I play Snooker in my local league and have done
so for the past three years or so, prior to this time I had never made a break
I was born with cataracts and later developed
Glaucoma, an eye disorder that means that fluid normally found in the eye does
not drain away and so builds up destructive pressure unless medication is
The combination of these two conditions means
that I am unable to drive a car or read newsprint without the aid of corrective
Some years ago I sent a copy of my prescription
to an optician who claimed that they could make Snooker spectacles for
virtually anyone. I also sent along a cheque as instructed by the advertisement
that I had seen. I was disappointed after a few days to receive a very nice but
disheartening letter stating that it would be impossible to make me some
specialist snooker spectacles as my prescription was too complicated and that
even if they were made, they would not work for me.
I struggled along with my previous specs for
another two years, one day I went into a Spec-Savers Opticians in Huddersfield
and saw on their shelf a pair of Snooker spectacle frames with of course simple
plastic lenses for demonstration. I approached the counter with the demo specs
in my hand and asked if they would try to make a pair for me using these
frames. The Optician said that he doubted whether they would work, but would
give it a try, if I would be OK coping with the disappointment if they were no
good for me.
I was using a pair of glasses at the time that
were thick at the top of the lens but did not swivel to allow me to place my
chin on the cue and still be able to see both the object ball and the pocket.
My highest break with these spectacles was 26 and I was on the points of giving
up all hope of improving.
When my new specialist snooker specs arrived, I
could not wait to try them. I went to the club and set up the balls all over
the table and proceeded to try to knock them in.
At first the new specs seemed alien and unwieldy
and they seemed to dazzle me with the amount of light that they directed onto
my eyes. I went home feeling a little unsure as to whether I had done the right
thing, the next time that I went to practise I noticed a marked improvement and
within a few weeks notched up a 49 break against a friend of mine.
About three months after acquiring my glasses I
started practising using the line up, an exercise that had yielded much
frustration and a high break only in the early forties. Again I persevered
making many fifties and sixties and after a while a top break of
I then broke fifty in a memorable session
against a former local champion player who always seemed to bring out my best
My top break against an opponent is exactly
sixty and was made about a year ago, since getting my specs, my game has
improved out of all recognition. Of course I can still not drive a car or
recognise a friend across the street and yet as snooker is a static ball game,
I do all right.
If you are a mature person and feel that your
vision is not what it was or if you have never had specs but secretly feel that
you might need them for snooker, I would urge you to seek professional advice.
Many people find that they do best with contact lenses and not glasses, but I
can not get on with lenses.
If you have any worries about your vision at
all, I would strongly suggest that you find a good optician as I did and see
what they recommend.
My own game has improved and so my level of
enjoyment and satisfaction has risen as well, if the effort that we put into
something is not transferred into results the feeling of having failed is never
far away. Perhaps if you are struggling, the solution may be awaiting you in a
high street Opticians shop?