Dax pockets world spot
Thursday, 24th January, 2013
By Andrew Robertson
Countless hours spent playing on Broken Hill pool tables have paid off for Dax Wasley, who will represent Australia at the World Eightball Pool Championships in England later this year.
Wasley is part of a 10-man team competing against 17 other countries in the Open teams category of the championships which will be held in the northwest city of Blackpool from June 23.
And the 29-year-old, a former SA Under 21 champion who moved to Kalgoorlie in 2008, gives the Aussie team an outside chance of winning the title for the first time in 17 years.
But they will have to overcome the might of the British teams which Wasley said were filled with talented players who hadn't been able to make it on the snooker circuit.
"We definitely have a side that can mix it up," said Wasley, whose selection comes aftera solid performance in the recent Australian Eightball Championships.
Playing for WA, he won 10 of 12 games at the October titles, including 10 straight games and three of four games in the grand final, which Victoria
Wasley said it was his performance in the finals that cemented his selection in the Australian team, which includes two reserves and eight starters, among them Wasley.
"They took that into account as well so I got the call up," he said.
Since he was told of his selection on Tuesday, the former local has been swamped by messages of support from well wishers in his home town.
"I've had heaps of support off all my mates. It's been fantastic to talk to everyone again.
"I still consider myself a local; I'm just not there at the moment."
No one is prouder than his parents. Dad Lawrence said his son had won "just about everything" he could win in Broken Hill and was the current Kalgoorlie open champion.
"It's a good effort, really," he said. "He's over the moon."
Wasley junior said his father was the reason he took up the game as an 11-year-old: "Anything to hang around dad and his mates."
He made special mention of former BH champion Rodney Harvey, who was tasked with teaching the young Dax the finer points of the game.
"All the boys helped me out but he's the one that gave me the passion for it."
When he isn't working as a scaffolder, Wasley spends a minimum of 10 hours a week playing and practicing on the pool table and some weeks closer to 30 hours.
He now intends to ramp things up ahead of the championships.
As a sort of warm up, the team will spend nine days in South Africa playing a number of test matches before travelling on to England.
"I've got to start living on the table - you can't afford to go over there half involved."