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Patso44
05-24-2011, 10:25 PM
I was wondering if anyone know more information on Harold Worst. I would like to see if there is any nice videos of his game or any stories to tell. Please let me know!


Thanks.

Terry Ardeno
05-25-2011, 12:53 AM
Harold Worst was born on Sept 29, 1929 in Grand Rapids, Michigan and died of cancer of the lymph glands on June 16, 1966. He started playing at the age of 15.

There's a thread on here somewhere about the greatest players of all time.
If I can dig it up later this afternoon, I'll post a link to it. But in that thread, Jay Helfert posts some really good thoughts on Mr. Worst. Jay is very high on him being ranked one of the greatest cueists of all time. Few would argue that point.

The thing that stand out with Harold Worst is that he won major championships in 3C (the 1954 World 3C Championship) as well as in pocket billiards (the 1965 Johnston City 9 Ball Championship, 1965 Johnston City 14.1 Championship & the 1965 Johnston City All-Around Championship. He also won the 1965 Stardust One Pocket Championship as well as the 1965 All-Around Championship at the Stardust.

I've read that he was sometimes considered just a tad brusk but that was due in part to his fierce demeanor while engaged in money matches. He was known as a stone cold gambler with an extra talent for making the most minute & difficult cut shots. To say he was a confident player is akin to saying that water is wet.

He never let on to any of his peers that he was suffering from the Hodgkins disease that would ultimately kill him.

George Fels, one of the most revered pool writers ever, wrote the most informative piece on Mr Worst that I ever read. It was published in the Dec 1993 issue of Billiards Digest. Out of respect for Mr Fels, I was careful not to plagiarize any of his work. Perhaps he will add his thoughts & insights to this thread.

I'm hoping that Jay will chime in here because he always adds insightful comments to any discussion of the great champions.

curlyscues
05-25-2011, 01:27 AM
Harold actually started playing a lot earlier than 15, as his dad had a billiard table in his basement. i think by 15 he had already been taken under Willie Hoppes wing.

My dad who was good friends with Harold had told me he started at around 5 years old. It is because of their friendship that i started playing pool.

My dad used to drop my brother and myself off at the poolroom when we were young to keep us busy for a while. (one of which was run by Harold Sr.) and a few years later it was run by Carl, Harold's brother who used to rack for me and give me money. :wink: (Carl wasn't as good as Harold.)

M.C.

Terry Ardeno
05-25-2011, 03:22 AM
Harold actually started playing a lot earlier than 15, as his dad had a billiard table in his basement. i think by 15 he had already been taken under Willie Hoppes wing.

My dad who was good friends with Harold had told me he started at around 5 years old. It is because of their friendship that i started playing pool.

My dad used to drop my brother and myself off at the poolroom when we were young to keep us busy for a while. (one of which was run by Harold Sr.) and a few years later it was run by Carl, Harold's brother who used to rack for me and give me money. :wink: (Carl wasn't as good as Harold.)

M.C.

I'm not too certain that he started that young. Here's why....Hoppe didn't play Worst at all until Harold was 19. That's when Hoppe took the interest in Worst. Harold was in high school when he started to seriously pursue pool. I've done some research on most of the great players & I have his start listed at age 15. I'm still working on finding out his HR in 14.1. Him & Lassiter's HR have been super hard to find. His father (who was a shoe salesman) owning a table in their basement may be true. But the story goes that Harold was 15 when he took up pool.

Here's a link that has some video of Harold vs Larry Johnson. There's also a nice article about him as well.

http://untoldstoriesharoldworst.blogspot.com/

freddy the beard
05-25-2011, 04:09 AM
Here are 3 links off of my site www.bankingwiththebeard.com to 3 vintage videos of Harold Worst.

Http://johnstoncityvideosll.blogspot.com/2008/06/johnston-city-1965-harold-worst-and.html


Http://johnstoncityvideosll.blogspot.com/2008/06/blog-post.html

http://johnstoncityvideosll.blogspot.com/2008/06/1965-johnston-city-worst-boston-shorty.html

curlyscues
05-25-2011, 04:18 AM
sorry for the confusion, i was talking about 3 cushion not pool which he did start a lot later.

although i don't know his high run in 14.1, i do know he used to play a friend of mine 100 no count to his 50 no count.

M.C.

Neil
05-25-2011, 05:16 AM
.............

Terry Ardeno
05-25-2011, 05:16 AM
Here are 3 links off of my site www.bankingwiththebeard.com to 3 vintage videos of Harold Worst.

