Master of Ceremonies Steve Canniford opened the evening with the following introduction:-
Geet Sethi’s achievements are right up there with the best in the world. In a remarkable career spanning over 30 years, Geet has become synonymous with the three-ball game in India. Born in Delhi in 1961, Geet’s precocious talent blossomed when he shifted to Ahmedabad at a young age. Geet startled billiards experts when he defeated Michael Ferreira to win the National senior title in 1982. Carrying on the good work, he won the IBSF World Billiards Championship in 1985 by defeating Bob Marshall in a marathon 8-hour long final. He went on to win an amazing eight world titles – five World Professional and three IBSF World Billiards Championships. Besides winning crowns aplenty, Geet has achieved many a record-breaking feats. He featured in the Guinness Book of World Records for being the first amateur in the world to compile the maximum 147 break in Snooker. Moreover, Geet constructed a break of 1276 in the 1992 World Professional Billiards Championship, which, until recent years, was a World Record under the three pot rule and remained unbeaten for 15 years. Geet was Michael Ferreira’s heir-apparent and his classic encounters with arch rival Mike Russell are the stuff legends are made of.
In a tribute to his achievements, his nation has conferred on him some of its most prestigious awards; Padma Shri (1986) (MBE equivalent), Arjuna Award (1986) & Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award (1992-93) (two of the highest awards that can be bestowed on a sportsman in India). In spite of his legendary stature in the game, Geet remains unassuming and strives hard to reach new pinnacles in the game and has become a role model for the youth of his country of origin. He is also author of Success vs Joy, an inspirational book on Mind Control.
Geet Sethi arrived in Plymouth barely an hour before the exhibition was to start, some 3 hours later than planned as a result of a delayed train journey from London. After a quick freshen-up Sethi was taken to the venue where he immediately engaged with those around him in interesting conversation before commencing 2 hours of English Billiards against opposition from the region. Well known local Derek Walker was his first opponent on the green baize. Walker started well with a tidy break of 28 at his first visit to the table, Sethi was soon to respond with a respectable 61 break. After a just few more visits from both players Sethi fashioned breaks of 52 and 110 to lead 238-59 at the 30 minute stage. Next up was the talented Snooker player Matt Williams. Williams, who is not adverse to making century breaks at both snooker and billiards took the challengers points score up to the 100 mark but Sethi, still not yet in full flow, made beaks of 65,75 & 66 to lead 451-100 at the halfway stage. One of the best billiards players in the region came to the table as Sethi’s next challenger, Steve Brookshaw, who is capable of breaks up to 200 when playing at his very best. Brookshaw fond Sethi starting to read the table and warm to the task at hand. Brookshaw was to add just 45 points to the challengers total in his 30 minute stint due to Sethi occupying the table with breaks of 65 and a superb 267 taking his average to over 49 points per visit and a lead of 840-145. Sethi’s final opponent was one of Cornwall finest, English International Chris Mitchell. Mitchell made a 68 break and scored 134 points but it was Sethi that was to average under 4 minutes per 100 points fashioning breaks of 139 and a magnificent 300 unfinished, leaving the balls in perfect floating white position at the ‘top of the table’. If Sethi was left to continue who knows what the final tally would have been. At this point Canniford brought the billiards session to an end for a well earned rest. During this 20 minute ‘rest’ period Sethi mingled with onlookers signing autographs and posing for photographs. Sethi returned to play two frames of snooker against local Bronze Waistcoat players, Haydon Pinhey and Chris Coumbe. Both youngsters showing glimpses of their potential against the master cueman. Sethi winning 2-0 with a breaks of 65. Sethi completed the evening with a couple of very amusing stories from his many travels around the globe and an excellent trick shot before mingling with onlookers into the late hours.
Thanks to the Victoria Snooker Centre, Plymouth for hosting the exhibition
Report by Steve Canniford
|Results & Statistics|
|Geet Sethi||238||61,52,110||(39.67)||V||Derek Walker||59||(11.8)|
|Geet Sethi||213||65,75,66||(37.6)||V||Matt Williams||41||(6.8)|
|Geet Sethi||389||65,267||(49.4)||V||Steve Brookshaw||45||(11.25)|
|Geet Sethi||457||139,300||(54.04)||V||Chris Mitchell||134||32,68||(19.1)|