Field day for India at Worlds

It was a win-win situation for Indian cueists as the Pankaj Advani-led India ‘B’ secured a gold while India ‘A’ bagged silver in the inaugural World Billiards Team Championship here.

The winning team comprising Advani, Rupesh Shah, Devendra Joshi and Ashok Shandilya edged past their compatriots 5-4 in an exciting final here on Thursday night.In a first of its kind, the International Billiards and Snooker Federation (IBSF) decided to conduct a World Team event right after the Commonwealth Games to showcase the sport for a possible inclusion in the next edition of the quadrennial event.

This win takes the world Advani’s title tally, to an unprecedented 10.The Bangalore ace has entered the record books yet again, this time for winning the highest number of world titles by any Indian in any sport, let alone cue sports.When asked about this win, Advani said: “Winning a gold for India on Independence Day is a dream come true. We could not have asked for a better outcome as both teams confirmed gold and silver for our beautiful country.”

On being the only Indian sportsperson to have ever reached a double figure in the world title tally, hesaid, “Ten is a number beyond my wildest imagination! This one is special for a couple of reasons. One, of course is because it’s the 10th, and secondly, it’s my first team world title and playing with fellow Indians is a special feeling.

Scores: India ‘B’ bt India ‘A’ 5-4 (Rupesh Shah lt to B Bhaskar 160-163; Pankaj Advani bt Alok Kumar 439-193; Devendra Joshi lt to Sourav Kothari 189-271; Pankaj Advani bt B Bhaskar 242-214; Rupesh Shah lt to Sourav Kothari 161-384; Ashok Shandilya bt Alok Kumar 442-132; Pankaj Advani bt Sourav Kothari 613-116; Ashok lt to B Bhaskar 245-353; Rupesh Shah bt Alok Kumar 379-90).

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