Tag: Peter Geronimo

Southern Classic 2019: Tournament Preview

The World Disability Billiards and Snooker (WDBS) circuit moves on to Swindon this weekend with the 2019 Southern Classic.

The three-day event takes place for the first time at Jesters Snooker Hall and will include the first tournaments of the year for players from WDBS classification groups 7-8 (sensory disabilities), as well at the latest competitions for our groups 6A and 6B (intellectual disabilities) players.

Open Day

Once again the weekend will begin on Friday with our regular open day, open to people with all disabilities who are encouraged to come along and try snooker regardless of previous experience. A mix of both technical coaching and fun activities will be provided by our team of WPBSA World Snooker coaches at the Go Green Energy Coaching Zone.

We are also looking forward to welcoming a number of special guests for the day, including local schools, team members from local charity Wiltshire Sight and also Robert Buckland QC MP (Conservative, South Swindon).

Groups 6A / 6B

As at last month’s Northern Classic in Stockport, players from both Groups 6A and 6B will compete across two days in separate competitions.

Group 6A is open to people who have an IQ under 75 and evidence of adaptive behaviour or social adaption and so far the group has seen victories for Mike Busst and Mohamed Faisal Butt since it was introduced late last year. Both players will be back in action at Jesters as part of a bumper 16-player field which will include a large contingent from Bristol.

Meanwhile over in Group 6B, which is made up of competitors who have an IQ over 75 and Autism Spectrum Disorder, the field includes the likes of former Northern Classic winner Leroy Williams and reigning Humber Classic champion Peter Geronimo who are among those looking to claim the title.

Joining them will be youngster Oliver Hanson and two newcomers Robert Brennan and Christopher Goldsworthy.

Group 7

Our latest Group 7 event for people with visual disabilities boasts a strong 11-player field which is set to include three debutants in Swindon.

Among the favourites to take the title will be Nick Neale and Paul Smith who between them have won eight of the nine tournaments staged for this group during the past three years, Mike Gillespie’s triumph in Derby back in 2017 the exception to the rule.

They will be joined by regular players including David Baker, and Ron Allen and Bob Craft, all of whom are former WDBS finalists.

Group 8

The biggest field during the weekend will be for the Group 8 deaf competition with 18 players set to battle it out to become champion.

Five-time champion Shabir Ahmed will head to Swindon as the man to beat on the back of his latest success in Hull last November, while the man who defeated him last year at the Champion of Champions Lewis Knowles will be hoping to stop him and claim his second WDBS title.

Former Hull Open champion Blake Munton, Welshman Adam Townsend and regular Tony Davies will be among the other familiar faces joining nine first-time WDBS players going for the title.

The Southern Classic runs from 22-24 March 2019 at Jesters Snooker Hall in Swindon and you can follow updates online at our website and via our social media pages.

Geronimo Wins Humber Classic

Peter Geronimo defeated Leroy Williams 3-1 to win the inaugural World Disability Billiards and Snooker (WDBS) Humber Classic yesterday.

Held at the Tradewell Snooker Club in Hull, the event was the first full-weekend tournament staged exclusively for people with learning disabilities. Based upon the nature of their learning disability players were classified as either 6A or 6B, with 6A players receiving a points start when playing 6B players.

Competing in his first WDBS event, London-based Geronimo progressed from Saturday’s group stages to a last eight meeting with fellow debutant Oliver Hanson. Following a 3-0 victory he then added the scalp of Preston’s Jordan Crossey with a 3-1 success to secure his place in the final.

He came up against reigning Northern Classic champion Leroy Williams in the decisive match after the Liverpudlian had made smooth progress through the draw without the loss of a frame.

It was Williams who made the faster start to the final, making a tournament high break of 46 on his way to taking the opening frame. Geronimo however had shown impressive tactical nous throughout the event and took a lengthy second frame to draw level, before adding the third to move one away from the title.

For much of the fourth frame it appeared as though the final was destined for a decider as Williams held the advantage, but it was Geronimo who was the stronger player on the colours and eventually potted the black to clinch a comeback victory. He subsequently described the victory as the ‘best of his life’ and accepted his gold medal from fellow competitor and British television actor Liam Bairstow.

As both the tournament winner and high break prizes were won by players from classification Group 6B, there was also an additional prize for the best performing player from Group 6A which was won by semi-finalist Michael Farrell. The Group 6A high break prize was claimed by local player Michael Greenheld following a run of 19 against Farrell during their quarter-final encounter.

Challenge Cup

The Challenge Cup for competitors who did not progress to the knockout rounds of the main tournament was won by regular player Alexandra Mendham.

It was a weekend to remember for Mendham who was impressive throughout and signed off with a 2-0 victory against first-timer Paul Wilshaw to earn her first gold medal.

Open day success

The weekend began with a busy open day on Friday which welcomed groups from Sheffield, Goole, Blackburn and Hull, as well as other people with disabilities. With opportunities available to participate in fun games, receive snooker coaching from WPBSA World Snooker coaches and to practice ahead of the weekend, it was a fantastic day for everybody involved and we look forward to seeing everybody again at future events.

As with the recent Welsh Open, the event was kindly supported by FizzThinks360, with company founder Jonny ‘Fizz’ Welch in attendance during the weekend.

WDBS would like to thank everyone at the Tradewell Snooker Club for their continued support of disability snooker. Already we are looking forward to returning this November for our third Hull Open competition for our Group 6-8 players.

We would also like to thank not only all of the players, but their families and supporters who travelled to the event and without whom the event would not have been possible.

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.