The current pandemic affects all of society, and especially sport. Less under the media limelight, the French Billiard Federation is impacted in the same way as all activities practiced indoors. Affiliated with the Ministry of Sports, it undergoes the “stop and go” of government measures, each time trying to adapt to it as best they can: “It’s a difficult situation, which our licensees have great difficulty in understanding. They all ask for explanations on the closure of their club while they have the feeling that all the health protection measures have been developed in our rooms ”, explains Jean-Paul Sinanian, the president of the French Billiard Federation.
Operation “Covid-19 resilience” is extended
Everything seems to have been put in place to try to save this activity which concerns no less than 16,000 licensees in France: “When we were able to resume, and in connection with our supervisory ministry, we imposed that each practitioner have his bottle of hydroalcoholic gel. All tables were cleaned after each game. Everyone wore masks. In addition, during a game, the person who is not playing does not stay around the table but will sit down. What else to do at the dista level nciation? “ continues the president, who has been re-elected for the third time in a row.
What to do, in fact? Because that was not enough and the balance sheet is increasing for the 600 affiliated clubs. If 400 of these clubs are hosted by municipalities and have little cost and therefore little charge – “For them, the situation is not yet dramatic, but it should not last” -, what to say for the remainder, that is to say those which formed in association or which belong to companies?
Faced with this, the president did not go four ways: “Our clubs need the solidarity of the big billiard family to get through this difficult period. We stand in solidarity with these clubs, especially the most vulnerable. The operation “ Covid-19 resilience ” , launched in this direction, has been extended beyond the initial closing date of September 30, 2020, and will last as long as necessary, with the overwhelming support of the leagues for identi proud the most vulnerable clubs. “
But, as he explains to whoever wants to hear it, nothing will be possible without the solidarity of all: “The French National Olympic and Sports Committee has also launched a“ Support your club ”aid operation. But this solidarity is also based on the ability of our members to take their license now. Joining a club means helping it overcome this ordeal thanks to membership fees, and allowing the federation to come to the aid of clubs in difficulty. “Speech heard but which, for the moment, does not seem to have had the desired effects. To date, the numbers of licensees have fallen to less than 13,000: “Since the shutdown in October, we have lost 25% in terms of licenses. The older players did not return. I think that we will lose more or less 40,000 euros this year ”, concluded the president.