ST. PAUL’S BAY – Two-time national snooker champion Tiago Silva (AD Sanjoanense InLine) bid farewell this Wednesday to the European Snooker Championship, which takes place from the 6th of this month to the 19th in Malta, with a defeat – the fourth in as many other competitions – in the “Iberian derby”, against the Spaniard Juan Pedro Duran, in a meeting of the 4th and final round of Group W of the competition, which brings together 117 players, divided into 36 groups in the first phase, for “unsportsmanlike conduct”, the referee considered match, the Bulgarian Aleksandra Shtraklin.
With no chance of challenging for the top two spots in the group – and qualification for the knockout stages, with 72 players (105 eliminated), Silva’s previous three defeats have come against Poland’s Maciej Kusak (2-3), Bulgarian Viktor Iliev. (0-3) and the Englishman Patrick Whelan (0-3) and the Bulgarian Viktor Iliev (0-3).
Silva’s meeting with the Galician Duran started quite slowly. And with Juan Pedro unwittingly putting yellow, brown and pink in the last row of colors when he tries a snooker and foul from Thiago Silva – the points available on the table were no longer enough for the Spaniard to win – the Portuguese won the first half: 1-0.
At the end of that opening ‘frame’, Thiago’s bat slipped and there was a resounding crash after receiving a reprimand from the umpire. In the second half, the two-time Panhellenic champion (2021 and 2022), losing 16-49, conceded the “frame”, putting the bat on the table and moving a red ball with her hand.
The Portuguese player headed to the WC, just as Duran had done at the end of the first half, having asked the referee for permission… which Thiago admitted he was wrong to do. On the way, he spoke to the federation official Óscar Pereira about his return trip and received an official “caution” (warning) from Shtraklin that he would miss the game next time. Which ended up happening, to the detriment of Thiago and Portugal’s sins.
“The referee was strict with me, at the first warning: the stick slipped, that’s all. My opponent went to the toilet, he had details of the trip back to Portugal to settle, again I had ‘zero tolerance’. When I came back from the WC, after conceding the second ‘frame’, I caught a red ball, I already did the tally and it was game over. I’m sorry, I didn’t want any of this and this strictness is strange. I just wanted to play, gain experience and knowledge. And in fact it was a great game”, Thiago Silva told us, who said goodbye to St. Paul’s Bay.
As for Miguel Ruivo, in the early hours of this Wednesday he also failed to avoid a third defeat, against another Spaniard: Aleix Melia (1-3), a game in which the 18-year-old from Ericeira Snooker Club still managed to save the third “frame” in fancy pink, so for 1-2… but that’s where the chances ended (individual 15-60, 10-77, 56-45 and 30-53) of the Portuguese in Group A, in one game directed by Northern Irish referee Seamus Gallagher.
After losses to Scotland’s Ross Muir (0-3) and Armenia’s Arman Petrosian (1-3), the loss to Melia left Ruivo out of contention for second place and a place in the knockout stages: he retired from the game . in the 4th round, against Maltese Duncan Bezina.
“The overall balance must be positive. I saw and faced different and very good players, from another league compared to what we are used to seeing in Portugal. I feel my game is developing, it’s all part of the learning and development process,” Miguel Ruivo told A BOLA, still unhappy with a less than successful move here and there.
“I could have won, at least, a few more ‘frames’,” concluded the only player from Portugal who took part in the 96-man Under-21 competition in a European Championship that in all four categories – absolute European, under of 16, under 18 and under 21 years – 412 players and 41 referees from a total of 41 of the 54 countries of the European continent are participating.