MARK King has urged WPBSA Chairman, Jason Ferguson to help him recoup his travel costs from the World Six-Reds Championship.
King lost over £1000 in travel costs after organisers informed the world No.15 that he had not been entered into the tournament by mistake.
It was later revealed that King’s exclusion was no accident and that Thai player James Wattana had threatened to withdraw from the event should King take part - after a sour ending to their match at the China Open earlier this year after which Wattana refused to shake his opponent's hand.
Now the event organisers say King is only entitled to compensation for his flight cancellation fee.
“I have contacted Jason Ferguson who is the Chairman of the WPBSA about helping me out and I look forward to hearing a response – it is completely unacceptable that a professional player should be treated in this way,” said King.
“In February the promoter got in touch and informed me of the arrangements for the tournament. Myself and Joe Perry were the first two players to book up and even though a few days later they contacted me as the dates had changed everyone was very good at helping organising some compensation towards paying for the changes the flights.
“It was only a month before the event that I received the call to say that there was a problem. They said that the organisers had made a mistake and as a result I wasn’t entered into the tournament.
“The next day Stephen Maguire pulled out to play in the BTV event but I still didn’t get a place. It was then that I was informed that James Wattana had told the governing body that he wouldn’t appear if I was playing.
“The reason he gave was that he didn’t like my conduct during our match at the China Open.
“I won that match 5-4 and he refused to shake my hand afterwards. During the match I missed a few balls and like any other player had a little word with myself but I certainly didn’t do anything out of the ordinary or attempt to put James off his game – he just threw the toys out of the pram,” added the 110sport player.
King admits experience has been made all the more frustrating after enjoying his first appearance in the six-reds two years ago.
“I went to Thailand to play in the Six-Reds a few years back and really enjoyed it. I got to the quarter-finals where I lost to Jimmy White. When I left I asked the organisers to make sure they let me know when the next event would be taking place - it’s a shame because I was really looking forward to the event and I just hope the current problems can be resolved.
Be interesting to see how this one pans out. It seems James Wattana got the hump about something. Is the 6 reds under World Snooker's remit? If so King has a case.
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