Pankaj Advani pockets first Asian 6-Red crown

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Pankaj Advani pockets first Asian 6-Red crown
Pankaj Advani secured his first title of the season by winning the 5th Asian Snooker Championship in Abu Dhabi.

Abu Dhabi - Securing his first title of the season with a 7-5 margin, Advani said that he was just happy to get through as Moh is a 'very dangerous player'.

By Ashwani Kumar

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Published: Mon 23 May 2016, 12:00 AM

Last updated: Tue 24 May 2016, 9:53 AM

Indian cueist Pankaj Advani survived a tough final test against Keen Hoo Moh of Malaysia to pot his first Asian 6-Red Snooker Championship at Novotel Al Bustan Hotel in Abu Dhabi on Sunday night.
Securing his first title of the season with a 7-5 margin, Advani said that he was just happy to get through as Moh is a 'very dangerous player'.
 "He can suddenly come up with some ridiculous long pots and finish off frame," Advani said about the Malaysian.
On being asked if the best two cueists had made the final, the World number 1 in 6-Red, said: "Moh is probably the best player of this format here. There were couple of matches were I didn't play well and somehow pulled through. Moh on the other hand had won most of his matches comfortably. And a lot of people said the final is a perfect match as two players who played well are through."
Advani said he was desperate to land this title, especially since he hasn't won an Asian snooker title.
"It's important to keep winning. You don't want to go 8-10 months without a title. There are times when I should have won a match and was unable to go over the line. Today also I had a feeling if this went to decider, I was unsure if I could do it."
But at the end he held his nerves to land his first Asian snooker title.
"I was trying for long but not winning. So am happy to win an Asian title in any format of snooker."
 In the semis, Advani had a comfortable 6-1 win over Aditya Mehta but in the final he was a bit scratchy. There were many frames where he fought back - especially one where he was down 36-0 and came back to win the point. It was definitely his hunger to win that saw him through.
"Sometimes you got to hang in there. You have to dig deep and do something like I did today," he said.
 While preparing for this tournament, he had asked the Karnataka State Billiards Association in Bengaluru to place a match cloth in his practice venue for him to get acclimatised to the conditions in Abu Dhabi. India's first world champion in 6-Red snooker also talked about the expectations back home. "People back home want you to win and if don't then they start talking. I feel the people back home don't appreciate the magnitude of our achievement."
Next up, Advani will play in the team's event. He is yet to decide his partner but said he would be playing.
 Meanwhile, Keen Ho Mo just said that the best man had won.
Mo had a simple mantra for winning 6-Red matches, "Make less mistakes and you have a good chance to pocket the match."
 "I made a few errors today and Pankaj won," he signed off.

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