Interview with Michaela Tabb

Michaela Tabb

We are proud to present a chat with Michaela Tabb, courtesy of our friends at Snookered Magazine...

We had two events out there this month so that was quite tricky as we usually only have one. We had the singles event to start with which is always a lovely and then we had the World Cup of Pool, which is a doubles event and harder to work and we didn't have a break between the two events so it was tough but it was very rewarding as the crowds in the Philippines are always enthusiastic.

The events were held in Manila which is the capital city and around 16 million people live there, the traffic is mental most of the day. You are constantly in a battle with taxis and getting places, it's probably similar to living in London but because I am from a small town in Scotland it can get quite frustrating spending an hour a day minimum in taxis. It was made worse by the fact it was their rainy season as obviously when there are thunderstorms and the like everyone is travelling in their cars.

The crowds there are the best in the world. They are so enthusiastic about pool and their own teams when they are playing. But they are so loud and excitable and it seriously is one of the best places in the world to have a pool event, no doubt about that. 

I don't think a Snooker event would work out there as I'm not sure if there is any interest there. You have to bear in mind that 9-ball pool is like their second most popular sport in the whole country and that's why regardless there is always a huge crowd at these events.

Brazil was a very tiring trip for me. When I arrived home from the Philippines which was a 17 hour journey, I ended up with only 4 hours back in my house from 12.30am to 4.30am.  So I had only 2 hours sleep and then I had to catch the flight to Brazil. When I got there I was very tired the day off I should have had was spent sleeping. I think I slept for 15 hours!

The resort where the event was held was lovely. If we were there in the summer it would have been absolutely amazing but we were there during their late winter/early spring season so when the sun wasn't out it was quite cool. I didn't expect that as when you think of Brazil you think of beaches and getting a sun tan so that was quite a shock to the system!

They did a really good job for the arena where the matches were played and they had spent a lot of money on the marquee which had air conditioning or heating when required which was perfect with the rapid changing of temperatures outside. Playing conditions were tough because of that, the team did the best job with the tables as we could and it was the same with the two players on it. But for the first time for us being out there as a country that is not used to putting on that kind of event they did really well and the players thoroughly enjoyed their time there and you can't ask for much more than that.

The crowds when they were there were actually very responsive. With the setup it was a shame as because all the VIP seats were around the table but because they hadn't sold those tickets on the first couple of days it looked as if there was no one there even though the blocks at the back were full. It is fine having VIP seats but if you can't sell them you should encourage people at the back to fill them up so it looks better on television.

When we had the local wildcards playing the crowds really got behind then and one example was when Graeme Dott missed a shot playing Brazilian Igor Figueiredo the crowd actually shouted in cheers. Afterwards Graeme said to me "Did you hear that cheer when I missed? It was like the whole place had woken up!"

I was lucky enough to be chosen to referee the final and the atmosphere was great. In the earlier matches the referee's didn't get introduced as there wasn't that many people there so they didn't think there was much point in it. But for the final when I walked out they all started clapping and cheering and I was so appreciative of that because they appreciate what you are doing.

I also got the chance to meet Brazil's legendary player; Rui Chapeau. They played a montage of him playing Steve Davis and Stephen Hendry many years ago and to get a chance to meet him was amazing. 

Things will be quiet for me in the next few months as there aren't many events going on so I have decided to try and focus on myself for and get fit and get back in to shape. It's hard trying to watch your weight when you away and eating hotel food and other stuff so I am back at the gym again and my goal is to lose a stone before Christmas!

My 10th year anniversary with being with World Snooker is the first week of October so I am quite looking forward to that as well.

I also have an App coming out soon which will be out in the next month or so. Its primary use is as a scoring app. I spent some time in a studio doing all the voice recording of all the scores and the different announcements I make so I can be your personal scorer at your table wherever you are. It will also be able to keep all your match stats, so if you are playing in a league or with a friend so 4 weeks down the road you can look back to see who won, who made the highest break and other useful stats.