Concluded
 INDIAN OPEN SNOOKER WORLD RANKING TOURNAMENT 2015
Organised by BSAM
10 March 2015 to 14 March 2015

Chief Guest Shri Vinod Tawde (right), presented the winners’ trophy to Michael White of Wales

  • Venue

    GRAND HYATT

    SATACRUZ, KALINA

  • Description

     

    DRAW Format of Play
     

     

    14-3-2015 
    11:00 AM (Semi Final - I) 12:00 NOON (Semi Final- II)   6:30 PM (Final)

    Mark Williams V/S Michael White

    Thepchaiya Un- Nooh V/S Ricky Walden

     

    Winner Match Of  67 V/S 68

     

     

    Welshman White wins maiden ranking title

    Mumbai, March 14: Michael White of Wales, world ranked 22, was in tremendous form and gave a brilliant exhibition of potting with control and breaking building as he completely whitewashed England’s world rank 8, Ricky Walden 5-0, in the best-of-9-frame final of the 300,000 pounds Indian Open Snooker World Ranking Tournament, organized by the Billiards and Snooker Federation of India (BSFI), and being played at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, Kalina, on Saturday evening.

    The 23-year-old Welshman from Neath, was quickly off the blocks and every time Walden made a mistake he was punished by White who captitalised on the openings by constructing some neat breaks of 81 in the first, 77 in the second, 45 and 41 in the third and 32 and 58 in the fourth, to take a commanding 4-0 lead before a short interval. The 25-minute break did not help Walden to regain his concentration and focus while White once again continued to hit the balls with a high degree of precision and came up with another run of 85, which was the highest of the match, win the frame and to emerge champion. On the other hand  the 32-year-old Walden was completely out of touch and could muster only 27 points in the match which finished in less than 54 minutes.

    This triumph was White’s maiden world ranking title and will he return home richer by 50,000 pounds, while Walden pocketed the runner-up prize of 25,000 pounds. The Welshman, who won his first pro title when he defeated China’s Xiao Guodong in the Snooker Shoot-out in Blackpool, England last week, has also recorded his first win against the Englishman in three meetings. White had lost to Walden in the quarter-finals of the World Championship in 2013 and in the Euro PTC 2 in October 2010.

    Earlier in the semi-finals played in the morning, Walden had to bring out his best to overcome a 0-3 deficit and script a sensational 4-3 win against qualifier and giant-killer Thepachiaya Un-Nooh of Thailand, who was playing his first ever semi-final of a ranking tournament. The Thai, world ranked 61, had beaten world number 4 and defending champion Ding Junhui of China in the first round and world number 12 Mark Davis in the previous round, before falling to guiles of the England pro, who cleverly adopted a tactical defensive game. The left-handed Thai cueist returned home richer by 13,500 pounds.

    In the first semi-final, White was in full flow against his countryman and idol Mark Williams, world rank 15, scoring a comfortable 4-2 victory. The former two-time world champion Williams another southpaw, won the first frame but was unable to stop the younger Welshman, who rattled in a table clearance break of 126 in the second and then signed off with a 87 in the sixth to wrap up the match.

    Shri Vinod Tawde, Honourbale Minister for Sports & Youth Affairs, Government of Maharashtra, was the Chief Guest and presented the Trophies and cash awards to winners and Runner-up.

    Results – Final: Michael White (Wales) bt Ricky Walden (England) (81(81)-0, 77(77)-20, 86(45, 41)-0, 90(32, 58)-1, 85(85)-6).

    Semi-final: Michael White (Wales) bt Mark Williams (Wales) 4-2 (41-65, 126(126)-7, 66-23, 80(41)-40, 39-68(55), 109(87)-4).

    Ricky Walden (England) bt Thepchaiya Un-Nooh (Thailand) 4-3 (0-78(78), 53(53)-68(62), 0-72(68), 81-0, 73(42)-36, 78(78)-0, 91(41)-47(34).


    Welsman Williams, White to clash in semis

    Mumbai: Mark Williams and Michael White, both from Wales scored fluent wins in the pre-quarter-finals of the 300,00 pounds Indian Open Snoker World Ranking Tournament, organized by the Billiards and Snooker Federation of India and being played at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, Kalina.

    The senior pro, 39-year-old Williams, world ranked 15, was in total control throughout his 4-1 demolition of England’s 38-year-old Robert Milkin, who is ranked one place lower.

