Some of my irredeemably English kayaking mates insist on calling it "Blick".
I think those friends of yours must have met an acqauintance of ours.
A bit more than a year ago, Andy and I went on a trip to Iceland, and one of the places we went to see was Žingvellir. The correct Icelandic pronunciation of that is approximately "THINK-vet-lear".
This acquaintance has also been there; she went to Iceland on a group trip with Andy's late mother, which is in fact how we know her at all. But despite having been there and having heard Icelanders pronounce its name, she insists on calling it "PING-vella".
I was just thinking that I probably shouldn't cast aspersions given that I worked on the Guangzhou metro for several months (albeit not actually in China) and was still unsure by the end which of the many pronunciation variants I'd heard was the most correct approximation.
I've just been studying the IPA on Wikipedia and I at least understand why all the variants now. Wiki's preferred Anglicisation approximates the Mandarin while I see that the pronunciation my friend from SOAS gave me is (probably more appropriately) Anglicised Cantonese, minus the tones in each case, of course. The mangling that our team most commonly managed is somewhat removed from either of these, though.