Rubilen Amit and Carlo Biado, two of the world’s best pool/billiard players, will lead the Filipino cue artists’ gold rush in the coming Southeast Asian Games.
A two-time World Women’s 10-Ball Champion, Amit is looking to increase her gold medal collection in the biennial meet. She has won six gold medals since she started campaigning in the 2005 SEA Games in Manila.
Ranked No.3 in the world based on the latest ranking of the WPA (World Pool-Billiard Association), Amit has gone full circle and she will be competing in her favorite discipline 9-Ball, an event she had dominated three times in the past SEA Games.
But over the past two SEA Games, Amit had paved the way to the youthful, equally talented Chezka Centeno, who had proven that it’s now the passing of torch when it comes to women’s billiards in the biennial meet.
Although she has not been included among the top 10 players in the world as she’s been competing less in WPA tours than Amit, Centeno had won the last two SEA Games gold medals, both of which at the expense of the 38-year-old Filipina cue artist.
For Biado, it’s another opportunity to make the country proud.
He won the gold medal in the last edition of the Games in Malaysia. In the 2015 SEA Games, he teamed up with Warren Kiamco in capturing the 9-Ball doubles event.
Ranked fourth in the world, Biado came close to becoming a world champion when he made it all the way to the finals of the World Ten Ball Championship, but lost to Ko Pin-yi of Taiwan four years ago.
But in 2017, Biado finally came out of his shell and became a world champion, winning the 9-Ball event.
Also included in the Philippine pool/billiards team are former world champions Efren “Bata” Reyes and Dennis Orcullo, Johann Chua and Jeffrey Ignacio.
Now 65 years old, Reyes, the living legend of Pinoy pool/billiards, will be playing his final event representing the Philippines in a major international competition.
A two-time world champion, Reyes will be competing in the 3-cushion carom men’s single.
Orcullo is also a former World 8-Ball champion and has won five gold medals in the SEA Games.
Photos from Carlo Biado’s Facebook/Rey Joble