Bengaluru: Ace Indian cueist Pankaj Advani stormed into the semi-finals of the 150-Up format of the IBSF World Billiards Championship in Bengaluru on Sunday.
Ten-time world champion Advani beat compatriot Dhruv Sitwala 5–2 [150 (150)-00, 152 (152)-00, 151-05, 89-150, 107-151 (151), 151 (123)-69, 150 (96)-128] in the quarter-finals.
Multiple-time world champion Peter Gilchrist also made it to the semi-finals by defeating Indian national champion Sourav Kothari five games to two in best of nine games.
Gilchrist will play another Indian Dhvaj Haria, while Advani will lock horns with Myanmar's Aung Htay in semi-finals on Monday.
After having lost to Sourav in the quarters of Long-Up format of the tournament, Advani was determined to push his way into semi-finals of 150-Up format. He pocketed the first three games and then conceded the next two before bagging the next two games, to send Dhruv packing home.
The first three games, Advani won by a huge margin of 150-0, 150-0 and 150-5, as he decimated the hopes of Dhruv at initial stages of the match.
Not to be cowed down, Dhruv registered 150-89 and 150-107 wins, with breaks of 70 and 151 in the fourth and fifth games.
However, Advani clinched the match 150-69 and 150-128 in sixth and seventh games.
Earlier in the day, Advani pulverized fellow Indian Devendra Joshi 4-0 in best of seven games in a pre-quarter-final match.
In a world-class display, Gilchrist did not allow his opponent to take charge of the match as he outwitted the Indian player 150-144, 150-38 and 150-60.
However, Gilchrist lost the fourth and fifth games to Sourav, who made a comeback of sorts by clinching 150-120 and 150-82, with help of 113 and 80 breaks, compared to Gilchrist's 104 and 146.
As Sourav reduced the gap 2-3, Gilchrist was ruthless in capitalising on Sourav's mistakes to pick the red or missing on cannons, at crucial junctures of the match.
The deciding seventh game was a treat to watch as Gilchrist, who was trailing 14 points against 54 by Sourav, scripted a match-winning break of 96 to enter the semi-finals.
Earlier in the day, Gilchrist trounced India's Brijesh Damani 4-2 in a best of seven games to storm into the final eight.
Others to storm into the semis are Htay, who defeated Alok Kumar five games to one, and India's Dhvaj, who outwitted Myanmar's Chit Ko Ko 5-3 in a scintillating neck-and-neck encounter.
Updated Date: Dec 12, 2016 12:49:38 IST