The Board of the Republic of Ireland Ladies Snooker Association is currently working behind the scenes to enable a full return to our events once restrictions are eased.
Here is an update on a number of items that we wish to remind our members of and future members to our Association.
Free membership of RILSA is available to all females within the Republic of Ireland once you have resided in the Country for over 1 year. While Membership is free, its not guaranteed, as each application is checked fully before been processed.
We advise that you read through our competition rules prior to applying for membership. This is available at the top of our website main page by clicking on Rules and scrolling down to competition rules.
The application for membership is available on our website www.rilsa.ie again just fill in the details and submit your application, its as easy as that.
Many new initiatives have been introduced since 2010 to encourage participation by females into both snooker and billiards. Many young girls play cue sports within our member schools etc with some making it out of the school system to participate in competition on a National basis which is very encouraging indeed.
The Griffith Pin award is presented to any female who participates in 30 events either in snooker or billiards or both combined. This pin award entitles the wearer of the pin to free entry to the Griffith Pot Black Competition where the winner receives free entry to all RILSA Snooker events for 1 year.
The International Cap Award has been introduced to honour all of those women who have represented their Country over the years since 1976. We have a certificate and pin to acknowledge their representation. A Bronze pin with cert for 10 International Caps, A Silver pin and cert for 15 International Caps and a Gold pin and cert for 20+ International Caps.
The National Ranking Card Certificate is awarded each season for players on the main tour who finish in the top 8 and on the Intermediate tour the top 4. On our Billiards tour the top 2 in both Amateur and Intermediate receive a National Ranking Card.
The free scholarship for 4 young girls was introduced 3 years ago where free table time along with free coaching in both snooker and billiards is provided for the duration of the scholarship. This is a fantastic opportunity for females to improve their skills and advance the standard of play.
Jennifer Earle is the first recipient in cue sports in Ireland to achieve the Bronze Gaisce Presidents Award for her attendance and participation in the RILSA Scholarship. Our scholarship girls also receive half price entry to all RILSA events.
Our entry fees have remained the same since 2014, €10 for seniors and €5 for those under 21. We did increase the fees to €12 and €6 respectively but returned to the previous fees once funds had increased. Many members who enter our events are of Intermediate level and therefore if knocked out at the quarter final stages have entry to the Intermediate event which is also played on the same day. For those players who are of Amateur standard can avail of practice time it they are knocked out of the event. So fantastic value for money indeed.
RILSA is currently promoting a weekly lotto, where members can join for €10 per month where they avail of special rates at our new Academy in Newbridge. Those in the lotto get an Association Polo Shirt with Logo during each season. This is not compulsory and anyone who joins can drop out at anytime they so wish.
Rates for our members at our Academy are set between RILSA and the management of the club. A €7 per hour rate is available to all our members and for those supporting our weekly lotto, we have a special rate of €5 per hour which is much appreciated by the members. Table rates for our many events are pre agreed by the Board of RILSA and the club involved.
Our Annual General Meeting is a great opportunity for our members to become more involved with the organisation, where they can put forward their ideas in the form of motions or proposals. The AGM and the members in attendance decide on a plan for the upcoming season. Decisions regarding prize money and prizes such as medals are made at our AGM. Members are reminded that once decisions are made and the Board of RILSA are tasked in the running of the Association, that these cannot be changed unless an Emergency General Meeting is arranged in accordance with our Constitution.
The Board of RILSA are volunteers and RILSA itself is a non profit organisation. The Board of RILSA do not receive any form of payment for their services to the Association such as travel expenses to meetings etc. Our volunteer referees do not receive payment for their work at RILSA events during the season. The Tournament Director of all our events in both snooker and billiards does not receive payment, its completely volunteered. On behalf of the membership we thank them so much for everything they do to keep this organisation afloat.
Since 2015, with the introduction of our Annual International Irish Open, RILSA, over 5 years provided fantastic competition and attained €8,500 in prize money. At National level we provided prize money for the National Championship and Maureen Butler Cup since 2017 which totals to €1,200, unfortunately 2020 was a complete wash out due to restrictions and lack of fundraising for our Association. We see 2021 as another year without fundraising but we will return in 2022 and continue our plans to increase funding.
We are delighted with our National Academy at Sharkx Newbridge and extend out appreciation to the National Lottery and the Sports Capital Programme who provided the much needed funding to improve the standard of playing conditions and equipment that females will now have full access to in the years ahead to aid improvement in their overall standard and increase participation.
When we introduced a number of playing levels in 2015 to cater for all females regardless of their skill and ability, it was met with full approval by everyone involved. Participation is the name of the game and with full acceptance and catering for all, we will see females improve and develop to higher levels in the sport. Our organisation supports all our players regardless of their ability as we are fully aware that many females just want to enjoy the sport and if they wish to remain at beginner level so be it and if the wish to improve to a higher standard we are there to help and support them all no matter what.
If anyone of our members have any questions, please contact us on email at rilsasnooker.com