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Efren Reyes

The following is just a summary of pool player Efren Reyes' biography. The reason for this is because in 1996, an excellent Efren Reyes biography and profile was written for "Business World", a national daily newspaper, and published April 13, 1996. It is the best Efren Reyes bio written to this date, and probably will remain as such. In researching Efren Reyes for the Billiards Forum, I came to find that almost every other article written about him was derived or copied from that 1996 Business World article on Efren Reyes.

Efren Reyes

Efren Reyes Childhood

In Pampagna, Philippines on August 26, 1954, Efren Reyes, better known as Efren “Bata” Reyes, was born. At the age of 5, he moved to Manila along with his family due to poverty. At his uncle’s small billiard hall, he served as a billiard attendant and from there he started learning and understanding the cue sports. Because as a boy he was short to reach the billiard table, he used soft drink cases for him to be able to move around the table. At night, he also used the same pool table for his bed.

At this young age he became very skilled in cue sports. He was called Bata, which means “Kid” in Filipino since there was also an older pool player named Efren at that time. So for them to be able to distinguish which Efren it was, they started calling him Bata.

He was discovered by promoters after establishing himself as a winner playing three-cushion billiards back in the 1960s and 1970s.

Efren Reyes Cesar Morales

During the 1980s, he came to the United States to hustle when he became a top-class billiard player in his homeland. He won the tournament and earned $80,000 USD in one week. It also made him and internationally recognized hero back home.

Efren Reyes Wife and Family Life

He then met Susan Reyes and married her and they were blessed with three children. His son, Frennie Reyes, once competed in the Asian Nine-ball Tour.

Efren Reyes Career Highlights in the US

Not long after, he began winning series of tournaments in the U.S, Europe and some parts of Asia. This winning started to gain attention and recognition in the world of billiards and pools. For him to be able to compete, he hid his identity and used aliases. In 1990s, alongside with Jose Parica and Francisco Bustamante, he became one of the elite players of the Philippines.

But what made him most famous was when he become the first non-American to win an event, after he defeated Nick Varner in the finals of the US Open Nine-Ball Championship in 1994.

Two years later, in 1996, Efren Reyes came face-to-face with Earl Strickland to a tournament named after a movie The Color of Money. The three-day event was a race-to-120 challenge match of 9-ball and a winner-take-all prize of US$100,000 held in Hong Kong. In the pool event, this was the largest single-winning purse ever.

In 1999, it was Efren Bata Reyes who became the first to win via national television the WPA World 9-ball Championship. Although it was Earl Strickland who really first won the tournament but it was not recognized yet by the WPA. On the later part, Reyes was acknowledged as the winner of the two world championships.

Reyes competed with over 700 players and won first prize beating Neils Feijen in the International Billiard Tournament in Tokyo with a winning of US$170K. It was the biggest first prize in pool tournament in 2001.

Defeating Mika Immonen in 2002 International Challenge of Champions in a deciding rack after both players split sets, he won the $50,000 winner-take-all.

Before the end of 2004, he became the first player to win world championships in two different disciplines in WPA history after beating Marlon Manalo in WPA World Eight Ball Champion.

A winning a record-breaking prize of $200,000 USD, Reyes beat fellow Hall of Fame Mike Sigel in the IPT King of the Hill 8-ball Shootout with two sets to none (8-0 and 8-5) in December 2005.

In the inaugural World Cup of Pool in 2006, Efren Reyes and Francisco Bustamante represented their country as Team Philippines defeating Team USA,Earl Strickland and Rodney Morris to capture the title.

During the same year, Reyes won over Rodney Morris 8-6 in the IPT World Open Eight Ball Championship which earned him $500,000. Unfortunately, Reyes wasn't able to claim the full amount of the prize money due to IPT's lack of funds to pay him out in 2007.

With the Filipino tandem Efren Reyes and Francisco Bustamante won over the German Thorsten Hohmann and Ralf Souquet in 2009 with the grueling score of 11-9 taking them to their second championship title.

