Defending champion Alok Kumar managed to defeat his opponent Sri Lanka's A Jayarathne in a match which could have gone either way in the ongoing 11th ONGC Asian Billiards Championship, 2012.
The Lankan player appeared to have the edge in the very first game but he fumbled at a vital moment to let the golden opportunity slip.
In the second game too, Jayarathne had a good chance to win but again, he was found wanting when it mattered most. With two games under his belt, suddenly Kumar showed why he is such a dangerous opponent. The Indian cueist was simply unstoppable as he quickly wrapped up the third and fourth game for 4-0 clean sweep.
On the other table Kumar's compatriot, Arun Agrawal, who is staging a comeback into the international circuit, was involved in a titanic struggle with Thailand's Thanawat Sujaritthurakarn.
The Thai was the first to gain advantage as he won the opening game, but Arun, using his skills and experience, rallied brilliantly to win the next two games and took a 2-1 lead in the best of 7 contest.
But Sujaritthurakarn, who is a feared opponent when he is in form, had the last laugh by pocketing the fifth and sixth games.
Results (English Billiards): Alok Kumar (India) beat A Jayarathne (Sri Lanka): 4-0 (100-93, 105-60, 105-17, 100-31); Devendra Joshi (India) beat Nguyen Thanh Binh (Vietnam): 4-1 (100(88)-20, 100-33, 92-101, 100-52, 101(88)-20); Thanawat Sujaritthurakarn (Thailand) beat Arun Agrawal (India): 4-2 (10043, 58-100, 19-102, 101(96)-27, 102-5, 100(98)-16); Dhruv Sitwala (India) beat Chew Kok Hwa Ricky (Singapore) 4-0 (100(70)-8, 100(79)-63, 100(80)-63, 100(80)-08).