Pakistan’s ace cuemen Muhammad Sajjad is eyeing to regain his top slot in the national ranking chart by winning the Del Monte Snooker Cup Ranking Snooker Championship which will break-off at Amir Bakhsh Billiards Hall of Karachi Club from Tuesday.
Asian number two Sajjad, who lost to his pupil and top seed Asjad Iqbal in NBP Cup final in Islamabad earlier this year, said this is very important event for him.
“I must win this event to gain top slot in the national ranking to assure my participation for December’s world championship in Damascus,” he told APP on the eve of the competition.
“Asjad is really working hard and proving his metal. Losing to him was no disappointment because he is emerging fast,” the reigning national champion added.
“This is the toughest event of the country as top 16 cueists from across the country are featuring. However I am physically and mentally ready for the task,” he commented.
24-year-old from Sargodha Sajjad said Muhammad Asif, Sohail Shehzad and Shahram Changezi ares his toughest opponents.
This event will serve as the qualifier for the world championship. On the basis of national ranking chart top two cueists will represent the country in World Snooker Championship being staged in Damascus (Syria) in December.
Rs 10,5000 prize money will be at the offer with winner taking Rs 50,000 and runner-up Rs 30,000 and losing semifinalist will get Rs 10,000.
Top seed Asjad of Punjab will clash Rambail Gul of Khyber Patkhtunkhwa (KP) in the opening match at 10.00 a.m. while Sajjad will be up against Nauman Awan also of KP at 12.00 noon.
Players are drawn in two groups and two top cueists from each group will qualify for the semifinal rounds which will be played on October 2 while the final will be contested on October 3.
This will be good build-up for the players before the Asian Games where a 5-member squad will represent the country in snooker singles and doubles and team contest.
Following are grouping:
Group “A” Asjad Iqbal (Punjab), Imran Shehzad (Punjab), Sohail Shehzad (Sindh), Muhammad Asif (Punjab), Omair Alam (Sindh), Qasim Kamani (Sindh), Abdul Sattar (Sindh), Rambail Gul (KP).
Group “B” Muhammad Sajjad (Punjab), Muhammad Asif Toba (Punjab),Imran Qamar (Punjab), Muhammad Jawed (Punjab), Sharjeel Mahmood (KP), Sultan Muhammad (Sindh), Shahram Changezi (Punjab), Nauman Awan (KP).