Cueist Advani aiming for Asian Billiards title

Bengaluru, Feb 23 (IANS) As the last week of training sets in for India’s Pankaj Advani prior to the Asian Billiards Championship, his aim to set another record is apparent.

With a record 15 World titles across all formats of billiards and snooker, the 30-year-old is eager to break his own record of the maximum number of Asian Billiards Championship titles as he participates in the tournament in Colombo from March 1 to 8.

A finalist in the previous season after losing to compatriot Dhruv Sitwala, Advani was the first to admit that the challenge of winning the title after a drought of three years would be tough.

“None of the competitions that I have ever participated in have been easy. Every competition in all formats of the sport has always presented its own challenges and competition and it’s the excitement in conquering those challenges that keeps me going,” the two-time Asian Games gold medallist said.

“Holding a record five titles in this championship, I know that working towards another title will be an uphill task with some tough competition from Singapore’s Gilchrist and Thailand’s Praput and Thawat not discounting the strong Indian challenge from last year’s champion Dhruv.”

With the event being played in the 100Up format, the outcome of each match in this short game will almost be impossible to predict.

“The lack of control in this format is what I believe makes it even more exciting. The skill of being a champion in the sport has taken me years to hone and perfect, the unpredictability of this format presents itself in scenarios that are tough to fully decipher and foresee. A challenge that is on conquering will present itself in a hard-earned title,” concluded Advani.

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