In the 12th annual Derby City Classic in 2010, Efren Reyes became the most successful player in the tournament’s history as he hold his fifth title as the overall champion.

Efren Reyes - Biography

  • Date of Birth: 1954-08-26
  • Place of Birth: Philippines
  • Country of Residence: Philippines
  • Efren Reyes Nickname(s): Bata, The Magician, The Champ, (part of) The Filipino Invasion, Cezar Morales (an early alias)
  • Efren Reyes Sponsors: AMF Puyat Sports (1989 - Present)

If you know of any other interesting information about the life of pool player Efren Reyes, send us an update using the contact form below.

Efren Reyes Cue Sports Records and Accomplishments

Efren Reyes has many accomplishments, wins, and records. Here is a moderately incomplete list of the notable achievements and titles earned by Reyes:

Efren Reyes Titles 1985-1999

  • 1985 Chicago Billiard Cafe Open
  • 1985 Houston Red's 9-Ball Open (Efren Reyes used alias "Cezar Morales" as reported by Accu-Stats Feb 1985)
  • 1985 Sands Regency Nine-Ball Championship
  • 1985 Tar Heel Open
  • 1985 Willard's Open
  • 1986 Sands Regency Nine-Ball Championship
  • 1987 SEA Games Jakarta - Gold Medalist (snooker, 3 gold medals)
  • 1988 PBA McDermott Masters Nine-Ball
  • 1990 World Cup (Taipei)
  • 1992 International 8-Ball Classic
  • 1992 International 9-Ball Classic
  • 1992 World 9-Ball Open (Tokyo)
  • 1993 World Team Championship (Team Philippines)
  • 1994 PBT Bicycle Club Invitational
  • 1994 US Open 9-Ball Championship
  • 1995 Bicycle Club VII
  • 1995 Maine Event 14.1 Championships
  • 1995 PBT World 8 Ball Championship
  • 1995 Pro Tour Nine-Ball Championship
  • 1995 Sands Regency Open 21 9-Ball Championship
  • 1995 Player of the Year, Billiards Digest Magazine
  • 1996 Camel World Nine-Ball Championship
  • 1996 Florida Flare Up III 9-Ball Championship
  • 1996 PBT Legends of 9-Ball Championship
  • 1996 PBT Western Open 9-Ball Championship
  • 1996 PBT World 8-Ball Championship
  • 1996 The Color of Money 9-Ball Champion (Efren Reyes vs Earl Strickland)
  • 1997 PCA Shooters Challenge
  • 1997 PCA Treasure Island Resort Event
  • 1998 Camel South Jersey 10-Ball Open
  • 1998 World 8-Ball Championship
  • 1999 Derby City Classic Master of the Table
  • 1999 Derby City Classic One-Pocket Championship
  • 1999 ESPN Ultimate 9-Ball Challenge
  • 1999 ESPN Ultimate Shootout
  • 1999 Victor Chandler World Pool Championship
  • 1999 Sands Regency Open 29 9-Ball Championship
  • 1999 WPA World Nine-Ball Championship
  • 1999 All Japan Championship (Japan Open)

