Doha : Fifteen-time world champion Pankaj Advani on Monday entered the semifinals of the IBSF World Snooker Championship to assure India a medal, here.
Advani defeated Thailand’s Thanawat Tirapongpaiboon 6-5 in an exciting quarterfinal duel to guarantee India a medal in the men’s tournament. Early on, the Indian ace was in complete control of the proceedings taking a 5-3 lead in the the best of 11 match.
With Advani needing just one more frame to seal the affair, the Thai made a strong comeback with some fine potting. Tirapongpaiboon put Advani under tremendous pressure by winning the next two frames and taking the game into the decider.
The final frame witnessed a neck-and-neck fight and eventually it all came down to the last black ball and Advani kept his cool to enter the semifinals.
Earlier defending his 2015 title, Advani stayed on course with identical victories in the last-32 and prequarterfinal matches. The ace cueist overcame Pakistan’s Babar Masih and then Keen Hoo Moh of Malaysia with 5-3 scorelines. The last-16 tie against the Malaysian included a stunning 126 break by Advani. Advani is the sole men’s player remaining from India. –PTI