in 2015, three main competitions were contested, together with a Challenge Cup event for players not qualifying for the knockout stages.

First the first time at a WDBS event, prize money was offered to the finalists of each category, as well as the overall high break with the support of Renishaw plc and the Paul Hunter Foundation.

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Graham Bonnell successfully defended his title

The Group 1/2 event for wheelchair players saw Oxted’s Graham Bonnell complete a successful defence of the title that he won almost a year ago with a 2-0 victory against Glyn Lloyd in the final.

Bonnell, who earlier this year visited the Alexandra Palace and received a backstage tour at the Masters following his win last year, won all three of his group matches for the loss of just two frames, before defeating Mark Parsons and Lloyd for victory.

Group 3 saw a new winner crowned as Nigel ‘Bandit’ Coton from Goulceby, Lincolnshire came through to claim his first WDBS title.

The 54-year-old, who plays with one arm following nerve damage as a result of a motorbike accident at the age of 17, first defeated 2015 winner Daniel Blunn 2-1 in a dramatic semi-final, before repeating the feat against last year’s runner-up Andrew Harper in the decisive match.

For defeated semi-finalist Blunn however, there was some consolation as he claimed the overall high break prize of £100 provided by the Paul Hunter Foundation, with his opening day run of 49.

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Nigel Coton won his first WDBS competition

The Group 4/5 competition saw a second player defend their Gloucester title from last year as India’s Raja Subramanian saw off newcomer David Moore to take victory.

With six breaks over 30 during the weekend, he survived a close match against Cwmbran’s Adam Leighton in the quarter-finals, before defeating countryman Vishal Malhotra in the semi-finals and Moore for the title.

Subramanian will next be in action at the 2016 World Billiards Championship, which runs until 26th October in Leeds.

Finally, the Challenge Cup was won by Daniel Lee, who edged out Birmingham’s Russell Broomhall in a one-frame final.

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Raja Subramanian a winner again in Gloucester

For the first time the WDBS also held a Learning Disability Snooker Festival with the support of Special Olympics Gloucestershire. The event included a formal six-red tournament, which saw Rich Yendle defeat David Mac to claim the title. Residents from Leonard Cheshire, who had previously visited the World Championship in Sheffield earlier this year, also visited during the festival and enjoyed opportunities to both watch and play snooker.

As at previous events, the tournament was supported throughout by WPBSA World Snooker coaches Tim Squires, Bob Hill and Danielle Findlay.

WDBS Chairman Nigel Mawer said: “As the Chairman of the WDBS I am really pleased by how we are progressing. We have moved from fewer than 20 entries last year here in Gloucester, to 34 this year and had some long, but rewarding days.

“What I really like about this sport is that you have got players from one category acting as helpers for players in other categories. It is absolutely amazing the camaraderie that is coming out.

“I am very pleased as to where we are, but there is still a long way to go and a lot of work to do.”

Rich Yendle took the G6 title

Rich Yendle took the G6 title

WDBS director Jonathan Adams added: “I think that we have shown fantastic development over the last 12 months and I think that our players who have been with us since the start have been pleasantly surprised as to how we have grown, both on and off the table.

“The pathways that we are putting in place behind the scenes to develop the sport will only enhance players opportunities in the future. We have new talent coming in, both from abroad and within the UK, which is strengthening the classes and can only raise our profile as we grow as a governing body.

“When we have got players helping each other along the way, it gives the feeling of a family and ultimately snooker is accessible for so many people and that is the beautiful thing that I think we display better than anybody else.”

The next WDBS tournament will be the Hull Open which is set to run on 11-13 November 2016 at the Tradewell Snooker Centre, Hull. The event will be the second WDBS event open to players with visual or hearing disabilities (Groups 7-8) and will be supported by prize fund sponsors Hudgell Solicitors and Think Telecom.

As at all WDBS events, players with all disabilities are encouraged to attend the Friday open day and receive free practice and coaching.

You can view photos from the event on our Facebook page at each of the following links:

WDBS Classification Guide: Group One

World Disability Billiards and Snooker events are open to players with a wide range of disabilities, but how do we decide which players will play in each event and who they will play?

To explain, starting from this week we take a look at the WDBS classification system and hear from some of the players who have played in our events so far about their snooker experiences.

WDBS Disability Classification

The WDBS classification system comprises 36 individual profiles, which have then been allocated to eight groups, used to categorise events.

The system has been taken from the English Federation of Disability Sport (EFDS) profile toolkit and revised to suit snooker and billiards.

