by Ben Hudd • March 31, 2023
Francisco Sanchez Ruiz and David Alcaide landed Spain’s maiden World Cup of Pool accolade last year and the pair have admitted that defending their title on home soil will provide an added incentive.
The Spanish sensations, both of who are multiple-time major champions under the nineball umbrella, defeated Aloysius Yapp and Toh Lian Han of Singapore last June to become world champions.
Matchroom recently revealed that their reward for reigning victorious in the unique doubles tournament will be a defence in front of a Spanish crowd in Lugo from June 27 until July 2, following the inaugural staging of the Spanish Open Pool Championship.
“Defending any title is always special, but in Spain we will try even more to make it happen. I am super excited about the possibility of such a feat,” said two-time World Pool Masters champion Alcaide.
“Since we’ve known each other we’ve always dreamed of this title – it was a dream when it happened and now we are living out another one. It will be an extra motivation and I hope that for our rivals, the Spanish public will make them feel that pressure.”
Alcaide and Sanchez Ruiz have worn Spanish colours each year since 2017, having originally partnered one another thirteen years ago, but Sanchez Ruiz’s remarkable rise in recent years has turned them into a considerable force.
“It’s amazing because last year I said to David that this was the one we wanted to win. It meant so much to us both,” current world number one Sanchez Ruiz added, having won both the World Championship and the US Open in seven months.
“It will be special. The Spanish fans will be unbelievable, we have a lot of knowledgeable fans. I think it will be the best World Cup of Pool ever. It will be tough – we have all the pressure and everyone expects us to win it but I will not think of that. We will think round by round. It’s rare to defend this title.”
In addition, Premier League champion Sanchez Ruiz provided his thoughts on the introduction of the Spanish Open and believes his country’s enthusiasm for pool will come to the fore this summer.
“I think I speak for all Spanish players when I say it’s something special to have the biggest events being brought to our country with our people supporting us,” he expressed. “It would be a unique experience for me. I won my first Spanish championship in Lugo so it is a special place for me already.
“It’s going to be a tournament that’s hard to forget for all the players. In Spain, there is a lot of fans and a lot of passion for pool in the country and I am sure they will turn out to support us all.”