Bangalore: Chitra Magimairajan and young Amee Kamani on Saturday qualified for the knock-out stage of the Seaways-IBSF World Snooker Championship after recording convincing victories over their respective rivals, in Bangalore.
Bengaluru-based veteran Magimairajan brushed aside compatriot Meenal Thakur 3-1 for her fourth win while 22-year old Kamani from Mumbai chalked up her third win in as many matches by blanking Iran’s Akram Mohammadi Amini 3-0 in Group D.
With top four players from each of the six Groups to qualify for the knock-out stage, both Magimairajan and Kamani were assured of their slots in the round of 24.
Meanwhile, one of the most talented Indian cueists Manan Chandra warmed up nicely for the difficult matches ahead by posting a fluent 4-0 win over New Zealand veteran Paul Bason for his third consecutive success in his group.
The 33-year old Delhi-based Chandra whose performances since winning the 2006 National title have done little justice to his talent, did as he pleased against Bason and was pleased as punch that he managed to get into some sort of rhythm after inconsistent showing in his previous two matches here.
“I did play a few careless shots today, but otherwise, I am happy for my third win. I decided to play an open game and went for the breaks. I now have some tough matches ahead in the group and I hope to do well,” said Chandra whose best break against Bason was an 82 in the third frame.
Asian champion Thor Chuan Leong of Malaysia, who was surprised 1-4 by Egypt’s Mohamed Khairy earlier in the day, put his campaign back on track defeating Belgian Jurian Heusdens 4-2 in a late night match.
Meanwhile, title favourite Pankaj Advani and fellow-Indian Kamal Chawla chalked up contrasting victories to remain unbeaten in their group after four outings.
Advani, the 29-year old Bengalurean, fought hard and long to beat compatriot Lucky Vatnani 4-2 in a battle of attrition while Chawla eased past New Zealand’s Paul Bason 4-0.
Vatnani led 1-0 and 2-1 with a break of 53 in the first frame, and seemed to have a struggling Advani on the ropes with some excellent safety play.
However, the more experienced Advani fought his way back with runs 57, 52 and 68 in the fourth, fifth and sixth frames to clinch the issue.
“I am happy to come through this match. Lucky played good safety game, but I couldn’t adjust to the conditions at the start. However, I thought I played well in the latter part of the match,” said Advani, holder of 12 World titles.