Top billiards players are putting their precision shooting to the test.
The Penticton Lakeside Resort and Casino is hosting 525 players, including 375 in team events in the ninth annual Canadian Cue Sport British Columbia 8/9 Ball Championships. There is also singles play and Scotch doubles.
Dan Moran of Twin Lakes has played in all the championships. He loves the room that houses the event.
“Forty pool tables in a beautiful ballroom. Gets your blood pumping,” said Moran.
Shawn Fleming of St. John’s, Nfld. is playing in his fifth championship.
“The calibre is as good as anywhere else,” said Fleming, who won the A advanced teams two years ago.
Penticton’s Nick Kruger, who has won the championship and finished second, said the skill of players gets better every year.
“It’s a well-run tournament,” said Kruger, who defeated Canadian Cue Sports president Ted Harms in a nine-ball match.”The talent is really good this year. Probably the best I have seen it.”
Kruger enjoys that there are lots of people to socialize with, adding that billiards is a good game for that. Organizer Subrina Herbst-Monteith said the start for the championship that ends Sunday was amazing.
“Spectacular players come back year after year to Penticton,” she said, adding that she loves the friendships made.
While she agreed there is lots of camaraderie, there is plenty of competitiveness among players.
“There is a lot of pressure on the locals to keep the top prizes here,” said Herbst-Monteith, adding that the total cash purse is more than $30,000. “They pay good money to be here. They get good money back. It’s fun, it’s entertainment value.”