    On the adjacent table, the 23-year-old White who is ranked 22 in the world recovered well after going down 2-1 to put it across Chris Wakelin of England, winning 4-2 to set up a semi-final with his compatriot, Williams who inspired him to play the sport.

    Results

    Round III: Mark Williams (Wales) bt Robert Milkins (England) 4-1 ((69(51)-28, 58-45, 77(76)-0, 90(36, 54)-0, 67-12).

     Michael White (Wales) bt Chris Wakelin (England) 4-2 (0-76, 59(55)-7, 0-82(63), 72(71)-22, 99(99)-0, 55-46).


    Aditya Mehta bows out, Thailand’s Un-Nooh lone Asian survivor

    Mumbai, March 13: While India’s Aditya Mehta bowed out in the second round, Thailand’s Thepchaiya Un-Nooh kept the Asian challenge alive by advancing to the quarter-finals of the 300,000 pounds Indian Open Snooker World Ranking Tournament, organized by the Billiards and Snooker Federation of India (BSFI), and being played at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, Kalina.

    The 29-year-old Mumbai cueist, Mehta, ranked 50th in the world was no match for England’s Ricky Walden going down rather tamely by a 4-2 margin in a second round match late Thursday night.

    The 29-year-old Thai Un-Nooh, ranked 61 in the world, played without any pressure but with loads of confidence, as he came back after losing the losing the first frame to sideline 45th ranked Welshman Jamie Jones 4-1, finishing with a neatly compiled break of 123 and for the first time reaching the first quarter-final of a ranking event.

    The 32-year-old Englishman, Walden ranked 8 in the world, showed awesome touch and quickly got down to business by comfortably taking the opening three frames before the Indian delayed his march to victory by winning the next two to narrow the lead. Walden, who had earlier compiled breaks of 63 and 42 in the first two frames, produced another decent effort of 43 in the sixth to complete a 70(63)-0, 78-27, 77-13, 18-73, 0-76, 81-1 victory.

    The Mumbai pro was not too disappointed with the outcome and quite modestly admitted that he was beaten by a better player. “He (Walden) started better than me and played well in the first few frames. He potted some great balls, great balls and scored and I missed and he punished me every time,” said Mehta.

    The Indian pointed out that his performance did not have any bearing on his loss. “There was nothing wrong with my game. I am number 50 in the world and he is ranked 8 so you could see that at the end of the day,” Mehta further stated.

     “I have to think about what I could have done differently. Obviously he’s one of the top players in the world I could not afford to let him off to a good start, “ lamented Mehta who will now shift his focus to the World Championship, starting in about two weeks in Sheffield, England.

    Thepchaiya is now the only player from Asia remaining in the tournament after the two remaining Chinese players, Li Hang and Tian Pengfei lost their last 16 round matches, to Michael White and Walden respectively.

    The young 23-year-old White, world ranked 22, enjoyed a good run of the balls piling up runs of 94, 109, 62 and 77 in dispatching off 64th ranked Chinese Hang, who is a year older by a 4-2 margin, while Walden, who had killed the Indians interests in the tournament when he put an abrupt end Mehta’s run blanked Pengfei 4-0.

    Wales 39-year-old Mark Williams, world ranked 15, showed tremendous fighting qualities as came from 3-2 down to beat world number 6, Judd Trump of England 4-3 in thrilling and exciting contest.

    Mark Davis of England, world raanked 18, extended his winning streak against former four-time world champion and 12th ranked John Higgins, coasting to a 4-0 win for a a sixth consecutive victory over the 39-year-old Scotsman.

    Results - Round II: Ricky Walden (England) bt Aditya Mehta 4-2 (70(63)-0, 78(42)-27, 77-13, 18-73, 0-76(46), 81(43)-1).

    Round III: Mark Williams (Wales) bt Judd Trump ( England) 4-3 (92(68)-23, 20-112(104), 108(108)-4, 4-73(55), 1-67(67), 59-25, 70(63)-21).

    Chris Wakelin (England) bt Nigel Bond (England) 4-1 (70(50)-52, 73-48, 96(96)-0, 24-69(69), 68(41)-56(55).

    Robert Milkins (England) bt Graeme Dott (Scotland) 4-2 (24-81(69), 67(60)-6, 63-24, 73(68)-6, 5-76(47), 79-7).

