Pune new hub of billiards: Geet Sethi

“Pune has gradually established itself as a hub of snooker and billiards in India,and the enthusiasm that the city has for the sport is refreshing,” said renowned cueist Geet Sethi.

Written by Express News Service | Pune | Published: July 19, 2010 5:33 am

“Pune has gradually established itself as a hub of snooker and billiards in India,and the enthusiasm that the city has for the sport is refreshing,” said renowned cueist Geet Sethi. The six-time billiards world champion is in the city to participate in the IBSF World Billiards Championship,which will take place at the PYC Hindu Gymkhana from July 20-28. “The World Championship is the most prestigious event in the billiards calendar,and it will definitely be a great event to witness,” he said.

This is the first time Pune has been selected to host an event of this magnitude. “We have received an overwhelming response right from the sponsors to spectators,and the enthusiasm in the city is amazing,” said Rajan Khinvasara,vice president of the BSFI and the Billiards and Snooker Association of Maharashtra.

Sethi went on to explain that the playing field in this year’s championship,which features players from about 15 countries,is an extremely competitive one. “Players like Peter Gilchrist,Mike Russel and Rockston Chapman will definitely be tough to beat. Gilchrist,especially,is in fantastic form,” he said. He also went on to mention Australian youngster Mathew Bolton as a player to watch out for.

Talking about the Indian team’s chances,Sethi said,“We have a trump card in Pankaj Advani,who is not only enjoying a run of excellent form leading up to the event,but is also the defending champion. The rest of us have also been practicing and are confident of giving a good performance.”

The legendary player also welcomed the decision of the BSFI to make the dress code more casual than the orthodox waistcoat and bowtie combination. “It is a good sign that the BSFI is listening to the demands and requests of the players,” he said. “The world of sport itself is gradually changing,and the change in attire will definitely make it more colourful and fun to watch.”

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