Bengaluru, Nov 21: Indian cue stars Pankaj Advani and Kamal Chawla today moved closer to the knockout stage after registering their third straight win against their respective opponents on Day 3 of the IBSF World Snooker Championship at Sree Kanteerava Stadium here.
After getting into the groove post his second win yesterday, Advani continued his magnificent form by outsmarting Austria's Paul Schopf 4-0 with breaks of 71 in the first frame, 52 and 84 clearance in the fourth. Billed as hot favourite to lift his 13th world title, Advani told reporters after the match that he played aggressively since his rival did not capitalise on his mistakes.
"I played aggressively especially since my opponent did not punish me for my mistakes," he said. This match against Schopf gave the national cue sport poster boy a chance to experiment before he stormed into the knockout stage, but Advani believes it's still a long way to go.
"Overall, it was a good win and I had the chance to experiment a bit, but there is still a long way to go," said Advani.
Chawla, nursing a ligament injury to his right thumb, essayed his third consecutive win 4-1 over Belgium's Jurgen Van Roy with a break of 57 in the third frame. "I stretched myself to the fifth frame. I should have won 4-0, but lost concentration in the fourth frame," he said.
The Madhya Pradesh cueist said the playing conditions are improving compared to the first two days, and winning three out of three is a good start. "I am playing well otherwise and the playing conditions have certainly improved from the previous two days. Three wins out of three is a good start," he added.
Another young Indian though did not have his way as 22-year-old Mumbai cueist Rahul Ajay Sachdev lost to the much-fancied Chinese teenager Yan Bingtao 1-4. The left-handed Sachdev, who took to playing snooker only four years ago and is being coached by Sanjay Sawant, did well to take the first frame against Bingtao.
However, Sachdev's inexperience surfaced as he committed errors in the second frame and the talented 14-year old Bingtao, who reached the round-of-16 in Shanghai Masters, took charge.