    Michael White (Wales) bt Li Hang (China) 4-2 (94(94)-0, 8-102(50), 118(109)-8, 36-89(41), 89(62)-23, 77(77)-0).

    Mark Davis (England) bt John Higgins (Scotland) 4-0 (77(72)-4, 87(87)-1, 62-32, 66(66)-1).

    Ricky Walden (England) bt Tian Pengfei (China) 4-0 (64(46)-17, 65(45)-12, 53-40, 75(75)-20).

    Thepchaiya Un-Nooh (Thailand) bt Jamie Jones (Wales) 4-1 (17-63, 73(55)-10, 69-58, 79(51)-1, 123(123)-4).

    Joe Perry (England) bt Kyren Wilson (England) 4-3 (81(66)-40, 16-63, 42-71, 63(55)-61, 78(38,40)-0, 25-55. 79(55)-0).


    Aditya Mehta pips King to keep Indian interest alive

    Mumbai, March 12: Adity Mehta, the lone Indian left in the fray, produced a solid performance which kept his countrymen’s interest alive in the 300,000 pounds Indian Open Snooker World Ranking Tournament, being played at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, Kalina. The 29-year-old Mumbai cueist Mehta showed great composure and fighting spirit to stave off the challenge from England’s 40-year-old Mark King before snatching a nail-biting 4-3 victory in a first round match, late Wednesday night.

    The Indian, world ranked 50, started with a flourish and with his more senior and experienced English opponent, ranked 33, struggling with his potting, he opened up a solid 3-0 lead. Later King with breaks of 69 and 35 took the fourth frame to reduce the gap. In the fifth, Mehta came within distance of winning the frame and closing out the match 4-1. Trailing 18-50 and with the last three reds left on table Mehta in a cool and calculated manner stitched together 38 points. But with only the black to be potted he played a hasty shot and left the ball on the mouth of the pocket. King made sure to sink the black to win the frame by a narrow one point (57-56) and then went on to pocket the sixth to level scores at 3-all and take the match into the decider.

    In the deciding seventh frame Mehta, though, in control made a few mistakes and survived some anxious moments. However, he made up by producing timely breaks of 45 and then a useful 19 which put the issue beyond the reach of the Englishman. King not prepared to give up attempted to snooker the Indian, who did well to come out of those tight situations and go on to win the frame and the match to advance to the second round. Mehta, who had lost to King in four previous meetings prevailed at 82-7, 60-17, 78-9, 25-104, 56-57, 45-76, 76-4.

    Later the Indian stated that he was satisfied with his performance. "Obviously, I am hugely relieved to get through my first round match and especially to keep the Indian interest alive after the exit of all the six Indian wild carders,” said Mehta.

    He also said that he should have won more comfortably. “Today I matched him in quality and he took time to adjust to the conditions but I knew once he did that he will come back hard. I should have won the match 4-1 but missed on the black. I should have taken a little more time to get back my breath before attempting to play that match-winning shot,” he further stated.

    "I now want to take one match at a time. I will go into the next match with more confidence as I am playing well and (I am) fit both physically and mentally," admitted Mehta.

    In second round matches on Thursday, 23-year-old Kyren Wilson of England, world ranked 60, stunned higher ranked, 27-year-old compatriot, Ben Woollaston, ranked 26, by a convincing 4-1 margin.

    The young Englishman Wilson lost the first frame but replied with a bang firing in a well-constructed century effort (119) in the second and a neat 105 in the fourth. Besides those two breaks, he compiled breaks of 52 and 75 in the third and fifth frames respectively to knock the fight out of his rival and complete a deserving win. He has now set up pre-quarter-final meeting with countryman Joe Perry, ranked 13, who sidelined another England cueist Rod Lawler, ranked 35, by a similar 4-1 margin.

    Mark Davis, ranked 18, was another English cueist to advance to the round of 16. The 42-year-old Davis put to good use his vast experience to beat back a spirited fight from Scotland’s 24-year-old Anthony McGill, winning 4-3 in a long drawn affair.

    Results - Round I: Aditya Mehta (India) bt Mark King (England) 4-3 (82(30,43)-7, 60(52)-17; 78(64)-9, 25-104(69,35), 56-57(50), 45-76, 76(45)-4).

    Round II: Robert Milkins (England) bt Joe Swail 4-1 (78(54)-44, 84(84)-0, 86(86)-0, 35-101(52,49), 75(53)-24).

