World Amateurs: Sniper’s Diary 1

The World Amateur Championship got under way in Sofia on Saturday with five Irishmen over competing for top honours – three in the Men’s event and two in the Masters.

Regular SnookerHQ contributor Johnny ‘Sniper’ Williams is competing in the Men’s and has had a mixed bag of results so far from his opening two games.

Over the next week he’ll be keeping us all informed with how the tournament is going with his own take on proceedings…

“Okay, updates so far from Bulgaria. My first game on Saturday was a very nervy occasion for me. I had underestimated my opponent Ajeya Prabhakar and thought, as he was American and the game has yet to take off over there, that he wouldn’t be the best potter and I could mess around a little.”

“My attitude quickly turned around when he was knocking in long pots from everywhere so I started to play more safety and not go for crazy shots. We both struggled with the lightening speed of the tables. My highest break was only 32 and I struggled with nerves a little as the event got to me, but I eventually came out a 4-1 winner but, to be honest, the scoreline was somewhat flattering.

“My second game today was a lot better against former pro Jin Long. I was well behind in the first frame after he had a nice 53 break and I needed a snooker at one stage but got it and made a nice 35 clearance to win on the black. In the next frame I got in and had a nice 75 break to go 2-0 up.

“The nerves got the better of me for two frames after that and I missed a few easy balls. At 2-2 he started to play a lot better and started to score more, I didn’t have many clear cut chances and when he got in he punished me to complete a 4-2 win. My next game is tomorrow (Monday) at 10am Irish time against last year’s semi-finalist, Kamal Chawla. I need to win one more match out of my last two games to qualify from my group.

“As for the other lads, Brendan O’Donoghue has won both his first matches 4-1 and 4-0 and he is scoring well. Greg Casey won his first match and lost his second match against a very good player in Belgian Peter Bullen. Greg had a very good 93 break in his first match, though, and seems to be hitting the ball nicely.

“In the Masters, Mark Tuite played his first game today. I watched every shot and he went 2-0 up in no time but then missed a few easy balls and let his opponent back into the match. Eventually it went 2-2 and to the final black which Mark potted but was very unfortunate to pot the white also. He lost 3-2 in a game he feels he should have won. He’s playing well and will bounce back. 

“Finally, Brendan Cooney has won his first game 3-0 playing very solid snooker. They both play again tomorrow.”

Good luck to all the lads for the rest of the event and we look forward to hearing more from the ‘Sniper’ later on in the week.

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