Http://johnstoncityvideosll.blogspot.com/2008/06/johnston-city-1965-harold-worst-and.html


Http://johnstoncityvideosll.blogspot.com/2008/06/blog-post.html

http://johnstoncityvideosll.blogspot.com/2008/06/1965-johnston-city-worst-boston-shorty.html

Beard,
I'm sorry for not referencing those vids from your site. I know they're there but honestly, just plum forgot 'em. I spend lots of time on your site, especially listening to Mort's interviews with Crane, Balsis & co.

I always try to give you a little plug here & there so this post will serve in that capacity!

Terry Ardeno
05-25-2011, 05:24 AM
sorry for the confusion, i was talking about 3 cushion not pool which he did start a lot later.

although i don't know his high run in 14.1, i do know he used to play a friend of mine 100 no count to his 50 no count.

M.C.

No big deal curly. We all get mixed up at times. I do a lot! Thanks for being interested in pool history!

Terry Ardeno
05-25-2011, 05:27 AM
I don't know his high run either, but it is at least 200. He was playing George Ellis (now deceased also) in a 200 point exhibition match. George started with a run of 150. He said he thought he finally had the best of it and asked Harold if he wanted to bet $50 dollars on the match.(a good sum at the time) Harold said yes, and proceeded to run 200 and out on George.

Good story Neil.
If Mr Ellis hadn't ask to bet some $ on the outcome, Harold might only have run 150.....

jalapus logan
05-25-2011, 06:49 AM
Well, apparently Ronnie Allen had a held Harold Worst in high regard. You can hear what he says about him in this recording (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c05AHZrvbU0) kindly posted by Fast Lenny.

grindz
05-25-2011, 09:10 AM
sorry for the confusion, i was talking about 3 cushion not pool which he did start a lot later.

although i don't know his high run in 14.1, i do know he used to play a friend of mine 100 no count to his 50 no count.

M.C.

Hi Curly,

You've got me curious. :wink: Inquiring minds want to know... ?

td

grindz
05-25-2011, 09:14 AM
I'm not too certain that he started that young. Here's why....Hoppe didn't play Worst at all until Harold was 19. That's when Hoppe took the interest in Worst. Harold was in high school when he started to seriously pursue pool. I've done some research on most of the great players & I have his start listed at age 15. I'm still working on finding out his HR in 14.1. Him & Lassiter's HR have been super hard to find. His father (who was a shoe salesman) owning a table in their basement may be true. But the story goes that Harold was 15 when he took up pool.

Here's a link that has some video of Harold vs Larry Johnson. There's also a nice article about him as well.

http://untoldstoriesharoldworst.blogspot.com/

Great info. Terry!!

I don't know how old they were at the time.... I'll have to ask him next time we talk..... but my Dad and Harold used to go to the pool hall, where my Dad would place small bets (so Harold could keep his 'amatuer' status)
and go get some ice cream when he won. I don't know what age, but my Dad just said "when we (they) were kids".

td

Joe_Jaguar
05-25-2011, 09:36 AM
I was wondering if anyone know more information on Harold Worst. I would like to see if there is any nice videos of his game or any stories to tell. Please let me know!


Thanks.

Worst at Johnston City on DVD:
http://www.jayhelfert.com/?page_id=39

George Fels
05-25-2011, 10:15 AM
Thank you, Terry. I believe we have to consider Harold Worst as one of the greatest natural pool players who ever lived (it wasn't even his first game; caroms was). Also, his winning world-class tournaments while he was literally dying on his feet ranks as some of the most courageous play we've ever seen. I met a guy who served with Worst in the Navy, and he said, "His powers of focus were unbelievable. I saw him watch some men swab the deck once, for FOUR HOURS...and he didn't change a thing, not his posture, not his expression." While stationed in Korea, Worst claimed he won so much playing pool and billiards at the servicemen's clubs that he could actually afford a triplex apartment! GF

MoonshineMattK
05-25-2011, 10:17 AM
Ronnie Allen talks about Harold Worst in one of these stories but I dont remember which one.

http://www.tropicanabowlingalley.com/ronnie.html

curlyscues
05-25-2011, 10:50 AM
Hi Curly,

You've got me curious. :wink: Inquiring minds want to know... ?

td

what did you want to know?

M.C.

grindz
05-25-2011, 11:00 AM
what did you want to know?

M.C.

Who was the 50 no count?

td

curlyscues
05-25-2011, 11:14 AM
Who was the 50 no count?

td

Steve Vroma, he and harold used to play a lot up at Chinooks (sp). Not sure he ever won that game either and Steve used to play real sporty.

Steve was there with Harold when he won Johnson city too.