| Fadhil Yunus |
HAJI Md Haikal Qarin bin Haji Haironi Hamizin’s meteoric rise in the national snooker scene as the youngest winner of the Pro X National Snooker Championship 2019 came two years after he landed his first major breakthrough in pool.
The fresh-faced teenager, then aged 14, sent shockwaves among the local billiards community when he claimed the 1st Zain 9-Ball Pool Open Championship in 2017 after a 9-2 victory over Pengiran Husairi bin Pengiran Haji Metusain in the final.
Two years later, he captured a big snooker prize having outlasted one of the most competitive fields with the top eight containing four champions in snooker.
Just days before his 15th birthday, Haji Md Haikal Qarin made his mark in the regional scene after reaching the semi-finals of the 8th Golden Break 9-Ball Championship 2017 Stage 1 qualifiers at the Golden Break Kuchai Avenue in Kuala Lumpur.
Having impressed in the local scene, the young talent defeated Singapore’s Darren Young in the last 16 and Indonesia’s Ahuat before falling to Hong Kong’s Ip Tung Pong in the last four.
Last year, he added another trophy to his pool cabinet with victory in the HH 9-Ball Tournament at the Master Alim Pool Café after he defeated Md Khalid bin Abu Bakar 7-4 in the final.
After gaining a reputation in the pool scene, the youngster quickly made an immediate impact in the snooker discipline where he reached the semi-finals of the Brunei National 6 Reds Snooker Championships, a competition at national level, last year.
His performances in both the 6 and 15 reds event catapulted him as the fifth ranked player in the country in snooker.
The victory was the more impressive as Haji Md Haikal Qarin was also the only player below the age of 20 who joined the Pro X National Snooker Championship.
The Pro X National Snooker Championship is the first event in the Brunei Darussalam Cue Sports Association (BCSA) calendar.