After years of wait, India will finally stage a big ticket cue sports league in August. A senior official at Billiards and Snooker Federation of India confirmed to PTI that the league titled ‘Cue Slam’ will finally take off next month.
Both Indian, including 16-time World Champion Pankaj Advani, and foreign players will be part of the venture, tentatively scheduled from August 19 to 25.
The official launch will take place in Hyderabad next week.
Cue Slam was supposed to take place in 2015 but the initiative had to be shelved indefinitely.
As per the original plan, it was to be a six week tournament with the presence of eight teams.
However, BSFI in collaboration with Sportzlive is going ahead with a week long affair for now with five teams in fray.
The organisers are keeping only 6 Red snooker and pool event for the inaugural edition, leaving billiards for future editions.
When asked about his thoughts on the league finally taking off, Indian great Advani said: “It is finally happening and it is something that our wonderful sport needed.”
“I have always felt that cue sports is a very spectator friendly sport and it should be shown on Indian television a lot more, so that it catches up with the popularity of other sports. “I hope the league will grow and become bigger and better with each passing year,” said Advani, who won the Asian snooker title with Malkit Singh Laxman Rawat earlier this month.
The league should keep the fans engaged with each contest not expected to last more than 10 minutes.
It will also be shown live on a leading sports channel.
“Having our sport shown live on television is something I have been talking about for a while. The other leagues that have taken place in India are all shown live and because of that the sport’s popularity has grown significantly. “I am pretty confident a lot more people will start following our game with the league being shown on television,” Advani added.