MASERU – Thakane Letuka successfully defended her title in the Computer Business Solutions (CBS) Women Singles Championship last Sunday.
Letuka, also known as Shima, beat her close friend Mookho ‘Masenke’ Moletsane 3-0 in the best of four race for three final in Maseru.
This was the third time Letuka competed for the CBS title, the first time being in 2017 when she became runner-up before she won last year’s edition.
To qualify for the final, Letuka beat 2017 CBS champion Reitumetse Mona 2-1, also her close buddy.
“The female category is usually not highly competitive but you cannot be very sure about winning until you compete,” Letuka said in a post-match interview with Public Eye on Sunday.
“For example, she (Moletsane) made a few mistakes which I capitalised on to win the final.”
This was the first time Letuka and Moletsane had to play against each other in the CBS tournament, after having met in other competitive pool events before and routinely beat each other.
However, the way Letuka dominated the finals after she last played competitive pool last month in the CBS qualifying round was like a fairy tale.
“In fact, I reached the semi-finals through the back door after I lost my first game in the qualifiers,” she said.
“But luckily I ended up qualifying as there were five of us vying for the top 4 slot and that was the last time I played competitive pool.”
“I utilised the chances I got while exploiting my opponents’ weaknesses in the finals.
“What also helped me was staying calm and disciplined because, to be honest, I had not practised ahead of the finals,” she added.
Letuka said her victory was testimony that pool is in fact a mind game.
“In fact, snooker (as pool as sometimes called) is a mind game because I knew my opponent (in the final)’s weaknesses and strong points as she is my friend. I decided to play the same way she played.
“For example, she played a bit slowly and I did exactly that so that I could match her,” Letuka said.
Meanwhile, Molalana Pool Club were crowned the new champions of the CBS National Tournament in teams’ category after they beat TSS 13-7 in the final.
This was after Molalana won the Maseru First Division title and China Geo Tournament in the previous months, and now won the CBS to make sweep clean.