Player Profile

Ralph Greenleaf

NameDate of Birth Country
Ralph Greenleaf03-11-1899United States

Ralph Greenleaf (Born November 3, 1899)

Ralph Greenleaf (November 3, 1899 in Monmouth, Illinois – March 15, 1950 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) was an American professional pool and carom billiards player, a twenty-time World Pocket Billiards Champion, whose ability and charisma dominated the sport during his heyday.
His obituary in The New York Times said of Greenleaf, in March 1950: "What Babe Ruth did for baseball, Dempsey did for fighting, Tilden did for tennis...Greenleaf did for pocket billiards." 
He was one of the first three members inducted into the Billiard Congress of America's Hall of Fame, in 1966. He was ranked number 3 on the Billiards Digest 50 Greatest Players of the Century
Greenleaf married vaudeville actress Amelia Ruth Parker, a Eurasian known by the stage names "Princess Nai Tai" and "The Oriental Nightingale".
In a pool championship match, Greenleaf was a fierce competitor, winning his first world title in 1919, as well as others, off and on, through 1937. His only unbeatable enemy was considered the bottle, though even his worst bouts rarely seemed to interfere with his performance. In 1942, he came in third place, behind Willie Hoppe and Welker Cochran in a World Championship Three-cushion billiards match.
During this era, the press used euphemisms like "playboy" for sports idols and other public figures who, like Greenleaf, suffered from severe alcoholism. In 1935, the media reported that Greenleaf "fell off the wagon" when he vanished just before a crucial tournament in New York and woke up in Oklahoma under arrest as a vagrant. In order for him to be released, he had to prove to the constable his identity by walking across the street to a pool hall located in front of the jailhouse in Okmulgee by running 87 balls consecutively. Another distinction of this era in the 1930s is that pool games were traditionally played on billiards tables that were 5 feet by 10 feet, as opposed to today's professional standards which have tables that are 4.5 ft × 9 ft, and the (often clay or ivory) balls were bigger than today's synthetic plastic and resin pool balls.
Greenleaf had a hobby that he took seriously which was raising turkeys and chickens at his farm on the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland, in which he made a profit. His last championship title was in 1937 when he defeated Irving Crane by a score of 125 to minus one.
He died suddenly at the age of 50 from acute internal hemorrhage in the waiting room of a hospital in Philadelphia. He had been ill for several days, but had refused to seek medical treatment by going to a hospital because of an upcoming match he was to have played in New York, scheduled several days after he passed.

World Pocket Billiards Championship titles
1919 (December) vs. Bennie Allen
1920 (November) vs. Arthur Woods
1921 (October) vs. Arthur Woods
1921 (December) vs. Arthur Woods
1922 (February) vs. Thomas Hueston
1922 (May) vs. Walter Franklin
1922 (October) vs. Bennie Allen
1922 (December) vs. Arthur Church
1923 (January) vs. Thomas Hueston
1924 (April) vs. Bennie Allen
1926 (November) vs. Erwin Rudolph
1928 (March) vs. Frank Taberski
1928 (May) vs. Andrew St. Jean
1929 (December) vs. Erwin Rudolph
1931 (December) vs. George Kelly
1932 (December) vs. Jimmy Caras
1933 (May) vs. Andrew Ponzi
1937 (April) vs. Andrew Ponzi
1937 (November) vs. Irving Crane
1937 (December) vs. Irving Crane

Featured Video


  • World Snooker Championship 2020
    The world has come to a standstill due to COVID-19 Pandemic and it’s cascading effect has paused the World’s major events like Olympic in ...
    Written By : Team Rkg Snooker

    Read more
  • Tarun Chandra : A great personality and a great sportsperson
    Tarun Chandra, the son of Sheel Chandra, who left us on 5th Oct. 2019, was a great Indian billiard player. He learned the rudiments of billiards from ...
    Written By : Rkg Snooker

    Read more
  • Pankaj Advani Won 22nd world title
    One of India’s most notable sportsperson Pankaj Advani extended his tally of world titles to 22. He won a fourth straight final in 150 up format...
    Written By : Rkg Snooker

    Read more
  • Pleased to challenge the fantasy that you can not have some expertise in both billiards and snooker: Pankaj Advani
    In the wake of finishing a Career Grand Slam in sign games this year, the cueist needs to increase current standards significantly higher as he gets r...
    Written By : Rkg Snooker

    Read more
  • Pankaj Advani adds one more title to his Silverware Collection
    An outstanding Indian billiard and snooker player Pankaj Arjan Advani has added one more feather to his cap by defeating Thanawat Tirapongpaiboon...
    Written By : Rkg Snooker

    Read more
    Snooker is a sport which is largely and widely being attached with the elite class and hence is explored less by other people round the world. But, th...
    Written By : RKG Snooker

    Read more
    Living in a strife-torn country, where bombs, missiles and death can come any time, it takes guts and single-minded purpose for a sportsperson to exce...
    Written By : Pratyush Raj

    Read more
  • RKG Indian 2nd 10 Red Snooker Championship 2019 in Nainital
    Ravindra Kumar Gupta(RKG) In its continued efforts to promote Cue Sports, Mr Ravindra Kumar Gupta promoter of RKG Snooker Organised With The  ...
    Written By : RKG Snooker

    Read more
  • Congratulations to Two Time Open Disability Championship winner Raja Iyer
    A person with a physical disability loses all hopes in life as it proves very disadvantageous for him. But with sheer grit, determination, dedica...
    Written By : Ravindra Kumar Gupta

    Read more
  • Ronnie The Rocket Reaching the Comet!
    Ronnie O’Sullivan became the first snooker player to make 1,000 career century breaks after successfully defending his Players Championship titl...
    Written By : Yashbir Sharma

    Read more

View All

How to Play Cue Sports

  • Cue Sports
    Snooker is one of the most popular billiards game in the world. Similar to pool, the snooker game takes place on a felt-covered table with six pockets, a cue stick and a set of balls. Here you can learn how to play Snooker.

    Obtain the proper equipment- Snooker is played...

    Read more