Billiards

Women’s pool vet Rubilen Amit sees teenage sensation Chezka Centeno as her successor: ‘She’s a champion person’

Chezka Centeno. InterAksyon.com/Rey Joble

Chezka Centeno. InterAksyon.com/Rey Joble

SINGAPORE — An all-Filipino finals just like the way she wanted it.

For multi-awarded SEA Games campaigner and two-time world champion Rubilen Amit, a battle for the women’s nine-ball singles gold medal with her likely heir apparent Chezka Centeno is a treat for Filipino fans.

She admitted that she had hoped for the matchup when she advanced to the semifinals and realized that Centeno was on the other side of the bracket.

“Kailangang manalo, at least now, natupad yung gusto ko all-Filipino finals,” Amit told a small group of sportswriters after her 7-2 win over Myanmar’s Aung Aye Mi in the semifinals.

That win forged a clash for gold medal with Centeno who scored a comeback 7-5 win over Siraphat Chimchomnart of Thailand.

In the finals, Amit, 33, will be facing a 16-year-old sensation in Centeno whom she considers to be her heir apparent — Centeno pulled off an upset against the veteran campaigner in last year’s Philippine National Games.

Amit believes that Centeno can surpass her.

“More than her skills, she’s a champion person,” added Amit. “I believe she will achieve even more than what I achieved. Mabait na bata yan and masipag. Natutuwa ako sa kanya kasi matapang.”

“If ever man magkakaroon ako ng successor, gusto ko siya na,” added Amit.

Not satisfied

Amit, who won the World Women’s 10-Ball Championship two times, had a slow start against her less-heralded Burmese foe. She could only get her game going off miscues from her opponent who missed several easy shots.

“Honestly, yung kalaban ko (in the earlier rounds) may mas matibay pa sa kanya kaso siya yung lumusot,” added Amit.

Despite the convincing scoreline, Amit said she wasn’t able to play her best game.

“Parang hindi nga ako satisfied sa laro ko kasi. Parang kulang sa gana yung laro ko, inilaro ko yung klaseng ng laro niya,” added Amit.

But Amit will surely bring her A-game come finals as she is on the verge of winning her seventh gold medal in the SEA Games — the most by any Filipina cue player.

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