Snooker’s flying Dutchman
Jan Verhaas became the first non-Briton to referee the World Championship final when he donned the white gloves at the Crucible Theatre in 2003.
The Dutchman described the world final as “the pinnacle of a referee’s career.” He has now taken charge of five world finals including 2013. Verhaas, whose suave demeanour earned him the nickname ‘James Bond’ from fans at 2002 China Open, first refereed in local tournaments and pro-ams at a club in Rotterdam.
Date of Birth: October 5, 1966
Born: Maassluis, Holland
Lives: Brielle, Holland
Highest break: 78 – never got near it before or since.
Qualified as Referee: Class 3 in 1990, Class 1 in 1995.
First Pro Match: Tony Drago v Steve Davis in 1993.
Most memorable match: Refereeing the three Paul Hunter Wembley Masters finals.
Most embarrassing moment: Oversleeping twice in one day before a Premier League match at Cleethorpes.
If you weren’t a referee what would you do: I’d probably still be working as a process operator for Shell Chemicals.
Which is the toughest rule to apply: The push shot is very difficult to judge. I normally go off the honesty of the players.
What do you carry in your pockets: Two ball markers, pen and coin (two and half gilders).
Where do you get your gloves: From fellow referee Paul Collier. I would normally use six pairs per season.
Interests: Open water diving, watching football, cycling