Cueball Derby ‘very proud’ to host new Challenge Tour event

A popular snooker club in Derby is hosting part of one of the newest snooker tournaments dedicated to improving and rewarding the grassroots of the game.

Cueball Derby will host the fifth event of World Snooker’s new Challenge Tour on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week (September 18 and 19).

The Challenge Tour, in its first year, allows snooker amateurs to compete in a series of events panned across the UK and other parts of Europe to secure two places on the main tour next season.

Starting this summer, the tour has had four events so far this season with another five to go before the end of the campaign.

World Snooker announced in March that snooker clubs throughout England would be given the opportunity to bid to host Challenge Tour events and Cueball Derby have been given the opportunity to host one of its biggest events since it reopened in early 2013 after the club briefly closed down as part of Rileys Ltd in 2012.

Keen snooker player and fan Danny Cooper, who also lives in Derby, became the new owner of the venue and has transformed into a snooker hotbed for the community. The club hosts regular tournaments and has previously hosted national academy matches. It has also had special visits from the likes of Jimmy White, Shaun Murphy and Martin Gould for exhibition events.

The Old Green Baize has developed a good and strong relationship with Cueball Derby over the years. Editor Nigel Slater used to work at the club when it was a Rileys establishment – a move which became an inspiration for the creation of the website.

Mr Cooper said being chosen as one of the host venues for the new Challenge Tour was a great accolade.

Cueball Derby. Picture by Nigel Slater

He told The Old Green Baize: “We’re very proud of this news. I think it is a testament to the effort and hard work we have put in here over the last five years and the tour is something we are really pleased to be a part of.

“It reiterates to me that we are doing things right in terms of snooker and, as far as moving forward goes, it is a benchmark for us to continue to maintain and improve the facilities we offer.

“The tour is good for snooker as a whole as it gives the amateurs game a chance to come through. It shows people there is an avenue forward to get on the main tour.”

For more information visit the club’s website here.

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