National cueists Ak Md Saiful
Azri Pg Roslee (Top) and Ahmad
Taufiq Murni (Above) are ready
for their openers at the 26th SEA
The cue sports team are more than ready to set the tables ablaze at the 26th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games.
The competition kicks off with the 8-ball singles event today at the OPI Convention Centre in Palembang, Indonesia.
The Sultanate, who will have to overcome strong opposition from Singapore in the first round, are seeking revenge against their opponents.
Ak Md Saiful Azri Pg Roslee will see action first going up against Singapore's No 1 Chan Keng Kwang at 1pm today.
The other match pits Ahmad Taufiq Murni against Toh Lian Han, who together with Chan won bronze in the Men's 9-ball doubles at the 2009 SEA Games in Laos, at 4pm.
The Bruneian duo had trained with World No 7 Chang Jung-Lin in Berakas to prepare for the Games.
Ak Md Saiful Azri played against Chan and lost to him at the World Pool Masters Qualifiers in Kuala Lumpur in April last year.
But the national cueist felt that it would be different this time as they were competing in 8-ball instead of 9-ball.
"The speed of the table is okay and I adjusted pretty quickly. I'm feeling alright and hopefully I can win the match," Ak Md Saiful Azri, the triple gold medallist at 3rd Borneo Games in 2009, told The Brunei Times yesterday.
On the other hand, Ahmad Taufiq succumbed 11-9 to Toh in the preliminary quarter-finals of the 9-ball event in the 2007 SEA Games in Korat, Thailand, and is eager to even the score with the Singaporean.
"Everything is fine at the moment. I lost to him before, but I never got to compete against him in 8-ball," said the 23-year-old Bruneian during an interview here.
"I'm ready to play and hopefully I can avenge my loss to him the last time," added the World No 66, according to the World Pool-Billiards Association (WPA) rankings.
Ahmad Taufiq was also thankful to be chosen as the nation's flag-bearer for yesterday's opening ceremony of the 26th SEA Games at the Stadium, which is also known as the Jakabaring Stadium, here.
National cue sports coach Lim Tat Hwe also felt that the players were ready for their opening matches.
"Training has gone really well since we arrived (in Palembang on Wednesday) and they have adjusted to the tables quickly. Now it is up to them to play to their best ... they will have a good chance (to win) their matches," said Lim.
The team also thanked His Royal Highness Prince Hj Sufri Bolkiah, the President of the Brunei Darussalam National Olympic Council (BNOC), for taking time off to visit them during training on Thursday.
Courtesy from Brunei Times