Matunga Gymkhana 6-Red Open Handicap Snooker Tournament.
Arantxa romps into elite round

Double world champion Arantxa Sanchis of Pune won back-to-back matches to storm into the elite round, in the Matunga Gymkhana 6-Red Snooker Tournament on Saturday.

Sanchis, the only women in the world to win gold in both, the IBSF World Billiards (2015) and Team Snooker (2013), kicked off her campaign with an exciting 4-3 win over Kartikeya Sharma of Vashi in the opening round of the second phase after leading 3-1 and being forced into the decider when Sharma fluked the red and cleared, in the crucial sixth frame.

Winner of 10 national titles Sanchis, who trains under former Asian champion Yasin Merchant, later made amends when she crushed Deepak Khubchandani of Khar Gymkhana 4-0 to join the elite cueists in the final round of the competition.

“I took time to get into a rhythm when I played my first match,” reasoned Shiv Chhtrapati awardee Sanchis who trains at the New Poona Club and Deccan Gymkhana in Pune. “But I managed to hold on to a good lead in the decider.”

Vishal Gehani of Park Club lived dangerously before prevailing over Otters Club marker Joseph Menezes in a 4-3 thriller after leading 3-0, while Poras Shah of Matunga Gymkhana beat Abhishek Soparkar of Thane 4-2 in another close tie after a brilliant long brown pot and a black ball finish in the sixth frame.

The other winners were 12-time state champion Arun Agrawal of Matunga Gymkhana, Mahadev Bhogle of JVPG, Vishal Madan of Chembur Gymkhana and 2014 state sub junior billiards champion 13-year-old Kreishh Gubaxani of Khar Gymkhana.


2nd Phase: Final qualifying rd: Arantxa Sanchis bt Deepak Khubchandani 43-25, 48-35, 55-8, 38-18.
1st Rd: Nikhil Saigal bt Vivek Nepali 42-36, 36-47, 46-43, 23-45, 45-30, 44-25; Poras Shah bt Abhishek Soparkar 16-45, 34-18, 43-20, 48-41, 35-43, 43-38; Sumit Sardulkar bt Sumil Karkera 52-16, 38-67, 54-18, 49-15, 48-24; Vishal Gehani bt Joseph Menezes 39-37, 41-23, 45-43, 29-43, 45-54, 13-50, 51-35; Arantxa Sanchis bt Kartikeya Sharma 44-27, 46-32, 16-44, 46-25, 27-49, 21-55, 43-17; Deepak Khubchandani bt Sahil Khan 55-30, 47-27, 46-8, 41-18; Harmehr Mago bt Kewal Mahadeshwar 59-38, 61-48, 37-44, 60-47, 50-21;Mahadev Bhogle bt Nikhil Ghadge 48-15, 44-10, 18-54, 34-24, 50-29; Arun Agrawal bt Samuel Selven 41-15, 46-32, 43-28, 41-38;Surya Prakash Singh bt Kunal Rokade 59-26, 32-50, 52-21, 42-22, 58-22; Darshan Shah bt Mustafa Khozem 50-26, 52-18, 26-44, 18-49, 48-22, 56-26; Vishal Madan bt Gaurav Jaisinghani 63-20, 19-42, 45-32, 46-35, 26-47, 46-18; Kreishh Gurbaxani bt Ibrahim Sheikh 51-23, 41-44, 25-51, 42-22, 42-34, 53-32.