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Big break for local blackball players

Wednesday, 6th November, 2019

(From left) Aaron Williams, Jake Carauna, Rhys Williams and other locals will be helping represent Australia at a world blackball competition this weekend in Cyprus. PICTURE: Myles Burt (From left) Aaron Williams, Jake Carauna, Rhys Williams and other locals will be helping represent Australia at a world blackball competition this weekend in Cyprus. PICTURE: Myles Burt

By Callum Marshall

Six locals will be travelling to Cyprus tonight to take part in an international blackball competition that begins this weekend.

The Nations Cup, which is run by the European Blackball Federation, will kick off on Sunday and locals Aaron Williams, Rhys Williams, Glenn Williams, Jack Carauna, Shaun Durbidge and Krystal Morton will be playing for various national sides.

“We’ve got some players that are representing one of the Australian open teams,” said Glenn.

“That’s Aaron Williams, Rhys Williams, they’re my sons, and Shaun Durbridge and Jake Carauna.

“We’ve got Krystal Morton who’s in the ladies team and myself in the masters team, the over 50s side.”

Glenn said a strong local contingent had demonstrated their skills during the national championships this year.

“In February they had the national championships held in Melbourne and the  players that have been selected are all part of the New South Wales team,” he said.

“The selection for the Australian team is based on the performance of players at that event and initially there were five players from Broken Hill that were selected - myself, Aaron and Rhys, Adrian Winter in the open and Krista Warden in the ladies. 

“Winter couldn’t go and there were several other players that were unavailable maybe due to costs, so consequently Sean Durbridge and Jake Caruana were added to the squad based on their performance.

“They were the next ones in line so they’ve achieved the honour of representing Australia too.

“It’s an achievement for all of us to be able to represent the state, but to be picked in the Australian side it’s even more so.

“It’s added for me because I get to go away and represent Australia with both my sons. I’m not sure how many times that’s happened.”

Glenn, who last year represented the state in 8 ball, said he enjoyed playing blackball more because it was a much more attacking game.

“There’s some different rules in blackball compared to 8 ball and the main thing that is different is that in 8 ball you can deliberately foul and give your opponent two shots.

“In blackball if you deliberately foul that’s immediate loss of game.

“Consequently, if you’re snookered you must attempt to get out of the snooker. 

“If you don’t, you just deliberately foul and shoot away or touch the ball, you’ve lost the game. 

“It’s more of an attacking game. It’s an exciting game. I think it’s a better game to watch. I love playing both but I prefer blackball.”

Local businesses and the public helped out the players as well, said Glenn, with their support and financial assistance going a long way to getting them to Cyprus.

“It costs each player about four to five thousand dollars for accommodation, air fares...,” he said.

“We have to pay everything. Nothing’s paid for by the Australian Blackball Federation.

“We’ve been lucky enough to have the support of the community and a number of businesses in town.”

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