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National cueists test skills at local pool house
Sunday, August 4, 2013

The national cueists tested their game outside of their training venue Billiards and Snooker Hall of the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas yesterday.

The quartet of Ahmad Taufiq Murni (pic), Pg Anak Hj Abdul Awadi ZH Pg Anak Hj Latifuddin, Hj Md Alirani Hj Besar and Mohd Qusyairi Zainuddin took to the tables at a local pool house in Gadong for sparring purposes.

They are gearing up for the 5th Golden Break 9-Ball Invitational Championship 2013 in Kuala Lumpur from August 17-24.

The competition serves as a benchmark for the upcoming Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Myanmar in December.

National cue sports coach Lim Tat Hwe felt that a change of environment is a good test for his charges.

"We want the players to play in the public. The environment is different and there will be spectators.

"The feel of the table is also different and it is good to get out of the usual training venue for a bit," said Lim in an interview with The Brunei Times yesterday.

Taufiq, the Sultanate's top cueist, agrees with his coach and prefers the fun factor on competing against some unknowns.

"Training has been as usual for me but this is a good test period. I feel that it is more fun and exciting to play outside," said Taufiq.

"There are some good players out there and you can challenge them on their 'home' table," he added.

Despite the month of Ramadhan, Taufiq is working hard and hopes that he will able to keep up his form.

"There (Fasting) is no effect on me maybe because I'm used to it already. I'm looking forward to playing more sparring games," said Taufiq.

"I'm constantly working on my break. I want to be more consistent with it because it is a very important factor of the game," he said.

"I know that the upcoming tournament will be difficult because there will be a tough field of players. But I'm looking forward to it," continued Taufiq.

The 24-year-old is coming off a string of good performances. He finished fifth out of 48 players at the 4th Asian Indoor & Martial Arts Games in South Korea in early July and followed that up by capturing the Labuan 9-Ball International Championship Open 2013.

The annual tournament in Kuala Lumpur will be expecting some big names from China, Taiwan and the Philippines.

The competition offers a cash prize of US$8,000 to the winner while the runner-up will take home US$4,000.

Semi-finalists will be awarded US$2,000 while quarter-finalists will get US$1,000.

The last-16 will take home US$500 while the last-32 will get US$200.

Trophies and medals will also be awarded to the respective winners.

Courtesy from Brunei Times