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Daniel Sánchez leaves Agipi Masters with a vision

Posted by on November 8, 2010

Daniel Sánchez leaves Agipi Masters with a vision

© Harry van Tiel
Daniel Sánchez can play a leading role with his progressive ideas about the future of billiard.

SCHILTIGHEIM - The world champion stood in the catacombs of the Agipi arena again with two feet on the ground. The phone to the ear, a sad look in his eyes, a few times incredulous shaking his head: Daniel Sánchez tried to deal this weekend the painful elimination in the preliminaries of Agipi against the almost ingenious playing Torbjörn Blomdahl.
The Spanish world champion is out of the tournament before it really begins and that hurts a lot. It is unfortunate for the public and the followers on the Internet that the little man, who can discuss so intensely and with great passion the future of his sport, is not at the highest platform of the Agipi Masters. Defeated by Blomdahl, the Viking who completed their show in this preliminary round with Dion Nelin and Michael Nilsson.
Daniel Sánchez left Schiltigheim through out the back door, but he ventilated the days before in dialogues with other players, supporters and people who are involved in billiards his outspoken ideas. The Spaniard reacted strongly to a statement of one of his listeners, who argued that the system must be reformed and matches should last no longer than one hour at most. ,,Who says that’’, blasted Sánchez, ,,he does not like this sport.''
The champion has his own vision, which he ardently defends. ,,People also are looking for hours matches in golf, tennis and snooker. It is not the sport itself that fascinates people and has to be sold to sponsors and the public, but the stars, the top players, the artists in their sport. Formula 1 would not be so popular without Michael Schumacher and Fernando Alonso, the Tour de France without Lance Armstrong and Alberto Contador, tennis without Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal and golf without Tiger Woods. The players are making the sport attractive and give it prestige and fame.’’
The statements rolled over the lips of the player who is the example of modesty himself. Daniel Sánchez celebrated his world title in Sluiskil two weeks ago with a small bunch of billiard friends. ,,I've enjoyed a lot the hugh interest in Spain after my return there’’, he said in Schiltigheim. ,,The focus for my world title in the media was enormous. It says a lot about the popularity of three cushions in my country.’’
Television exposure and internet,  Sánchez said, will have more and more an increasing influence on the billiard sport. The boardmembers of the UMB and the federations now have to react with their policy for the future. The conference Horizons of Billiards, two weeks ago in Madrid, was a first step towards innovations and improvements in that area. It would be good to have such discussions with more parties, especially with many top players and organizers.
Daniel Sanchez, the world champion, can play a leading role with his progressive ideas. For that kind of discussions once was a board of players established, but the role of this organ in the collective vision is marginal. It has grown out too much as a club which only cares about its own interests, not about policy and vision.


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My Comments

It is absolutely true, that changing the sport to more "attractiveness" for the public will damage it. The random consumer will never really appreciate the sport itself but only short time sensation. But the interested player / consumer will like good matches celebrated by the leading edge of the players. It is absolutely amazing to watch 50 points games instead of sets because of the higher series.
In our region we also face a loss of players over time. All activities to make the sport more attractive for the newbies was useless but led to less interest of the other players. Only more high quality is the answer on the long run!
Internet and TV is absolutely necessary. Everything that is not in TV or Internet will not be noticed.
My cheers for the vision of Mr. Sánchez

Message 1/1 - Publish at November 8, 2010 8:23 PM

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