Celebration time at Advani house

Celebration time at Advani house

Right on cue

Advani’s mother Kajal (right) and brother Shree shows how many world titles he has won so far. DH photoThe 24-year-old Bangalorean pulled off one of the most memorable wins in Indian billiards history to become the second Indian, after Geet Sethi, to win the world professional title.

Advani’s mother Kajal told Deccan Herald:  “This is a great moment for the entire family. It’s his first professional title since turning pro in 2007 and I’m sure it’s something we will all cherish for a very long time.”

“To beat a player of Mike Russell’s calibre is a big achievement but to win the way he did, that is something no one expected. He is a talented young man. He is destined for much more,” she added.

The mother of two kept her emotions in check but pride in her younger son’s accomplishment was evident.

“I handle all the federation procedures so he can go out there; not worry about a thing and have fun. We barely speak during tournaments and I don’t really get to watch the matches but I closely followed the final against Russell, with a relative updating me with the scores.”

“I hope he goes on to win many more laurels for himself, the family and the country.”

“Ecstatic is all that I can say,” said Pankaj’s elder brother Shree Advani. “The biggest thing about the win is that now he can have the critics off his back. He can challenge the biggest guys in billiards today but I just hope he maintains this winning run. The main thing about big achievements are the equally big responsibilities that come with it.

“He called me shortly after the match and said: ‘This feels really good but Mike is just so humble and genuine in his compliments. I’m just glad that people will finally stop talking about how I could not make it big in the big league’.”