By Jerome Lagunzad
Reigning world 9-ball king Carlo Biado aims to add another precious silverware to his trophy cabinet as he teams up with Jeffrey De Luna in the World Cup of Pool that gets going on Tuesday in Shanghai, China.
Biado, 34, is hoping that third time will be a charm as he sets out for another title hunt in the most prestigious world 9-ball doubles tournament where the Philippines remains as the winningest country after topping three of the first 11 editions.
“Siyempre isa rin ‘to sa mga pangarap ko. Makuha ang world titles sa 9-ball doubles. Baka si Jeff ang maging swerte ko ngayon,” said Biado in a phone interview yesterday on the eve of their flight to the bustling Chinese city.
“Swertihan lang rin kasi talaga minsan. ‘Yung mga makakalaban naman namin dun magagaling rin talaga. Kaya hindi kami pwedeng magkumpiyansa. Kaya dapat maganda ang preparasyon namin para sa tournament na ‘to.”
Biado initially tried his luck in the 2015 edition back in London where he finished in the Round of 16 with veteran Warren Kiamco. Two years later, Biado made it to the next level by advancing to the quarterfinals alongside Johann Chua.
The legendary duo of Efren “Bata” Reyes and Django Bustamante ruled the tourney twice, the inaugural edition back in 2006 in Wales and the 2009 tilt in Manila. The equally formidable tandem of Dennis Orcollo and Lee Van Corteza topped the 2013 staging in London, England.
Biado has high hopes that his latest team-up with De Luna, 33, ranked 16th in the world, can help them sustain the country’s winning tradition starting against their opening day rival New Zealand on May 16.
“For two to three weeks, naging maganda ang ensayo namin. Kahit may iba kaming commitments, at least nakakapag-ensayo pa rin kami ng magkasama. Mas okay na ‘yun kaysa walang practice talaga. Confident naman ako na magiging maganda ang performance namin,” said the La Union native.