Young snooker player upsets China's top player twice
Zhejiang's top snooker player Si Jiahui lines up a shot. [Photo/zjol.com.cn]
At the first round of the World Snooker Gibraltar Open in March, 18-year-old Shaoxing snooker player Si Jiahui upset China's top snooker player Ding Junhui 4-2.
It was not the first time for the promising star to shock snooker fans. In 2016, Si, who was then only 13-year-old, bested Ding in the first round of the China Snooker Fuzhou Open. Three years later, he entered the World Snooker Tour in England, becoming the sport's top player from Zhejiang province.
Si was born in Bihu county, Zhuji, a county-level city in Shaoxing. He showed outstanding sports talent at a very young age. "He was the second best ping-pong player in his primary school and was selected to compete in a municipal contest of Hangzhou," said his father Si Peijun, who ran a billiards room.
In fourth grade, Si was already obsessed with billiards and would watch people play after school. One day, there was one table available and his father asked Si to try the game. In his first game, he beat a regular customer.
Three months later, the fourth-grade student was acknowledged as the top player of the billiards room. Si then joined a training camp to learn basic skills and won a runner-up title at a youth snooker open in Shanghai.
Young, but determined, Si persuaded his parents to allow him to drop out of school in 2013, and came to Guangzhou for his snooker training. "My idol is Ronnie O'Sullivan. I trained 10 hours a day in Guangzhou as I dreamed of lining up shots at the Snooker World Championship like him," he said.
In June 2019, Si passed the qualifications in England and officially began his snooker career in a different country.
Si is trying to rise from his ranking as 88th to make the world's top 64 rankings. Otherwise, he will have to play qualifications once again.
"My career has just begun. Step by step, I will realize my dream," Si told a local media outlet in Shaoxing in April. He also encouraged other young people in Zhejiang be brave and dare to chase their dreams.