Age has caught up with me: Sethi
New Delhi: Eight-time world billiards champion Geet Sethi on Wednesday conceded that advancing age has caught up with him as he is experiencing weakening of his mental and physical strength resulting in poor performance in the last few seasons.
"You have to accept that as one grows older, there comes certain slowness in his pace. I am 49 and my mental edge has slightly gone down. Full concentration, full energy has got somewhere diluted as I grew older," 49-year-old Sethi told PTI on the sidelines of a school tournament.
”It`s a process and I am aware of it. My performances in recent times have gone down. Yes my performance has dropped. I am aware of it and it`s upto me how to reset my game," Sethi said.
Ahmadabad-based Sethi has not won any international tournament since 2008 following his English Billiards Open Series success at Prestatyn in North Wales.
He lost to countryman Pankaj Advani in the quarterfinals of Asian Championship in Indore in April this year, lost in the semifinals of Australian Open Billiards Championship this month and even failed to reach quarterfinal of World Professional Billiards Championship in Leeds in September last year.
Asked whether he needs to readjust his playing technique given the current crop of aggressive young players, Sethi said, "There is nothing wrong with my technique and I just need to introspect within and need to refocus on my game."
"This game is not about aggression. This sport is not about aggression, but about concentration, calmness and introspection. So it`s not the aggression that I need, I need it from the opposite player. To adjust to it, that`s upto me," he said.
But, Sethi, looking dapper in white shirt and pair of blue denim, said that there are tournaments like Asian Games, which motivates him to produce remaining best out of him.
"There are times where I get remotivated. Asian games is one such tournament that remotivates me. Asian Games somehow manages to get best out of me. It`s like seclusion from other things of my life during that period. Only devoted to it," he said.
"I play one-two hours every day. As I play solo, playing alone means giving three-four hours daily. For last 15 years, that`s what I have done. My preparation both on and off the table is going good," he said.
On his future plans like opening a cuesport academy on the lines of Badminton greats Prakash Padukone or Pulella Gopichand, Sethi said, "I will always contribute in whichever way administration asks me to do. I don`t know about full time coaching or opening own academy but I will be always available for the betterment of the game."
"As far as I know, BSFI is setting up a very large academy in Hyderabad," he said.