Group One (profiles 1-7)

Wheelchair profiles

Profile 01: Almost no use in four limbs. Need to use a power wheelchair, or a manual wheelchair.

Profile 02: Almost no use in four limbs, but can bend elbows. May use a power wheelchair or a manual wheelchair.

Profile 03: Wheelchair user with very poor balance and inability to grip and release objects.

Profile 04: A person with almost no use in all four limbs, but with good trunk control. Able to push a wheelchair in some way.

Profile 05: A wheelchair user who has difficulty controlling their limbs when trying to perform any activity.

Profile 06: A wheelchair user with poor trunk control and slightly weak hands, or difficulty in controlling arms.

Profile 07: A wheelchair user with good use in one arm, may use a power wheelchair or manual Wheelchair.

Group one is the first of two classifications (as well as group two) for wheelchair users, either power or manual.

The group is made up of six disability profiles (1-6), in addition to a seventh which can fall under either group one or two depending on whether the player can make a bridge with their leading hand.

At the WDBS events held to date, both groups one and two have competed together in events for wheelchair users. Of the two wheelchair groups, players who fall under group one are the most affected by their disability when playing across all groups and have therefore received a 14 point start when playing against players from group two.

Player’s view

Surrey’s Graham Bonnell has competed in WDBS events as a group one player, winning the group one/two event at the inaugural WDBS Open Disability Snooker Championship last November in Gloucester.

From Oxted, Bonnell was involved in a motorcycle accident in 1983 when he was just 18, in which he suffered a broken neck. A few years later he was invited to play snooker at the local British Legion and has since gone on to captain a team in his local league.

Bonnell competes in WDBS events as a profile six player (and therefore group one), as a result of his incomplete quadriplegia.

wdbsprofile6

“My bridge hand is of a group one player, but the grip in my back hand which holds the cue is not of group one or not strong enough for group two,” explained Bonnell.

“I can usually get down on the shot quite well, nearly as well as an able-bodied player.”

As well as playing the game for enjoyment, Bonnell has also found that snooker has become a key part of his everyday life from a physical perspective:

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“I have been playing snooker for over 20 years and do now find that it helps with my day to day living,” said Bonnell. “For example leaning over the table to play the shots helps with spasm and to keep my body trunk more supple.

“I usually play four times per week, but when I don’t play for a week or two, I know all about it! It becomes so much harder to play.”

And with the 2016 Open Disability Snooker Championship around the corner this October, Bonnell is looking forward to defending his title and catching up with the WDBS team:

“So far I have only played in one event (Gloucester 2015), which went well as I won!” continued Bonnell.

“I also enjoyed visiting Sheffield for this year’s Disability Day and getting to meet more people, as was the case at the Friday Open Day at the Woking Open in May.

“It has also been good getting to know the WDBS team and I am looking forward to seeing everyone again in Gloucester this year.”

You can learn more about the English Federation of Disability Sport and their recently launched #TogetherWeWill campaign to help encourage disabled people to become more active.

Come back next week to read more about our classification system as we turn to Group Two players…

Bonnell Enjoys Masters Visit

The WDBS was pleased to welcome Graham Bonnell to the 2016 Dafabet Masters last week at the Alexandra Palace.

Bonnell won his category in Gloucester last November

Bonnell won his category in Gloucester last November

Winner of the Group 1/2 event at the 2015 Open Disability Snooker Championship in Gloucester last November, Bonnell was invited to see the matches between John Higgins and Liang Wenbo, and Neil Robertson and Marco Fu on Wednesday.

Between sessions, he was also given a guided tour of the venue by Master of Ceremonies Rob Walker, with the chance to watch the likes of Jimmy White and Mark Allen in action on the practice tables, as well as see the main arena and media centre.

From Oxted, Surrey, Bonnell was rewarded for his performances at the inaugural WDBS event, which saw him drop just one frame on his way to victory in his category at the South West Snooker Academy.

Graham watches Jimmy White on one of the practice tables

Graham looks on as former Masters champion Jimmy White pots balls on one of the practice tables

A fan of snooker for over 30 years, Graham was involved in a motorcycle accident in 1983 when he was just 18, in which he suffered a broken neck. Some years later he was invited to play snooker at the local British Legion and has since gone on to captain a team in his local league.

Upon hearing about the formation of the WDBS and the Open Disability Snooker Championship online, Graham decided to enter the event and eventually triumphed with a 3-0 victory against Glyn Lloyd in the final.

To read more about the tournament, including full knock-out results, please click here.

Click here for more photos from Graham’s visit to the Dafabet Masters.