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$30,000 finds the best pool players in the North Island

$30,000 finds the best pool players in the North Island

Teams from all over the country are gearing up to compete against the best 8-Ball pool players in New Zealand and the chance to win a share of $30,000 in prize money.

They will take part in the New Zealand VNEA 8-Ball Team Championship final this month in Hamilton which is the culmination of two 12 week-long seasons.

Throughout the year, approximately 40 teams have competed regionally at one of Massé’s clubs in Hamilton, Pukekohe, and Auckland. The top twenty teams across all regions have been invited to play in the two-day final.

Wrecking Balls team member and Massé head coach, Jimmy Henry, says the tournament is New Zealand’s biggest pool competition and has incredibly high stakes.

“We’ve got a strong team but there are other really dangerous players competing too. The way the competition runs, anyone can win on the day,” says Henry.

Henry will play alongside Glen Eden Massé members Glen Coutts, Johnathan McDowell-Pakiteo, and Chris Bowman. All four players have won New Zealand pool titles and competed internationally.

Teams compete for the top spot and a share of $30,000 in prize money.

The highest ranked players at the end of the tournament are also eligible for selection to the 2019 New Zealand pool team who will compete at the VNEA World Pool Championships in Las Vegas in May.

Massé sends around 30 senior and junior players each year to the VNEA championships, which bring together around 4,000 players from around the globe each year.

Massé funds players’ airfares, accommodation and competition fees, and provides equipment and free coaching to get the team ready for the championship.

The Valley National 8-ball League Association (VNEA) is the largest global amateur pool organisation with more than 100,000 registered players. The VNEA league uses its own rules and tables different to other cue-sports disciplines.

Henry travels around the Massé clubs coaching junior players and is looking forward to competing against his students who have made it to the final.

“It’s great to watch the new players and juniors come through with a lot of talent,” he says.

The upcoming finals will be held at Masse’s Hamilton branch on 27-28 October.

The final will be live streamed on Massé’s Facebook page at


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