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The Snail's Tale
Although space doesn't allow for a complete description of all of Taberski's victories between 1916 and 1918, I can touch upon a few of the most important here. The first was his challenge match with Johnny Layton, which was held over three days in Layton's hometown of Sedalia, Missouri. Layton was Sedalia's first-ever national champion (in pool or any other sport) and the crowd was clearly behind him. He shot quickly, and with confidence, sometimes using his right hand, sometimes his left. Taberski, by contrast, annoyed spectators with his exasperating slowness and the first night did not go well for him. It seemed that the faster Layton shot, the slower Taberski became. To the untutored, it seemed a sign of uncertainty, of timidity, especially given the drubbing he received. Final score after the first night: Layton 150, Taberski 109.
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