Bengaluru, Nov 21 (IANS) As the temperature dropped in the Sree Kanteerava Indoor Stadium after overnight repairs to the air-conditioning unit, there was a quantum jump in the quality of play as jostling began for knockout berths in the IBSF World Snooker Championship here Friday.
Thailand’s Boonyarit Keattikun crafted two century breaks of 100 and 103 while easing past Andrej Maksimov (Lithuania) 4-0 while Lee Chun Wai posted a high of 121 during his 4-1 win over Finn Jani Kananen and Welshman Gareth Allen had a 102 in his 4-2 win over Indian wildcard Divya Sharma.
Also crossing the 100-barrier was another Thai Phisit Chandsri, who had a run of 101 as he outplayed India’s Kamaraj S.H. 3-0 in the Masters section.
From India’s perspective, the home stars did not fail their fans as Pankaj Advani, Kamal Chawla and Chitra Magimarajan continued their unbeaten run by notching third consecutive win.
The past two days had seen players struggling with heat and humidity inside the stadium with the air-conditioning being barely adequate. Consequently, the tables turned slow and the balls were not responsive due to dampness. Overnight repairs, however, improved the conditions and it resulted in a drastic improvement in the quality of snooker.
The loudest applause of the day was reserved for 29-year-old Indian hope Advani who took a mere 45 minutes to outclass Paul Schopf of Belgium 4-0 with breaks of 71 in the first frame and 52 and 84 clearance in fourth.
Such was an aggressive Advani’s dominance that Schopf managed just 37 points, 26 of those in the third frame as the Indian star came through 103-04, 119-07, 56-26, 136-0, for his third win in as many matches to move closer to the knockouts.
“My opponent did not punish me for my mistakes and I took some chances that I normally wouldn’t if it were a knockout match. The conditions were better and the balls were responding well today and I took the opportunity to experiment a bit without taking unnecessary risks,” said Advani, the 2003 champion and runner-up in 2010.
Equally impressive was Kamal Chawla who too chalked up his third consecutive win in his group with a 4-1 drubbing of Jurgen van Roy of Belgium.
Chawla, a semi-finalist in 2010 and nursing a ligament injury to his right thumb that hampered his grip on the cue, looked to be in good touch as he raced to a 3-0 lead before dropping the fourth frame and then tightening up to take the fifth for the match.
“No, the ligament tear is not really hurting my game and I am playing well. I should have won 4-0 but lapsed in concentration in the fourth. Overall, I am pleased that I won three out of three,” said Chawla, who made a break of 57 in the third.
Later, Chitra showed good touch to post her third win on the trot as she beat Australia’s Bussanich Suzanne 3-0 to strengthen her chances to make the knockout grade.
Meanwhile, 22-year-old Rahul Ajay Sachdev from Mumbai came close to tripping rising Chinese star Yan Bingtao who lost the first frame but was let off the hook in the next four.
Sachdev took the first frame on a run of 60 but could not sustain the momentum as he lost the next four frames, two of which he could have won with a bit more care and patience.
The results (league, Indians unless mentioned):
Men – Group A: Amir Sarkhosh (IRN) bt Cader Mohamed (MAU) 4-0; Shivam Arora bt Tetsuya Kuwata (JPN) 4-0; Nick Jennings (ENG) bt Alan Whitfield (CAN) 4-2;
Group B: Jurian Heusdens (BEL) bt Mohsen Bukshaisa (QAT) 4-2; Laxman Rawat bt Antonis Poullos (CYP) 4-2; Mohammed Khairy (EGY) bt Thor Chuanleong (MAS) 4-1;
Group C: Kritsanut Lertsattayathorn (THA) bt Ivan Kakovsky (RUS) 4-2; Varun Madan bt Vinicius Da Silva Fucuta (BRA) 4-0; Hamza Akbar (PAK) bt Hatem Yaseen (EGY) 4-3;
Group D: Gareth Allen (WAL) bt Divya Sharma 4-2; Ali Alobaidli (QAT) bt M.S.M. Rasheed (SL) 4-0; Sanderson Lam (ENG) bt Farhad Sayfoo (MAU) 4-1;
Group E: Yan Bingtao (CHN) bt Rahul Ajay Sachdev 4-1; Asutosh Padhy bt Jim Johansson (SWE) 4-3.
