FOR QatarI players, it was a familiar story of not being able to deliver when it mattered the most.
Qatar had fielded six cueists in the main draw of 64 for the 33rd Asian Snooker Championships. But only two — Ahmed Saif and Ali Al Obaidly — made it to the Round of 32, where their challenge ended.
Ahmed, the country’s only player to turn up on the World Tour, lost to the UAE’s Mohamed Shehab 1-4 while Ali fared slightly better, winning two frames, before going down to Hong Kong’s Ka Wai Cheung 2-4.
Four years ago, it was all hunky-dory for Ahmed, who made history by becoming the first snooker player from Qatar to turn professional. But it has been a steep fall from grace for the 33-year-old, who had to drop out of the World Tour at the end of 2015 due to unimpressive results.
And though Ahmed has been trying hard to get his Tour Card back, a string of bad results like the one at home last week is derailing his plans.
“On the Tour, I lost many matches mainly because of inexperience. I lost many frames which I should’ve won easily normally. The Tour experience was invaluable. I’m trying to put that to good use, but it looks as though luck isn’t with me at the moment,” rued Ahmed.
The same goes with Ali, who was once touted as the next big thing in Qatar snooker when he won the Arab title in 2011. But he has failed to build on that and the defeat to Ka last week was another case in point.