Prasad to defend snooker title

Shahil Prasad competes in the South Seas Classic Open in Lautoka. Picture: FILE/REINAL CHAND

FIJI number one Sahil Prasad will defend the Sambhu Lal Construction (Fiji) Ltd-sponsored Champion of Champions (COC) snooker event which starts at the Merchants Club in Suva this evening. Sahil topped the Billiards and Snooker Association of Fiji (BSAF) rankings chart last season after winning the final two rankings championships.

He finished with 157 points, 17 ahead of second placed Deepak Jai Ram. BSAF president Praneel Singh said the top 16 players available for the tournament had been identified. Singh said they had been slotted into four pools.

“We are starting early on Friday evening and will be using all three tables at the Merchants Club,” he said.

“There will be five frame games during the pool play and the two top players from each pool will qualify for the quarter-finals.

“There are plans to increase the frames from the quarter-final stages but this will all depend on the time available.”

The date for the BSAF annual general meeting will be decided during a committee meeting this weekend.

Singh said Sambhu Lal Construction (Fiji) Limited has come on board as one of the major sponsors for the sport.

“They have given $1000 for this COC and have pledged to sponsor more tournaments this year,” he said.

“It is heartening to see a Savusavu based company backing the sport.

“Our aim this year is to continue the development work. We will look at refurbishing the tables at the clubs in Lautoka.

After the Oceania Billiards and Snooker Federation annual meeting in March we will know where we stand in terms of availability of funds and expertise for our 2020 projects.”

The following players will feature in the COC as per their 2019 BSAF ranking points: Sahil Prasad 157, Deepak Jai Ram 140, Walter Robinson 132, Rahil Prasad 127, Praneel Singh 94, Viliame Umu 80, Epeli Bua 78, Yogen Prasad 77, Suresh Chauhan 71, Ravi Naidu 67, Soani Tamani 67, Reemal Narayan 63, Salen Gounder 58, Rajnesh Nand 58, Pritesh Khatri 54, Anant Raj 48

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