News Carom Billiard


Carom Billiard - 3-Cushion - Kozoom News (FRA)

Switala (La Baule) turns his anger to French federation

Posted by on November 13, 2019

Switala (La Baule) turns his anger to French federation

© Kozoom Studio
La Baule chairman Joël Switala: withdrew his team from competition and cancelled WC organization

LA BAULE - The French billiards president Jean-Paul Sinanian has responded with regret to the open letter sent by Joël Switala, president of the billiard club BC Baulois. In his letter, Switala withdrew his team, the French and European champion, with immediate effect from the French team competition. He cancelled the participation of the defending champion La Baule at the Coupe d'Europe for teams in 2020 and the organization of the World Championship three-cushion individually in La Baule in 2021. The reason for Switala is that the players suspended by the UMB for participation at the Korean PBA tournaments, such as Frédéric Caudron and other PBA players, are not allowed by the federation to play in the the French team competition.

The UMB, world federation, has imposed a one-year suspension on players who participated in the PBA tournaments. Switala points to other countries, such as the Netherlands and Belgium , where players, also foreign PBA players, are allowed to participate in the team competitions and have not been banned from the CEB, the European federation. The suspension does apply to all international tournaments, like World Cups, World championships, European championships and among others Grand Prix tournaments in three cushion.

Until last season, the La Baule team played with Frédéric Caudron, Jérémy Bury and Jean Paul de Bruijn. This year Eddy Merckx would replace Caudron. This week, however, Switala withdrew his team from the competition. He mentioned that in his open letter to the French billiard federation, clubs and other relations in the billiard world.

French billiards president Jean-Paul Sinanian starts his answer with: ''My first thoughts go to the players who have joined Switala and his club in the hope to play high-level matches all the year, both in the French D1 competition and in the Coupe d'Europe. They are now confronted with a fait accompli and, if things are confirmed, frustrated for the entire season. Not to mention the attack on the the credibility of the team championship in our country.''

''Regarding the suspensions, imposed on PBA players, I want to clarify that the French fedeeration has not suspended anyone. The federation has simply applied, at the request of the UMB, the world federation, the sanctions imposed by the UMB, because the players have broken the rules which everyone knows. We have taken over the suspension, other countries in team competitions did not follow the UMB. In France, these suspensions are seen as official sanctions. It is not possible to apply double standards. If there is a suspension, that applies to all individuals, a team and every type of game. After consulting the French independent commission, the 'Comité indépendant d'ethique sportive et de déontologie, we have chosen to show our solidarity with international organizations and apply the sanction. Like we are sure that the CEB and the UMB will apply a sanction that we have imposed at national level.''

''I want to note that none of the players involved, have made the switch and had to ask for the federation's permission to participate in the PBA competitions. Regarding the accusations against the French federation, I do not intend to make matters worse by penetrating into the controversy and thereby preventing a possible return.  Make no mistake, those who voluntarily work with a passion for billiards, are making mistakes. I'm no exception. I suggested to Joël Switala to talk to us and try to find a common basis. I regret that the publication of his letter was not preceded by a constructive discussion between us. He is currently traveling and his return is not expected until the beginning of December. I can only speak to him as quickly as possible. No one has ever said that his activities for billiards, his organizations, which we always supported, his sponsorship, his desire to improve the conditions for players and the results of national players, have not been useful and desirable. We need passionate people like him and others to help us move the billiards sport forward.''

''I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the volunteers who work within the French billiards federation for their determination to play billiards, for everyone at every level. Let's try to stay calm and show common sense.''

The organizer Joël Switala, chairman of the BC Baulois, who has also been active in organizing World Cups in La Baule in recent years, names his decision 'heartbreaking', as he explains in his open letter. He blames the French federation for its attitude towards organizers and teams.

Missing the recognition and consultation by the French federation on various occasions, I have made the following important decisions, Switala states:

A) The La Baule team will be withdrawn for all qualifying matches in the 2019/2020 season, starting with the December 6 match against Colmar.

B) The La Baule team, defending the title in the French team competition, will not organize the France D1 2020 championship.

C) The La Baule club will no longer allow the D1 team to compete in the coming competitions.

