India's top cueist Pankaj Advani fought off a stiff resistance from Keen Hoo Moh of Malaysia to notch up a 4-2 win in his opening match in the Seaways IBSF World Snooker Championship in Bangalore.
After leading 2-0 with breaks of 65 & 85 in the first two frames, Advani lost the next two frames to Moh. Advani, however, found his touch again to take the next two frames with ease to win 4-2 on the opening day at the Kanteervava Indore Stadium.
National champion Vidya Pillai, one of the favourites to win the women's title, scored an easy 3-0 win over Russia's Anastasjia Singurindi in her opening league match. Pillai is the twice bronze medalist in this tournament.
Her team-mates Neena Praveen, Amee Kamani, Meenal Thakur, Neeta Sanghvi and Chitra Magimairajan won their respective opening matches. However, Arantxa Sanchis and Judy Walia, had a pretty bad day as they lost their lung-openers.
Pillai overcame opening day blues as she shrugged off a tentative start before finishing strongly with a break of 49 in the third frame.
"I did not play well today, but am happy to win my first match. I got into some sort of rhythm in third frame during my 49 break. Hopefully, I can carry the momentum," Pillai said.
Among the impressive winners today were China's 14-year old prodigy Yan Bingtao who beat Jim Johansson of Sweden 4-1 to start his campaign in the men's section in style.
Asian Snooker Champion Thor Chuan Leong started his campaign by registering a victory over Mohsen Bukshaisha 4-2. Leong became the only third Malaysian to claim the prestigious Asian Snooker Championship title in May.
The motley spectators at the venue witnessed a thrilling Group B encounter between Belgium's Jurian Heusdens and Scotland's Gary Thomson. The Belgian won 4-3. In another match in same group, Antonis Poullus of Cyprus beat Mohamed Khairy of Egypt 4-2.
In men's Group A category, Amir Sarkhosh of Iran beat Nick Jennings of England 4-3. Alan Whitfield of Canada defeated Tetsuya Kuwata of Japan 4-2 and Robert Murphy of Ireland beat Cader Mohammed of Maurituis 4-0.
Former world champion Darren Morgan of Wales slammed four half-centuries while brushing aside Indian wild card Farhad Tengra 3-0 in the Masters category.
Image: Pankaj Advani