Brunei cueists Ahmad Taufiq
Murni (Top) and Ak Md Saiful Azri
Pg Roslee (Above) both fell at
the first hurdle at the SEA
Games in Palembang, Indonesia,
yesterday. Pictures: BT/ Yee
National cueist Ahmad Taufiq Murni was given no chance to showcase what he was capable of yesterday.
The World No 66, according to the World Pool-Billiards Association, was tamed 7-0 by Singapore's Toh Lian Han in the 8-ball singles event of the 26th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games at the OPI Convention Centre in Palembang, Indonesia.
Toh was in full attacking mode right from the start to break clear in the first rack. On the other hand, Ahmad Taufiq scratched on the break in the second rack resulting in Toh clearing once again.
The Singapore cueist was relentless in his assault and didn't allow the Bruneian to get up from his seat clearing the table in the third frame from the break for a 3-0 lead.
Ahmad Taufiq, who carried the national flag during the opening ceremony on Friday at the Gelora Sriwijaya Stadium here, had to settle for another dry break in the fourth. Toh made no mistake to clear the table before another break clear in the next frame to put himself 5-0 up.
The 23-year-old Ahmad Taufiq finally got to pick up his cue stick when he made a ball on the break in the sixth frame. It was also in the same frame that Toh eventually missed his first shot in the whole match, but still managed to win the rack to put Ahmad Taufiq hanging on a thread.
The last frame was a tricky one with both players employing some safety shots, but Toh was just too good yesterday, sweeping the matchup against Brunei's most prolific cueist.
Ahmad Taufiq spent most of the match just warming the chair. Asked what was going through his mind during the game, he told The Brunei Times: "I was thinking on how to adjust my break. But when I finally got the ball I couldn't do what I wanted since I had no chance (to get to the table) to warm myself up.
"My opponent played very well at the start and my breaks left him a good table to easily finish off (the tie)," he added.
It was a double for Singapore as Chan Keng Kwang also triumphed over Ahmad Taufiq's teammate Ak Md Saiful Azri Pg Roslee with a 7-3 scoreline in the earlier game.
Ak Md Saiful Azri looked a little shaky but got off to a good start to open up a 3-1 lead, but he missed the five-ball in the fifth rack which allowed his opponent to change the momentum.
The Bruneian could have kept the advantage, but also missed the eight-ball that allowed Chan to tie the scores at 3-3.
The tide had changed and with the scores at 4-3 Ak Md Saiful Azri had a chance to clear the table, but he failed to call the pocket that resulted in a lose turn which made him trail further behind.
Chan was growing in confidence and went on to snap up the victory.
"The two mistakes changed the momentum of the game. Had I made the five-ball then I would have established a 4-1 lead. Things would have been different," said Ak Md Saiful Azri to The Brunei Times yesterday after his match.
"I got a bit careless on not calling the shot despite it being obvious on which pocket it would go to," he added.
The campaign is not over for the duo at the Nov 11-22 competition as they still have a chance to win medals when the 9-ball singles event begins next week.
Courtesy from Brunei Times