It was heartbreak for the national cue sports team after the country's two remaining cueists at the 5th Golden Break 9-Ball Invitational Championship 2013 were ousted in the last-32 yesterday.
The country's best cueist, Ahmad Taufiq Murni (pic) failed to equal last year's record of finishing in the top-16 after losing 9-2 to Asian Pool Billiard Union's fourth-ranked cueist Fu Che Wei from Chinese Taipei.
Taufiq started out with a 1-0 lead and kept his game going for an 2-1 advantage in the race-to-9 match, but Fu would fight back and claimed the next eight frames to seal his place in the top-16.
It was also the end of the road for compatriot, Hj Md Alirani Hj Besar, after he fell 9-3 to South Korea's Ha Minuk in an earlier last-32 match.
Hj Md Alirani went into the game on good form after defeating Thailand 9-Ball Championship winner Tanut Makkamontee 9-5 on Monday, but he was unable to replicate his strong showing yesterday.
"The players need to work extra hard after this event," stressed national coach Lim Tat Hwe after the match.
"I know everyone was trying their best to win their matches but we need to train harder, learn from our mistakes and improve," he added.
However Taufiq and Hj Md Alirani will not go home empty handed as they will be awarded US$200 for reaching the last-32.
Taufiq started off by cruising to a 9-1 victory over Singapore's Steve Fong on Tuesday night but he was then shocked 9-0 by multi-titled Patrick Ooi of Malaysia in his next match to drop to the loser's bracket. The 24-year-old then came up with a 9-7 win over Korea's Lee Wansu to ensure his passage to the next round.
Hj Md Alirani kicked off his tournament with a 9-6 win over Malaysia's David Ong before falling 9-4 to Tanut in their first meeting. He then beat Benjin Ong of Singapore 9-1 in the loser's bracket, took Indonesia's Yandi Tan down 9-5 before gaining revenge over Tamut with a 9-5 win.
Two Bruneians, Jong Wee Lee and Kamarul Ariffin Hj Kamis, lost in the second round (round-of-64) on Wednesday.
Jong beat India's Rafath Habib 9-8 in his opener. He then lost 9-3 to Malaysia's Alan Tan and was relegated to the loser's bracket. Jong bounced back with a 9-8 victory over Hamasaki Toshihide of Japan before dropping 9-4 to Singapore's John Lim, bringing his campaign to an end.
Kamarul Ariffin was dumped out after he lost 9-8 to Alan Ang of Malaysia before succumbing to a 9-7 defeat to Singapore's Bala Subramaniam.
Five other Bruneians were eliminated on Monday; Mohd Alias Hj Rashid, Lim Charng Hui, Mohd Qusyairi Zainuddin, Pg Anak Hj Abdul Awadi ZH Pg Anak Hj Latifuddin and Bakthyar Zaini.