By Duncan Collins
The Rhodes Pool Club has started the year by hosting a 24-hour pool challenge. In the name of charity, students Ryan Brits and Dean “6-footer” Rawlins played pool continuously from 10am on Friday, February 16 to the same time the next day. The proceeds of the event will go to Hospice in Grahamstown.
The event generated major interest from local businesses that helped sponsor the challenge by supplying the many prizes that could have been won on the day. Money was raised by selling boerewors rolls and raffle tickets. Prizes sponsored by the likes of Preston’s, Roxbury Ciné, Postnet and Mad Hatters were all up for grabs.
For 24 hours, anybody was allowed to come to the Purple Horse and play either Brits or Rawlins. For Brits, this was the second year that he was participating in the challenge. When asked what was the worst part of the 24 hours, Brits simply replied “my back and legs”.
For Rawlins it was the first time participating in the 24-hour challenge. When asked what his concerns for the night were, he said “being six foot seven [1,975m] in height, my back!” The toughest time for the two men came between 3am and 8am in the morning. Brits said that it was at this time that “it is pretty hard to keep your concentration”
Chantelle Gladwin, chairperson of the Rhodes Pool Club, talked of how important it was that societies, public and businesses did their part to help the community and how the event is important to bring about awareness for the club and make money for charity. Her biggest challenge was getting people motivated, she says. Talking about the challenge on a whole she said “it’s a lot more than just sport, it’s about awareness and the community”
Brits completed the 24 hours by winning his 121st game. He lost only 44 games and ended with a winning average of 73%. After the challenge was completed, Brits said that it was “hectic but great fun”, and that he was “keen on going home to sleep”. Rawlins ended the challenge with a higher average of 75%, playing 175 games, winning 131 of these and also only losing 44.
Last year the pool club won the award for most improved club and they are ambitious for the forthcoming year. This year they are carrying on with their very strong internal league, competitions and coaching clinics. A new addition to the pool club will be clinics to coach pool referees.