Eden Sharav and Sachar Ruberg will form the first ever Israel team to take part at the World Cup next month. We caught up with 25-year-old Sharav, as he looks ahead to the trip to Wuxi and to the season ahead…
Eden, how much are you looking forward to representing Israel at the upcoming World Cup?
“It’s something I can’t wait to do. I’ve never played in a team event before so this should be quite a lot of fun. I think it will also be a really great honour to get out there and represent Israel alongside Sachar.
“My dad is Israeli and my mum is Scottish. I lived there until I was three when I moved to Scotland. I can’t remember too much of the country as I was so young when we left. Although, I did travel back there on holiday when I was 15. I actually plan on visiting some family I have there in a few months’ time which I am looking forward to.
“Although I’m not used to playing in a team when I am on tour, I think you just need to treat it in the same way as you would any other tournament. I have a responsibility to my teammate, but in reality we just need to go and enjoy it and see how far we can get.”
There was a lot of pressure on you at the end of last season to maintain your tour card. You went on a strong run to the last 32 of the China Open in Beijing and had to win your opening World Championship Qualifying match at Ponds Forge. How relieved were you to get over the line?
“It was massive to go on the run I did in China. I absolutely love travelling there and I love playing there. It is great to be able to get that sort of experience. I got some good wins to reach the last 32, but unfortunately I lost out to Judd Trump who was playing extremely well. I didn’t feel great during the game as I’m not that used to playing under TV conditions. It’s my aim this season to get more TV experience and hopefully I will fare better next time.
“Even after that run in Beijing I still needed to beat Jamie Cope in the first round at Ponds Forge to keep my card. There was a lot of pressure on me, but I managed to put that all to one side and focus on the game. In the end I won 10-5 and it was such a relief to have stayed on the tour. I’d have to say that was probably the biggest win of my career, considering what was riding on it.”
Sharav at the CBSA Academy
During your trip to Beijing for the China Open you visited the CBSA Academy and helped with coaching some of the younger players. Tell us a bit about the experience.
“It was something that I really enjoyed. To see the facilities and how many young and talented players are coming through is quite an eye opener. The quality of the facilities as a whole shows you how massive the sport is becoming in China. I think that sort of place is the kind of thing we need to be aspiring to in Britain now.”
You’ve also done quite a bit of coaching in Scotland. You are only in the early stages of your playing career, but is snooker coaching something you think you would like to get more involved in down the line?
“Yes definitely. I find coaching interesting. I help out along with Anthony McGill to put on coaching sessions every fortnight at Minnesota Fats, which is a club near where I live. Having seen first hand what can be done when I was in China I would like to help bring on the next generation over here.”