KARACHI: Mohammad Majid, who lost to national champion Mohammad Asif 6-4 in the semi-final of the 4th NBP Ranking Snooker Championship, exudes confidence and claims to be good enough to land the world championship if given professional training.
The 18-year-old cueist from Lahore lost to Asif with frame scores of 113-8, 55-47, 40-80, 60-62, 91-20, 0-95, 81-39, 70-61, 67-79, 69-56 but impressed followers with his skills and nerves of steel he put on show in only his second appearance in a national event. In April, Majid went down to India’s Laxman Rawat 4-3 after a tough battle, crashing out in the pre-quarterfinal of the 13th Asian Snooker Championship. However, that result was enough to convince the Pakistan Billiards and Snooker Association (PBSA) that here was a gem in the making.
The PBSA is now planning on sending Majid and Hunain Amir to the IBSF World U21 Snooker Championship in China that starts on July 14. With that in mind, the young gun is targeting bigger achievements.
“I have the self belief that I can become the world amateur champion,” Majid told The Express Tribune. “There isn’t a big difference between my game and that of world champion Hossein Vafayei Ayouri. The difference lies in the facilities and the training and if I can get the same here, I can beat him.”
The semi-final went down to the wire and Majid could have sealed the result in his favour. However, in the last two frames, the young cueist missed the black with Asif, the country’s top-ranked player, cashing in on the pot.
“I came close to beating him but I’m proud of my performance. The table didn’t respond the way we would’ve liked it to. Asif had experience on his side which proved vital in the nail-biting match.”
Majid added that his exposure in the U21 championship in India helped him topple the senior players in the ranking event, which he will look to clinch the next time. He added that he has requested the PBSA President Alamgir Sheikh to send him abroad for training.
Meanwhile, Majid also drew praise from his opponent with Asif seeing a lot of talent in the youngster, tipping him to emulate the heroics of Mohammad Yousuf , who became the world amateur champion in 1994.
“At 18, there aren’t many players who are so good and can absorb the pressure of big matches,” said Asif. “It was me who was under pressure while he was calm and composed. I was thinking that it’ll be an embarrassment if I lose. He needs good coaching and he can become the world champion soon.”
Asif will face former national junior champion Asjad Iqbal, who prevailed over Shahram Changezi 6-4, in the final.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 29th, 2012.
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