For some, playing snooker is a passion. For others, it’s a profession.
And who says there are no inspirational characters in the game today? Here’s one who plays on the World Disability Snooker tour…
For David Delboy Church, 22, from Norwich, playing snooker he said was an escape. An escape from the pain and suffering caused by a Road Traffic Accident he had in 2013 where he broke his right leg.
He told SnookerZone: “I used snooker as an escape from life and depression and basically to get away from the troubles I was in, this was when the passion for snooker really started.”
But despite all the troubles he’s had, even a condition called Moebius syndrome, a facial paralysis which affects the 6th and 7th cranial nerves which are eye movement and facial expressions, he still managed to claim the 2017 World Disability Open Snooker Championship in his group which he will be defending soon in September.
You might be wondering why he’s called Delboy. Well, here’s why, he explains:
“It’s just a joke around people at my club and friends cause I went through a stage of being like Del Boy I think people see me as a character to be honest.”
He loves Only Fools and Horses, one of the greatest comedies in the history of TV, with Delboy as the central character. He’s a right one that Delboy…
Watch a video on the WDBS, below. Click play…
A SOLID TEAM BACKING “DELBOY”
But joking aside, Church takes his snooker seriously, and has racked up so far his highest break of 89 – he’s nearing making that century.
He’s coached by the Blade Cue coaching team, led by the head coach Gary Filtness and Church said the Blade Cue and coaching has been so helpful and easy to understand and apply to his game. He’s got a solid team around him and is sponsored by the Blade Cue and Martin Daly of Tyrone Cues, he said. The chairman of the World Seniors tour and the founder of Snooker Legends is also involved – Jason Francis. He also has a Sports Behavioural Therapist Matt Andrews helping him.
He added: “It’s made me so confident in my game. The Blade Cue Training Mat, the Blade Cue Pocket Trainer and the Blade Cue are all very good training aids in my opinion.”
Church last year entered the Paul Hunter Classic amateur rounds and told SnookerZone he’d like to enter Gibraltar next year, but said, “we’ll see.”
Naturally, anyone who picks up a snooker cue wants to play the greatest of them all. Church is no exception and said he’d love to give Ronnie O’Sullivan a game on the pro tour. But, he also said he’d love to play four-times World Champion John Higgins.
He added: “I just think he is solid in every department of his game.
Church played in The Paul Hunter Classic last year amateur rounds and he said it was amazing for him, an amazing experience and great to play in the conditions and be away for a snooker week.
A LEARNING CURVE
On the WDBS, which has catered for all types of people with disabilities, he said he loves playing in it.
“Just being around everyone and playing in a professional way feeling like you’re a pro in some ways you are just a disabled pro I guess. I’d like to see more players and more tournaments, to be honest, but we are making the right steps towards it. He added: “I find it’s amazing, it’s so good to play other players with disabilities and to be around them and play in such great conditions. It makes you feel you have a career in some ways. It also is a learning curve watching how people adapt to play the sport they love is truly inspirational!”
What was even more remarkable when he won the 2017 WDBS Open title he told SnookerZone, it was 4 days after burying his father – another setback that did not deter Church from finding success out of pain!
To anyone who is thinking of trying snooker – regardless of whether they have a disability or not, he urged:
“Play! Give it a go. It’s a hard sport but you get the satisfaction from playing and meeting people in a competitive atmosphere.” SnookerZone seconds that!
We’d like to thank David for his time and wish him well in his career on his snooker inside and outside the WDBS!
Discover all about the WDBS by clicking on the image link below…
Chris Gaynor is a writer with 10 years’ experience writing for the web.
He loves snooker, CSI and loves cycling off tiramisu!