How Did Masako Katsura become the ‘First Lady of Billiards?

We’ve all heard of the greats in sports—Michael Jordan, Babe Ruth, and Serena Williams. But what about Masako Katsura? If you haven’t heard her name before, you should know that she was one of the most influential billiards players of all time. In this blog post, we will explore how Masako Katsura achieved fame and notoriety as “The First Lady of Billiards.” We’ll discuss her early life, her career highlights, and even delve into some lesser-known facts about this amazing woman who changed the face of the game forever.

Masako Katsura’s Early Life

Masako Katsura was born in Osaka, Japan on October 10, 1963. She began playing pool at the age of six, and quickly developed a reputation as a prodigy. By the time she was eight, she was already good enough to compete in tournaments against adults. In 1979, at the age of sixteen, she became the youngest player ever to win the Japanese National Pool Championship.

Katsura’s success in her native country led her to seek out greater challenges abroad. In 1980, she moved to the United States to attend college and play competitively in American pool tournaments. She quickly established herself as one of the top players in the country, winning several championships over the next few years.

In 1986, Katsura made history by becoming the first woman ever to win the prestigious World Pool Championship. She defeated legendary player Ewa Laurance in the final match, solidifying her place as one of the greats in the sport. Since then, she has gone on to win numerous other titles and is widely considered to be one of the greatest pool players of all time.

Masako Katsura’s Billiards Career

Masako Katsura is a Japanese pool player who has been called the “First Lady of Billiards.” She began playing pool at the age of 16, and quickly rose to prominence in the world of competitive pool.

Katsura has won numerous national and international championships, including the World Pool-Billiard Association World Nine-ball Championship in 2006. She is also a two-time winner of the Japan Nine-ball Championship.

In addition to her competitive success, Katsura has also worked as a billiards instructor and commentator. She has authored several books on billiards, and she currently serves as the president of the Women’s Professional Billiard Association.

Masako Katsura’s later years

Since her retirement from competitive billiards in the early 1970s, Masako Katsura has remained an influential and popular figure in the sport. In her later years, she has been active as a coach, referee, and promoter of the game. She has also been involved in several businesses ventures, including a successful pool hall in Tokyo.

Katsura has continued to be an important ambassador for billiards in Japan and around the world. She remains a popular public speaker and is frequently sought out by media outlets for her expert opinion on the game. In recent years, she has been working to promote women’s participation in billiards, and she is widely respected as a pioneer in the sport.


Masako Katsura is an inspiring figure in the world of billiards and her story reminds us that it’s never too late to achieve greatness. With hard work, dedication and a passion for the game, she was able to break barriers and become one of the leading players in the sport. Her success serves as a reminder that anything can be achieved if you put your mind to it. Whether you are just starting out or already at the top, Masako Katsura’s example should inspire you to take your game to new heights!

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