All India snooker c'ship: National champion Ishpreet, Malkeet sail into quarters

Mumbai (INAS) National champion Ishpreet Singh Chadha of Maharashtra and National runner-up Malkeet Singh of Railways stormed into the quarterfinals of the National Sports Club of India (NSCI) All India Snooker Open 'Baulkline' 2022.

India number one Chadha quelled the challenge from seasoned cueist and former National champ Manan Chandra (PSPB) coasting to a 5-2 (24-100, 82-0, 36-74, 95-0, 63-8, 64-15, and 113-0) victory in the Rs 6.4 lakh prize money tournament at the NSCI billiards hall on Thursday.

Chandra started with a flourish and rolled in a break of 100 in the opening frame before Chadha replied with breaks of 39 in the second, 71 in the fourth and 72 in the seventh to complete the win.

In contrast, Malkeet was in superb form and outplayed Maharashtra's Hasan Badami cruising to a fluent 5-0 (70-42, 72-16, 86-6, 100-1, and 89-78) win without much ado. The India No. 2 potted quite consistently and produced breaks of 36, 72, 58, 86, and 55 in all the five frames in winning handsomely.

Maharashtra state champion Kreishh Gurbaxani also enjoyed a smooth passage and charged past Tamil Nadu's Vijay Ninchani (TN) coasting to a quick comfortable 5-0 (74-35, 63-53, 59-57, 72-16, and 69-64) victory to seal his spot in the quarters.

Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu's Dilip Kumar showed remarkable fighting qualities as he came from 2-4 behind to quash the aspirations of Railway cueist Pushpender Singh clinching a 5-4 (64-18, 92-32, 43-81, 31-76, 4-97, 76-64, 82-72, and 57-45) win.

The 32-year-old Kumar, not prepared to throw in the towel, bounced back splendidly and managed to narrowly pocket the last three frames to secure a tight win and a place in the last-8 round. Kumar compiled a break of 86 in winning the eighth frame.

Ishpreet and Kreishhh's sparring partner Sparsh Pherwani did not have it easy but managed to scrape through. Sparsh trailing 3-4 against Chandigarh's Rajat Kaneja came up with a fighting last-ditch effort to pocket the last two frames and snatch a thrilling 5-4 (44-58, 60-43, 9-61, 68-50, 43-58, 63-27, 46-63, 70-29, 62-9) win and a place in the quarterfinals, the organisers informed in a release on Thursday.

India number three Brijesh Damani and number seven Laxman Rawat and Sourav Kothari, all representing PSPB, also progressed to the quarterfinals. Damani halted the fine run of India number four Kamal Chawla posting a 5-2 (63-7), 72-36, 34-86, 63-47, 47-72, 73-63, and 60-35), while Rawat brushed aside Nitesh Madan of Railways 5-1 (75-70, 4-84, 71-24, 65-0, 74-45, and 70-61).

Kothari showed great touch and constructed substantial breaks of 70, 101 and 89 to tame Bihar's Shivam Arora romping to a 5-3 (78-12, 57-19, 34-58, 63-40, 5-81, 101-0, 15-65, and 98-2) victory.

Results (pre-quarter finals): Kreishh Gurbaxani (MAH) beat Vijay Ninchani (TN) 5-0 (74-35, 63-53, 59-57, 72-16, 69-64). Sparsh Pherwani (MAH) beat Rajat Kaneja (CHD) 5-4 (44-58, 60-43, 9-61, 68-50, 43-58, 63-27, 46-63, 70-29, 62-9).
Dilip Kumar (TN) beat Pushpender Singh (RLYS) 5-4 (64-18, 92-32, 43-81(49). 31-76, 4-97(76), 76-64, 82(56)-72, 57-45). Sourav Kothari (PSPB) beat Shivam Arora (BIH) 5-3 (78(70)-12, 57-19, 34-58, 63-40, 5-81(66), 101(101)-0, 15-65(64), 98(89)-2).
Malkeet Singh (RLYS) beat Hasan Badami (MAH) 5-0 (70(36)-42, 72(72)-16, 86(58)-6, 100(86)-1, 89(55)-78). 7-Laxman Rawat (PSPB) beat Nitesh Madan (RLYS) 5-1 (75(44)-70(64), 4-84(78), 71(70)-24, 65(40)-0, 74-45, 70-61). 3-Brijesh Damani (PSPB) beat 4-Kamal Chawla (RLYS) 5-2 (63(44)-7), 72-36, 34(32)-86(58), 63-47, 47-72(45), 73-63, 60(37)-35(34). Ishpreet Singh Chadha (MAH) beat Manan Chandra (PSPB) 5-2 (24-100(100), 82(39)-0, 36-74, 95(71)-0, 63-8, 64-15, 113(72)-0).
 

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