Advani leads the field in pre-quarters of invitational snooker

September 18th, 2008 - 10:30 pm ICT by IANS  

Chennai, Sep 18 (IANS) World champion Pankaj Advani completed his league engagements with a flourish and led the field into the pre-quarter-finals in the Alliance Group-ASCA invitational snooker tournament, here Thursday.Advani posted breaks of 44 in the second and 64 in the third while dismantling local challenger M.C. Manoj 3-0 for his third win in the four-player Group A. Manoj, with two wins and a defeat still made it to the knock-out phase that commences Friday.

Also through to the round of 16 were Manan Chandra and Prem Prakash (Group B), Alok Kumar and Shahbaz Adil Khan (Group D), Rupesh Shah and Faisal Khan (Group E), Geet Sethi (Group G) and Devendra Joshi and Rishab Pandya (Group H).

Sethi put in breaks of 35 and 41 to overturn a 1-2 deficit and win 3-2 against Manish Jain to confirm his progress to the next round.

Earlier, local challenger Antim Singhi posted the tournament’s second century break with a 102, but failed to avoid defeat against Manan Chandra who came through 3-2 in a Group B match.

Chandra jumped to a 2-0 lead, but the match turned on its head in the third frame when the India No.3 missed the final pink which he left in the jaw of the pocket for Singhi to clear the table to make it 1-2.

Singhi, growing in confidence, went for his shots and cashed in on a good opening to compile a 102 with the help of nine blacks, two pinks, four blues and yellow-to-pink clearance to draw level at 2-2.

However, in the decider, Chandra opened with a run of 53 to take the fifth frame and the match.

Late Wednesday night, Devendra Joshi came up with the tournament’s highest break of 131 clearance in winning 3-2 against Neeraj Kumar who had begun well with a 60 break in the first frame but failed to reproduce the form.

Joshi, better known for his billiards, knocked in eight blacks, four pinks, two blues and the colours in the course of his century break.

The results:

Group A: Pankaj Advani bt M.C. Manoj 3-0.
Group B: Manan Chandra bt Antim Singhi 3-2; Manan Chandra bt Pushparaj 3-1.
Group D: Alok Kumar bt R. Loganathan 3-0; Shahbaz Adil Khan bt M.S. Arun 3-0
Group E: Rupesh Shah bt Faisal Khan 3-1.
Group G: Manish Jain bt Vijay Nichani 3-1; Geet Sethi bt Manish Jain 3-2.
Group H: Devendra Joshi bt Neeraj Kumar 3-2; Devendra Joshi bt Rishab Pandya 3-2

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