Away from the TV cameras, the newspapers and the general limelight, the snooker circuit is full of unsung heroes performing important tasks that help tournaments to run properly.

Jimmy Furlong, who has died at the age of 62, was such a man.

His was a name not known to most snooker fans but for 20 years Jimmy was a familiar backstage presence, working as a WPBSA security officer and in other all purpose roles.

He was well liked by players, his fellow officials and was a particularly good friend to the snooker the press. He was cheerful, helpful and kind.

Like his good friend Frank Baker, who is still the WPBSA’s head of security, he would do anything for anyone.

In 2002, he was saddened to be dismissed by the WPBSA because of cost-cutting. What grated was that he had received a letter suggesting he would continue to be employed despite the fact the decision had already been made to get rid of him.

He took the governing body to a tribunal and received a payout but it wasn’t about money, he just missed being part of the snooker scene.

It was the mark of Jimmy that, despite a heart condition, he rescued his 16 year-old neighbour from a fire at her home at Christmas 2002, battling through smoke and putting his own life in danger.

I send my condolences to his family.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

A good man. Many a player - one way or another - was helped by Jimmy.

Always gave us an extra pass when I needed one.... but it took 5 years of dealing with him to get to that stage LOL

Was glad to have known him.

Tony Banbury