CSWC Asia DEVELOPMENT
The Cigar Smoking World Championship has gained a foothold in Asia, with Malaysia being the epicentre of recent qualification action.
First ever CSWC qualification in Asia - CSWC Bangkok, Thailand
The Cigar Smoking World Championship turned its attention to Asia for the first time in 2017 with Whisgars Silom Road hosting the region’s first ever qualifying event in Bangkok, Thailand. Cliff Robbins won the qualifying round with a time of 01:22:22. Whisgars also launched Jeremy Casdagli’s cigar brand at the event. 2018 saw CSWC events held in Bangkok, Thailand and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. In Bangkok Swedish Expat Mikael Petersson won with a time of 1:54:37. In Ho Chi Minh City, Ms Luong Phan claimed victory at the Saigon Cigar Club with a time of 1:30:23, while a delegation of three Russian competitors from the Russian Cigar Club also took part. Ivan Munteanu’s time of 1:32:32 was the best of the visitors.
All official activities of Polish smokers are thus closely monitored. There are high expectations for the results, which they are working hard to meet. They are one of my favorite slow smokers, one of the most fair play competitors, and they have the best female slow smokers in the world - Marko Bilic, CSWC Founder
Samuel Spurr and Marko Bilic in Whisgars, Bangkok
CSWC Judge for Malaysia - Andreas Vogiatzakis
In 2019, Whisgars in Bangkok once again hosted a qualification tournament, with that year’s Vietnam qualifier hosted in Hanoi by Timen Swijnik, co-founder of The Saigon Cigar Club, at the Whisky Library at The Els Performance Golf Academy. In Bangkok, Swedish Expat Mikael Petersson went back to back, with a winning time of 1:47:20. In Hanoi, Nguyen Trong Dat recorded a winning time of 1:38:30 to claim the qualification round. Also in In 2019, Marko Bilic made the trip to Malaysia for the first time for the CSWC’s debut in Kuala Lumpur at the Astor Bar, St Regis Hotel to host with event partners Trinidad Cigar Co (Malaysia). Travelling to Kuala Lumpur from Jakarta, Indonesia just for the event, Mr Yadie Dayana won the inaugural CSWC Kuala Lumpur qualifying competition with a time of 1 hour, 40 minutes, 46 seconds.
First Champion of Malaysia
David Lee, CSWC Champion 2020
Ferdinand Moc, Judge & CSWC Ambassador Asia
In 2020, while the CSWC Stray Strong online season operated due to Covid-19, Kuala Lumpur held one of only a few live qualification events. Hosted by Trinidad Cigar Company (Malaysia) and held at Chime in the Sheraton Hotel Petaling Jaya, the event welcomed 18 competitors who battled through the competition in front of 20 spectators. A trio of friends, Wilson Lim, David Lee, and Tieng Ang eventually placed first, second, and third on the night. Wilson Lim won the event with a time 1:41:13.
This year, Trinidad Cigar Company once again WILL host Kuala Lumpur’s third qualification event at Chime on 16th of September. Unfortunately, a 3rd wave of Covid has the event on hold until the late date, just a day before Grand Final. Winner of CSWC Malaysia will participate via Zoom link on the Grand Final battle and that is exception done by CSWC organisation. He will be monitored by Andreas Vogiatzakis, the official CSWC Judge. With 2020 runner-up David Lee now living and working in Europe, Wilson Lim has a title to defend against up-and-coming competitors.
Local judges Ferdinand Piet (Singapore), Andreas Vogiatzakis ( Malaysia), Richard Valentine (Thailand) and Samuel Spurr (Malaysia, now Australia) will seek to host and develop more qualification events in the Asia-Pacific region in 2022.
Unforgettable times from CSWC Vietnam