First challenge in 89 years to snooker’s gambling status in Thailand

Photo courtesy of Playo

The status of snooker as a Class B gambling game is set to be challenged for the first time in 89 years, as an agreement has been reached to propose its cancellation to the interior minister.

This initiative has garnered support from the Billiard Sports Association of Thailand, the Interior Ministry, the Sports Authority of Thailand (SAT), and the House Committee on Sports.

This new development followed a recent meeting by the House of Representatives’ Committee on Sports where the Billiard Sports Association of Thailand was present. The discourse was centred around the proposal to expunge snooker from the list of Class B gambling activities as outlined in the Gambling Act 1935.

Sunthorn Charumon, the Chairman of the Billiard Sports Association of Thailand, shed light on the fact that snooker has been categorised as a gambling activity since 1935, despite SAT’s recognition of it as a sport in 1985. This recognition came as snooker made its way into several tournaments, including the SEA Games, the Asian Games, the Asian Snooker Championship, and the World Amateur Snooker Championship.

“The gambling status of snooker has inadvertently placed restrictions on individuals under 20 years old, limiting their opportunities to sharpen their skills in the sport. This is in direct contradiction with SAT’s agenda of fostering more youth athletes.”

During the meeting, the attending parties, namely the Interior Ministry, the SAT, the Billiard Sports Association of Thailand, and the House Committee, arrived at a consensus that snooker should be removed from the Gambling Act. They also concurred on forwarding a proposal for its removal to Interior Minister Anutin Charnvirakul, reported Bangkok Post.

Parinya Roekrai, the Chairman of the House Committee on Sports, has committed to delivering the proposal to Anutin.

In related news, Thai cyber police successfully dismantled two major online gambling networks, confiscating over 18 million baht in cash and revealing a staggering 300 million baht monthly circulation. The crackdown occurred on Thursday, February 15, under the operation of the Technology Crime Suppression Division (TCSD).

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Nattapong Westwood

Nattapong Westwood is a Bangkok-born writer who is half Thai and half Aussie. He studied in an international school in Bangkok and then pursued journalism studies in Melbourne. Nattapong began his career as a freelance writer before joining Thaiger. His passion for news writing fuels his dedication to the craft, as he consistently strives to deliver engaging content to his audience.

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