Pankaj Advani, five-time Asian Billiards Champion, bowed out of the Asian Billiards Championship after a surprise 3-5 defeat against compatriot Bhaskar Balachandra in the quarterfinals, in Colombo.
Losing the first frame 102-0, Pankaj came back into the match in the second frame 101-4 against his sparring partner while letting the third frame slip away to Bhaskar 102-80.
Matching frame to frame, Pankaj grabbed the fourth frame,102-71 before Bhaskar won the tightly contested fifth frame 100-94. In the sixth frame, it was Pankaj who owned the table, scoring a break of 102 and pocketing the frame 102-0 allowing Bhaskar not a minute at the table.
At three frames each in the best of 9, Indian, Bhaskar then proceeded to win the seventh frame 101-32 and fought hard against the World Champion in the eight frame, eventually winning the frame, 101-99 to win the quarterfinals of the Asian Billiards Championship 2016.
“Bhaskar is a great Billiards player and showed good form. Obviously I am disappointed in this loss, but life goes on. Now I am going to switch to snooker for a long season ahead,” Advani, who had entered the quarterfinal with a perfect scorecard of 4-0 said.
Balachandra will now face Peter Gilchrist in the semi- finals.