D) The defending champion La Baule will not participate at the European championship, the Coupe d'Europe in Porto, 2020

E) The Baulois billiard club withdraws the organization of the three cushion World championship individually in 2021.

Switala: ''Showing my respect to the players, I now wanted to announce these decisions so that you have time to look for other teams.'' In addition, Switala promises to pay all his players for the seven matches in the competition, which they are not playing after the withdrawal.''

Switala: ''I cannot continue to appreciate a federation that pays no attention and no recognition for all the work done in the recent past. I feel very angry, most of all for Frédéric Caudron's suspension, because he is my friend. I was proud that he signed for La Baule. And he should have been allowed to continue and play for us in France, like it is permitted in the Netherlands and Belgium.''

Switala concludes: ''I'm tired of all this, too much is too much. I wish all the players involved good luck for the rest of their career, which I will follow with interest.''

French billiards president Jean-Paul Sinanian reacted to Switala's open letter



Back to All News

My Comments

Response from FBB President
I have read this news over and over.
I see the points made by Mr.Switala very clearly.
But I do not understand the reply from FBB President Mr.Sinanian at all.
What is he talking about? What is exact position of FBB towards this outbreak?

I do respect authentic decision of Netherlands and Belgium Federation who seem to care their players and future of carom billiard.

It was frustrating to watch such important decision by CEB Disciplinary Commission has been made by the persons from national federations who have not organized Worldcup and World Championship for a long time.
How do they know what to do for the players and global carom fans?

Message 1/2 - Publish at November 14, 2019 4:04 PM

Article and posts on Kozoom France site

And, below is my own posting today, hoping both UMB and PBA will be successful by all means.

About BB's response to Joel,
I am a third party for this issue between FBB-Mr.Switala but after reading BB’s response to Joel, I can not but have to express a few points of mine.

1. The issue is between FBB and Mr.Switala and/or FBB and CEB/UMB. Why blame innocent PBA?

2. Carom industry in Korea (a small country far away from Western-Europe but) seems feeding global
carom these days.
UMB(& Kozoom) and CEB are benefitting much more than they have brought to carom sport.
What UMB,CEB and FBB have achieved for carom before and after BWA? Only declines in overall.

3. Nothing wrong PBA and Billiards-TV in Korea are trying to produce video contents for the viewers
and other TVs interested.

What about Kozoom and UMB? What do they want? Only TV channels in Korea are interested in
broadcasting carom videos on TV. In France ? Any other European countries on commercial scale?
Tell me,please.

4. If there will be 40 PBA events per year (mostly in Korea and others most possibly in Europe),
it will be a blessing for carom sport and players. Can UMB, CEB and Kozoom do that?
If so, please, show us.

Professional players and players who want playing carom as a profession will be travelling to
wherever/whenever there are carom events with good prize money.
Is’nt it what professional golfers and tennis players are doing? Why not by carom players?

5. Any top-20,50 or 300 players can make their own decision which event they they will participate.
They will be flying 11 or 20 hours if there are lucrative carom competitions.

If UMB, CEB and FBB will restrict their freedom, will they be responsible for their career? They are
sports organizations but not players’ agency.

6. According to news I got from Korean billiard medias and people, the financial payment from
Kozoom to UMB were majorly brought from Korean billiard market (including MBC Sprots TV).

And most of past Kozoom 3CC Masters were in Korea. Why not in France or other European
countries to where the European players can go by car?

7. There are not many UMB international events on UMB calendar according to my search.
Why only 6 PBA-LPBA events are agreeable by UMB? Non sense.
If other continental and national small events are scheduled avoiding major UMB and PBA events,
there will be no problem. It will bring big chances to the players.

I hope I can enjoy watching UMB/Kozoom events this week and PBA events next week. Sometimes both at the same week. Consequently, carom sport and players will be in far better future.
With my best regards to every in the carom world,

Nov.18, 2019 15:57

Message 2/2 - Publish at November 18, 2019 4:15 PM

Post new comment

Log in or register now to leave a comment

Forgot your password?

Don’t have an account yet?

Sign up now for free to post comments, add your photos, partipate in our forums and receive exclusive Newsletter.

Then you can get a Premium Pass for a full Live and Video access.

Join Kozoom