FAIRFAX, VA — 12,000 professional, public safety athletes from 70 countries competing in 60+ sports to qualify for over 1,600 medal events. That’s the Olympic-style competition known as the World Police and Fire Games (WPFG).
Held every two years, the games are being staged in the United States for the first time in nearly three decades. The host is Fairfax County, Virginia. The four previous competitions were held in Belfast (Ireland), Barcelona (Spain), Stockholm (Sweden), and Melbourne (Australia).
The pocket billiards event is a 5-day competition covering 9Ball, 8Ball, and straight pool disciplines. Matches run from Monday, June 29th through Friday, July 3rd. The venue is Breakers Sky Lounge, an upscale room managed by Shanna Lewis in Herndon, VA. The tournament will adhere to BCA rules and be played on Brunswick Gold Crown tables with Super Aramith balls. “The players are in for a great week of billiards,” predicted Lewis.
The WPFG Sport Coordinator for Pocket Billiards is Eric S. Townsend, a 10-year veteran and captain in the American Poolplayers Association, league operator and captain with Cue Sports International since 2009, ambassador and series lead for Joe Tucker’s American Rotation, and author of the billiard book Sharking: Don’t Get Fooled Again(GoBooklets.com, Amazon). “It’s an honor to ensure that our police and fire professionals get to experience the very best that pro am billiards has to offer,” shared Townsend. “It’s the very least that we can do,” he added.
Townsend was hired by WPFG Sports Director Tony Shobe and his Senior Games Manager Mark Kidd. “We couldn’t be happier with the enthusiasm shown by and for billiards for the better part of a year leading up to this event,” shared Shobe. “Our competitors will be grateful for the extra effort being put forth,” echoed Kidd.
The billiard support team is lead by Dan Madden, director of the Pennsylvania 9Ball Tour and a top amateur player himself. He is tasked with administering the tournament and maintaining a live audio and video stream available by mobile phone, tablet, or computer. “I’m excited for the field to play our unique quadruple-qualifying format, and for friends and family back home to be able to enjoy the live stream,” Madden said.
Additional attractions include professional commentator George Hammerbacher, who will call the action each afternoon from 1-6pm. “How can I not be excited for such an event?” offered Hammerbacher — a sentiment that’s been shared by many involved with the Fairfax 2015 games. Lucasi-sponsored professional billiard player Shaun Wilkie will be on hand Tuesday and Wednesday for player challenges, photo opps, and two different talks on 9Ball and straight pool tips. “‘I was excited to receive the invite for this wonderful event,” Wilkie said. “It’s not every day that I get to tip my cap through the game that I love,” he added.
If you’d like to catch the live pocket billiard action this coming week (June 29th through July 3rd), then tune in any time from 9am until 6pm on the away channel atwww.tvmike.tv. Commentary added 1-6pm daily. If you have any questions, then please email the WPFG Sport Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.