Efren Reyes Titles 2000-Present

  • 2000 Camel Pro Eight-Ball Championship
  • 2000 PBT World Eight-Ball Championship
  • 2000 Pennsylvania State 9-Ball Championship
  • 2000 US Open One-Pocket Championship
  • 2000 USA Billiards Challenger Event 2
  • 2001 Accu-Stats Eight-Ball Invitational
  • 2001 International Billiard Tournament
  • 2001 The Color of Money II (Efren Reyes vs Earl Strickland)
  • 2001 Tokyo Open 9-Ball Championships
  • 2001 US Masters 9-Ball Championships
  • 2001 World Pool League
  • 2001 Supreme Masters of Billiards Tournament (Alabang, Muntinlupa)
  • 2002 Asian Games Eight-Ball singles (bronze)
  • 2002 Cafe Puro Challenge of the Masters
  • 2002 ESPN International Challenge of Champions
  • 2002 Shooters Labor Day Weekend Open 9-Ball
  • 2002 World Pool League Championships
  • 2003 All Japan Championship
  • 2003 Inducted into the Billiard Congress of America's BCA Hall of Fame (first Asian and Filipino player to be inducted)
  • 2003 Las Vegas 9-Ball Open
  • 2003 Mid-Atlantic 9-Ball Championship
  • 2003 San Miguel Asian 9-Ball Tour (Stop 2, Manila Leg)
  • 2003 World Classic Billiards Tournament
  • 2004 Derby City Classic Master of the Table
  • 2004 Derby City Classic One-Pocket
  • 2004 Derby City Classic "Overall Champion" Bonus
  • 2004 On Cue 3: Intercontinental Conquest
  • 2004 San Miguel Asian 9-Ball Tour (Stop 1, Singapore Leg)
  • 2004 San Miguel Asian 9-Ball Tour (Stop 2, Vietnam Leg)
  • 2004 San Miguel Asian 9-Ball Tour (Stop 4, Taiwan Leg)
  • 2004 WPA World 8-Ball Championship
  • 2004 Inducted into the One-Pocket Hall of Fame
  • 2005 All Japan Championship
  • 2005 Derby City Classic Master of the Table
  • 2005 Derby City Classic 9-Ball
  • 2005 Derby City Classic One-Pocket
  • 2005 IPT King of the Hill Eight-Ball Shootout
  • 2005 San Miguel Asian 9-Ball Tour (Stop 2, Indonesia Leg)
  • 2005 Appointed "Philippine Sports Ambasssador" of the South East Asian Games
  • 2006 Derby City Classic One-Pocket
  • 2006 IPT World Open Eight-Ball Championship
  • 2006 San Miguel Asian 9-Ball Tour (Stop 1, Vietnam Leg)
  • 2006 San Miguel Asian 9-Ball Tour (Stop 4, Indonesia Leg)
  • 2006 World Cup of Pool (with Francisco Bustamante)
  • 2007 Derby City Classic Master of the Table
  • 2007 Derby City Classic One-Pocket
  • 2007 Ranked #2 in "Fans' Top 20 Favorite Players" (a poll done by Pool & Billiard Magazine)
  • 2009 Galveston World Classic One Pocket
  • 2009 World Cup of Pool (with Francisco Bustamante)
  • 2009 World Mixed Doubles Classic (with Rubilen Amit)
  • 2010 Asia vs Europe Challenge Match
  • 2010 Derby City Classic Fatboy Challenge 10-Ball
  • 2010 Derby City Classic Master of the Table
  • 2010 Derby City Classic Nine-Ball
  • 2010 Predator International Ten-Ball Championship
  • 2010 Spanish Open 2010
  • 2011 US Open One Pocket Championship
  • 2011 World Mixed Doubles Classic (with Rubilen Amit)
  • 2012 Chuck Markulis Memorial One-Pocket Division
  • 2014 Derby City Classic One-Pocket Division, Elizabeth, Indiana
  • 2014 2nd Manny Pacquiao Cup Singles, Gensan International Open 10-Ball (Philippines)
  • 2014 Smokin' Aces One-Pocket Shootout
  • 2015 Accu-Stats "Make-It-Happen" One-Pocket Invitational
  • 2016 Accu-Stats "Make-It-Happen" One-Pocket Invitational

Forum questions and answers about Efren Reyes:

Recent news on Efren Reyes:

  • Title: Efren Reyes
  • Author: (Billiards Forum)
  • Published: 1/18/2017 12:35:57 PM
  • Last Updated: 3/15/2017 3:19:45 PM
  • Last Updated By: billiardsforum

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