Group F: Kamal Chawla bt Jurgen van Roy (BEL) 4-1; Ang Boon Chin (SIN) bt Mikhail Terekohv (RUS) 4-1; Shabaaz Adil Khan bt Marwan Alfalasi (UAE) 4-0.
Group G: Boonyarit Keattikun (THA) bt Andrej Maksimov (LIT) 4-0; Alvin Barbero (PHI) bt Paul Bason (NW) 4-0.
Group H: Pankaj Advani bt Paul Schopf (AUT) 4-0; Chi Wai Au (HK) bt Mike Toth (SUI) 4-1; Lucky Vatnani bt Thadeu Giannattasio Nobres (BRA) 4-3.
Group J: Lee Chun Wai (HK) bt Jan Kananen (FIN) 4-1.
Group K: Kok Leong Lim (MAS) bt Dharminder Lilly 4-3.
Group L: John Whitty (ENG) bt Zhao Xintong (CHN) 4-2; Keng Kwang Chan (SIN) bt Faisal Khan 4-2.
Group M: Sourav Kothari bt Michael Mengorio (PHI) 4-1.
Group N: Sundeep Gulati bt Tomasz Skalski (BEL) 4-0.
Group P: Brijesh Damani bt Mohamed Mubeen Mansoor (SL) 4-0.
Group Q: Nitesh Madan bt Darren Paris (SUI) 4-3.
Group R: Adrian Ridley (AUS) bt Sahil Nayyar 4-3.
Women – Group A: Waratthanun Sukritthanes (THA) bt Claudia Zardo Cordeiro (BRA) 3-0; Kathy Parashis (AUS) bt Neena Praveen 3-0; Ip Wan In Jaique (HK) bt Umadevi Revanna 3-1.
Group B: Siraphat Chitchomnart (THA) bt Kerry De Pradines (AUS) 3-0; Alexandra Teramoto Miyuki (BRA) bt Akram Mohammadi Amini (IRN) 3-0; Anastasia Nechaeva (RUS) bt Arantxa Sanchis 3-0.
Group C: Sue Martin (AUS) bt Anastasija Singurindi (RUS) 3-0; Nicola Illse Rossouw (RSA) bt Fernanda Irineu (BRA) 3-1; Ng On Yee (HK) bt Neeta Sanghvi 3-0.
Group D: Ka Kai Wan (HK) bt Carmelita Yumito (BRA) 3-0; Floriza Andal (PHI) bt Meenal Thakur 3-2; Chitra Magimairajan bt Bussanich Suzanne (AUS) 3-0.
Group E: Siripaporn Nuanthakhamjan (THA) bt Madeleine Jeanne Young (RSA) 3-0; Denise Santos (PHI) bt Suniti Damani 3-1; Irina Gorbataya (RUS) bt Judy Walia 3-1.
Masters – Group A: Derek Dudgeon (SCO) bt Paul Temple (NZ) 3-2; Nadeem Ahmed bt Masahiro Harada (JPN) 3-0.
Group B: Noel Rodrigues Moreira (BRA) bt Richard Kornberger (RSA) 3-0; Naveen Kumar K.S. bt Petri Kopponnen (FIN) 3-2.
Group C: Phisit Chandsri (THA) bt Kamaraj S.H. 3-0; Wayne Brown (ENG) bt Rene Hemelsoet (BEL) 3-0; Walid Abdel Mohsen (EGY) bt Marcio Da Silva Barthlomeu (BRA) 3-0.
Group D: Darren Morgan (WAL) bt Ng Yam Shui (HK) 3-1; Hisataka Kamihashi (JPN) bt Clausdieter Franschitz (AUT) 3-0.
Group E: Mohanraj Subramaniam (SUI) bt Naoki Matsuzaki (JPN) 3-0.