By AYYAZ MALIK
One of snooker’s biggest showpieces, the UK Championship which kicked off on 24th November and finishes on 6th December this year includes many players from Asia (the far east) and South Asia.
Players such as Marco Fu from Hong Kong, Liang Wenbo of China and Thecipaya Un-Nooh from Thailand are in this UK Championships. As impressive as that is as far as helping to progress the game in the Far East goes, more encouragingly two players of South Asian descent were also in this year’s UK Championship.
Indian player Aditya Mehta from Dehli who is the Indian number one and British born Bengali player Hamid Miah who is from Hertfordshire were in this year’s Championships to add some much-needed diversity to snooker’s tournaments.
In the case of both players, both have had relative success by progressing into the latter stages of the Indian Open in 2013. Mehta was a beaten finalist on home soil after losing to Chinse player Ding Jung while Miah lost in the round of 32 to the Delhi player.
Both players in the first round needed to come through tough assignments. Miah was up against former world number two Judd Trump and Mehta had the unenviable task of trying to beat Aussie Neil Robertson.
Sadly for both players, both suffered heavy defeats at the hands of their more experienced rivals. British Bengali player Miah was beaten 6-1 by Trump and was beaten Mehta 6-2 by Robertson.
The defeat for Mehta would have been more difficult for his fans as the Delhi player did have chances, but ultimately the class of Robertson told as the 30-year old went through to the next round.
It wasn’t what either player wanted on the table (to lose in the first round), but off the table many will be hoping this will lead to more Asian’s participating in the game of snooker as both players exceeded some people’s expectations on getting this far.