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Carom Billiard - 3-Cushion - Bert's column (NED)

Our (soon to be official) world records

Posted by on June 18, 2017

Our (soon to be official) world records

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Go to the website of  the IAAF (athletics), and you'll find an impressive number of pages devoted to just one thing: world records. Not that it's surprising: with a multitude of disciplines and varying distances, with athletes getting just that little bit better year in, year out, records are the heartbeat of their sport.  

And ours, actually. But 3-cushion had a bit of catching up to do, when it comes to RECOGNIZING records, and giving them the status they deserve.  For many years, our records had been a grey area, everything was unofficial. What we needed, was a place where "you could look it up". Our governing body, the UMB, also felt the need to move forward, and asked me to make inventory. I was honored to do so.

The UMB website, currently under reconstruction, will soon have some new pages for you to browse. Those who are interested in the history of the game may enjoy the overview of bronze, silver and gold medal winners at World Championships and World Cups. But for me, the most gratifying part of the job was creating the categories worthy of the term "world record", and finding the very best ever performances in those categories.  

To give you an idea of the criteria that were used in the selection of these top results, here are two examples.  1) A few years ago, Hugo Patino played a friendly match in New York and ran 18 and out. His friends told him to keep playing, and he made another 13 points, for a run of 31! Hugo is a great player and I have no doubt the story is true.  But there is no way you could recognize this as a world record.  2) Dick Jaspers had an unlucky first round loss in the Ho Chi Minh World Cup in 2015. He lost in a shootout, following the 40-40 in 13 innings against Shin Dae Kwon. But we can't credit him with a world record 3.076 tournament average, can we?  So many fine, some even spectacular achievements, did not make the cut. We need an official organizer, a referee, a signed score sheet, a minimum number of matches. And in this day and age, video evidence will certainly help when (for example) a run of 29 is presented to the UMB in hopes of recognition. 

Take a look, if you will, at the categories first. It's quite a list.

 

world records 1

 

I hope it's obvious from the illustration, but just to make sure:

- records 1, 2 and 3 can only be broken during a UMB World Championship.

- records 4,5 and 6 can only be broken in a World Cup tournament.

- records 7,8 and 9 can be broken in any official Scotch Double event. 

There is a good chance records 11 and 18 will have a long life ahead of them. Very few tournaments are played with matches to 60 points, and 15 point sets are also more rare than they used to be. 

On the bright side: so many top players compete to 40 points these days, I am sure records 2,5,6,12 and 16 are under pressure. 

 

world records 2

 

So who is the world record holder world record holder? In other words, who has the most? It's Mr. Extra-terrestrial, Frédéric Caudron, whose name is on the list an amazing 10 times! He's well ahead of the nr. 2, Dick Jaspers, with 5 records. 

Record nr. 13 comes with one of my all-time favorite billiard anecdotes. Eddy Merckx plays his historical, Beamonesque  4-9-26-7-0-4 match in the Bundesliga in 2011, and after the last point (a tricky, very missable long-long-long) he sticks his cue in the air and lets out a shriek. He knows he has just performed the Apollo moon landing of billiards. An elderly German gentleman comes over to congratulate him, and says: "You are so happy young man. Fifty in six, is that your personal best?" 

 

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My Comments

Suheil
Suheil
Thank you for your effort
Is it possible to find a video for the Apollo moon landing, record nr 13?

Message 1/2 - Publish at June 19, 2017 11:12 AM

Bert van Manen
Bert van Manen
Sadly, no
Sorry Suheil, there is no video of this match.

Publish at June 19, 2017 6:15 PM

Juanuribe
Juanuribe
Excellent
As always, great article Bert

Message 2/2 - Publish at June 24, 2017 12:16 AM

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