3 May 2012
Following our recent board meeting in Sheffield, World Billiards Ltd can now confirm the following:
- We are progressing with plans to have different tiers of events next season. These will vary from ½ ranking point events through to double ranking point events, directly linked to prize money on offer at each. The events you have become accustomed to playing over the past few seasons (eg English Open, Scottish Open etc) will remain in place as full (x1) ranking events, but will become self funding and will therefore be unlikely to reach the level of prize money on offer last season. This will allow us to make substantial funding available for the ‘Major’, double ranking point events. Plans are already underway for the European Open to become the first such event, hopefully followed by comparable events in Asia, Oceania etc.
- An International Sub-Committee is being set up to facilitate the organisation of these events.
- ‘Major’ (double ranking point events) will have the Baulkline Crossing rule in place. All other events will not play this rule.
- Events will be offered out on license to any NGB or Regional Federation who are interested in taking on the organisation of events. This means that anywhere in the world will be able to stage a World Ranking event of the level suited to their budget, subject to certain criteria laid down by WBL.
- A Player Affiliation is being implemented with immediate effect. You do not have to do anything you have not already done, and it will not cost you any more money. Each season you will automatically become affiliated to WBL as soon as you complete playing in your first event. This will simply require you to enter and sign up to the WBL Terms & Conditions of entry as normal, and play in the event. Once you do this you will be given access to an otherwise restricted ‘Players Lounge’ section of the website, and also become eligible for nomination in to the World Championship or its Qualification Tournament.
- Following some extensive modelling and testing, a slight tweak is being applied to the rankings for the forthcoming season. Instead of everyone being given 5 points for entering, all players will earn 1% of their average points scored in the group stages. For example, a player scores 1011 points in 3 matches, so averages 337. That player would therefore earn3.37 points, rather than being gifted 5. This has been brought in for two reasons, firstly to directly link points to performance, and secondly to give a greater degree of accuracy between players in the ranking list.
- The 2012/13 calendar is now being worked on, with the first event of the season planned for September.
- We are still finalising arrangements for the World Championship in October, and a full statement will appear here in due course.