September 15, 2011

NJI to sponsor first-ever 6-Reds Snooker in December


Syed Khalid Mahmood

New Jubilee Insurance (NJI), the major sponsors of cue sports in the country, will also support the Pakistan Billiards & Snooker Association (PBSA) in holding the first-ever 6-Reds National Snooker Tournament later this year.

Alamgir Anwar Shaikh, President, PBSA, has announced that the inaugural 6-Reds National Tournament, to be sponsored by NJI, will be held in December.

“We had been working on this for quite sometime and finally it has been decided to launch the event this year. The growing popularity of 6-Reds version of the game has prompted this move as we desire to have our cueists well versed with this format as well,” the PBSA President remarked.

“We are in the process of finalizing the number of participants for the inaugural tourney. We are yet to decide whether to limit to the participation to the top eight of the country or let the top 16 contest it in view of providing exposure to a larger pool of cueists,” Alamgir Shaikh added.

The PBSA President reckoned that the 6-Reds format designed to revive the popularity of snooker as a spectator sport, in the same way Twenty20 has done to cricket was here to stay.

He acknowledged the support of the sponsors over the years, having helped enormously in taking snooker to its present level in Pakistan.

NJI has emerged as the lead sponsors of the Pakistan snooker after the withdrawal of Lakson Tobacco Company, whose brand Red & White remained famously associated with snooker for over a decade.

The 6-Reds snooker has gained immense popularity over a short period of time and this television friendly format is likely to stay here for a long time. The PBSA has acted in the right direction by introducing it at the national level and there are possibilities of taking to the provinces as well.

The six-red snooker, also called six-reds, 6-red, and super 6s, is a cue sport based on snooker but with only six red balls on the table as opposed to the standard fifteen. All other rules are unchanged and the table is also of the same size as in the traditional 15-red game. The format was designed to feature shorter frames, due to fewer red balls.

The first international tournament in this format was contested in July 2008. A six-red tournament was held during the 2009 World Snooker Championship as a sideshow, involving one-frame knockout matches. The first 6-Reds World Championship was held in Ireland in December 2009.

Meanwhile, the first-ever edition of 6-Reds Snooker Men’s State Ranking Tournament in India, was organized by the Karnataka State Billiards Association (KSBA) in Bangalore last month.

A total of 97 entries were received and the matches were played on a knockout basis to decide the top 16, who then formed four leagues to compete for quarter finals.

The top two cueists were selected represent the state in the forthcoming 6-Red Snooker Nationals to be staged in Chandigarh from September 17 to 25.


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