India’s iconic cueist Pankaj Advani won his record 26th IBSF World Billiards Championship crown in Doha, Qatar on Tuesday, November 21 to bring laurels to the country. Pankaj was as clinical as he could have possibly been in the summit clash and outclassed his compatriot Sourav Kothari by a staggering margin of 1000-416.
The victory in Doha is the 38-year-old’s ninth title in the long format of the championship whereas he has won the championship in the ‘point format’ for a record-eight times. Notably, Pankaj completely outplayed a fellow Indian Rupesh Shah by a jaw-dropping margin of 900-273 in the semis to book a berth in the finals.
Pankaj took to the social media platform ‘X’ and shared a beautiful caption dedicating his accomplishment to the country. “BSF World Billiards Champion (Long Format), this is for us India,” he posted.
Meanwhile, the loss in the final saw Sourav settle for silver whereas Rupesh and Dhruv Sitwala won a bronze each. The Sports Authority of India (SAI) acknowledged the feat attained by Pankaj and lauded his efforts and the other Indians who were in the fray.
“Pankaj Advani clinches his 26th World Billiards Title, defeating compatriot Sourav Kothari in a masterful display of skill and winning a glorious,” SAI posted on ‘X’.
Jay Shah, the secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) also heaped praise on Pankaj and congratulated him for bringing “immense pride to the nation”. “Incredible feat by Pankaj Advani! Securing his 26th World title in the World English Billiards (Long-Up) Championship 2023 at Doha, Qatar, is an outstanding accomplishment. He’s truly owned the game! Big congratulations, @PankajAdvani247! Your victory brings immense pride to the nation,” Shah posted on X.
Meanwhile, Amee Kamani and Vidya Pillai also made India proud by bagging a bronze each at the Women’s Snooker World Championships. In addition to that, Manan Chandra and Kamal Chawla also secured a bronze each at the World Snooker Master Championships.
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