Top-ranked Pankaj Advani of ONGC was in scintillating form as he showed his class by constructing a magnificent 131 clearance break and went on to record a comprehensive 4-0 win against local challenger Manav Panchal of Mumbai in the best-of-seven-frame round of 64 match of the CCI All India Open Snooker Championship.
His century break in the third frame is the best in the competition and has now qualified for the highest break prize of Rs 25,000. The qualifying mark was 130 and above. He rolled in another decent run of 53 in the fourth frame to complete a quick 78-24, 65-4, 131-0 and 73-22.
The Bangalore-based National champion and India No. 1 Pankaj was all finesse and showed immaculate touch over the cue ball as he managed to get into perfect positions to pot with accuracy and a high degree of consistency to produce the big efforts.
However, Indian No. 4 Kamal Chawla of Railway fell by the wayside as he suffered a 1-4 defeat at the hands of Telangana’s Lucky Vatnani in another round of 64 encounter.
In another round of 64 tie, Indian no 5 Sourav Kothari of PSPB also crashed out as he stumbled to a 3-4 defeat against Railways Malkeet Singh in a tense match. Malkeet came up with a timely break of 60 in the decider to snatch a deserving 83-12, 27-68, 1-86, 59-8, 1-69, 69-27 and 74)-34 win.
Meanwhile, national champion Varsha Sanjeev of Karnataka went down fighting to Mumbai’s flambouyant Vimal Mariwala losing a seven-frame thriller by a 3-4 margin.
The number one India women cueist Sanjeev, playing in only her second open tournament, had her chances but blew them away as she missed some easy pots and let Mariwala off the hook.
Mariwala playing in his usual free-flowing fashion cashed in on the chances to clinch a 80-9, 45-51, 52-39, 19-49, 62-63, 43-39 and 50-29 victory to progress to the round of 32.