Pakistan starts well in World Snooker

By our correspondent

LAHORE: Pakistan’s cueists on Sunday were off to a bright start when they conquered their respective opponents in the IBSF Men’s World Snooker Championship in Doha.

Mohammad Naseem Akhtar and Babar Masih won their respective group matches on the first day of the global event.

In Group F meeting Mohammad Naseem Akhtar conquered Finland’s Esa Oikarinen 4-2.

Naseem showcased tremendous skills in the contest which enthralled the audience. At one stage the game was evenly poised 2-2. However Naseem brought huge discipline in his game and demonstrated terrific potting ability to clinch the show with an enviable ease in the end by lifting the remaining two frames with heavy margins.

After lifting the first frame 54-19 Naseem lost his focus in the second frame which he conceded 7-85. However he regained his composure and won the third frame in commanding manner with 81-0 to take 2-1 lead.

He also made his highest break of 54 in the frame which was captivating.

In the fourth frame Esa Oikarinen made a super effort as he downed Naseem 64-46 to level the score 2-2.

However now it was Naseem’s turn to put in his best. He exuded a lot of confidence and the two blows he faced before did not let dent his determination. He put into use all his skills he had and engineered a 98-9 and 96-0 wins in the last two frames to seal a solid win.

Meanwhile Babar Masih also started well to win his Group K show rather in more commanding fashion 4-1 against Oman’s Husain Allawati.

After losing the first frame 39-52 Babar fought back strongly and swept away the next four frames quite convinginly to record a fantastic win.

Babar levelled the score 1-1 by winning the second frame 69-30. He then continued with his killer instinct and took away the next three frames 75-5, 71-58 and 71-16 to seal an emphatic triumph.

On Monday Babar Masih will lock horns with Andrel Orzan of Romania, Mohammad Naseem Akhtar will meet Mohammad Al-Binali of Qatar while Ahsan Ramzan will be pitted against Alexander Widau of Germany in their respective group matches.

As many as 75 cueists from 37 nations have been bracketed in 19 different groups with the top 38 progressing to the knock-out stage of the event which will be held on November 8. The event’s semi-finals will be conducted on November 9 with the final to be held on November 10.By

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