Sunday, November 15, 2009

Ray of Modesty

45TH QubicaAMF Bowling World Cup – Melaka International Bowling Championship (Nov 13th-20th)

Modesty must surely be USA’s pro bowler Walter Ray Williams Jr’s unofficial middle name.

The 50-year Walter Ray Williams Jr who has impressive record 45 PBA titles to his name, been inducted into both the USBC and the PBA Hall of Fame and been the PBA Bowler of the Year an amazing six times, had his feet firmly on the ground for the 45th QubicaAMF Bowling World Cup in Melaka.

Williams Jr after his first practice session at the 52 lane (split-house 26/26) at the Melaka International Bowling Centre when interviewed was very approachable, friendly and above all humble.

He had no airs about himself with all the titles behind him and despite being tagged as favourite for the tournament, quickly dismissed it.

“It is good that people given me that recognition, but there are good bowlers in the competition and anyone can win it,” said the lanky Williams Jr.

When pointed out that as professional bowler with so many titles under his belt, he must surely start as favourites, he said: “Professional is just a word. Many of the amateur bowlers are more professional than the professionals.

“Many of the amateur players are fulltime bowlers and are only amateur in name. Thus there is really not much difference between the pro bowlers and amateurs.”

Asked about the pressure he will be carrying for the tournament, he simply replied: “Everyone is pressured to do well here and I think I carry no more burden than anyone else. As far as I am concerned, I will be playing a tough field and have to be on my best, deliver quality shots, and minimize my mistakes.”

On the bowling centre and the lane conditions, he said: “It is a beautiful centre and the lane conditions were easy. That is no advantage because it means everyone will be scoring high. It will boil down to accuracy and consistency in repeating good shots.

“I was generally happy with my practice and had some good shots. However, I also had some bad shots, so that evens up things.

“I certainly will have to work hard to be rewarded and hope that I do well,” said Williams Jrs who is making his debut in the QubicaAMF Bowling World Cup.

THE AMERICAN TEAM....(from left: Tennelle Milligan, Williams Jr and coach Jeri Edwards

Professionals were allowed to compete in the amateur World Tenpin Bowling Association (WTBA) competitions for the first time last year in the Men’s World Cup championship in Bangkok.

Williams Jrs played in that competition with Team USA and won three gold medals (singles, masters and team) and silver in the trios.

Will Williams Jrs continue his domination in the QubicaAMF Bowling Cup championship?

He is being very modest and not telling. However, no matter what, he starts as favourite.

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