    Kyren Wilson (England) bt Ben Woollaston (England) 4-1 (24-74, 119(119)-1, 69(52)-35, 110(105)-16, 76(75)-6).

    Jamie Jones bt Gerard Greene 4-3 (13-49, 69(58)-31, 49(36)-72, 77(30)-14, 72(51,20)-0, 7-55, 72(68)-9).

    Li Hang bt Stuart Carrington 4-1 (90(90)-33, 65(55)-33(33), 78(39)39)-44, 0-138(138), 66(52)-0).

    Graeme Dott bt Davis Morris 4-0 (64(36)-8, 91(91)-0, 68(60)-7, 62(48)-35).

    Joe Perry (England) bt Rod Lawler (England) 4-1 (120(70)-0, 64(58)-52, 37-92(76), 91-23, 95(95)-8).

    Mark Davis (England) bt Anthony McGill (Scotland) 4-3 (63-52, 77(52)-33, 84(41)-43, 28-73(49), 19-64(37), 1-70(70), 70(47)-41).

    Tian Pengfei (China) bt Mark Joyce (England) 4-1 (59(40)-106(51), 62(48)-41, 70(50)-58), 71-41, 106(106)-0).


    Top seed Ding falls to qualifier Un-Nooh

    Top seed Ding falls to unknown Thai qualifier Un-Nooh

    Mumbai: Top seed and defending champion Ding Junhui of China crashed out at the first hurdle going down fighting to qualifier Thepchaiya Un-Nooh of Thailand 3-4 in the opening round on Wednesday evening. This was the third successive first round exit for the 27-year-old Chinese, who had earlier lost in the German Masters and Welsh Open last month. His best result this year was winning the Asian Tour Event One title in China last June.

    The 29-year-old Thai cueist, who had defeated India’s Neeraj Kumar 4-0 in the wild card qualifying round on Tuesday, showed no signs of nerves playing against the world number 4, Chinese and grabbed his chances to pull off the upset win.

    The left-handed Un-Nooh played steadily and consistent making breaks of 40 (1st frame), 58 (6th) and 66 and 46 in the seventh as against two century runs by the fancied Chinese who compiled 102 in the 4th and 119 in the 5th.

    The Thai was elated after the match and said that he knew what to expect from his Chinese opponent. “I started without any worries and soon took a 2-0 lead. But he (Ding) came back strongly by winning three straight frames and I just told myself that I should get just one chance. When it came I grabbed it to tie the scores and 3-all and with that confidence won the final frame,” said an excited Un-Nooh, who further pointed out that this was his best win of his pro career.

    A disappointed Ding heaped praise on his rival and admitted that he was beaten by a player who played better. “He (Un-Nooh) played well and deserved to win. I had a few bad shots which cost me the match.”


    Lily lets China’s Haotian off the hook, fails to qualify for main draw

    Mumbai, March 10:

    India’s Dharmendra Lilly had his chances, but let them slip out of his hands and also the opportunity to qualify for the main draw of the 300,000 pounds prize money 2nd Indian Open Snooker World Ranking Tournament, organised by the Billiards & Snooker Federation of India (BSFI) and being played at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, Kalina. The Punjab cueist squandered a good 3-1 lead before going down to China’s 74th ranked Lyu Haotian 3-4 in a long draw wild card qualifying match on Tuesday evening.

    The 40–year-old Punjabi showed promise and kept his hopes alive of progressing to the main tournament when he raced to a 2-0 lead and then extend it to 3-1 before the 17-year-old Chinese with some steady efforts, a 79 break in the third, 49 in the fifth and 56 in the sixth clawed his way back to draw level at 3-all and take the match to the deciding seventh frame.

    In the decider, Lily once again was sitting pretty when he started with a run of 33. But after sinking his fifth red he missed a regulation black pot and the Chinese replied with a 33 break of his own. Haotian also missed the black in the same top pocket. After that both adopted to safety play before the Chinese marginally went ahead at and 58-49. With only the last two colours remaining, Haotian who only required to pot one of the two balls missed a difficult pink in the top pocket which provided Lily with the perfect situation to win the frame.

    However, for the second time Lily made a hash, missing a straight pink as he tried to get into position for the black, which was against the top cushion and let his opponent off the hook. Haotian this time made certain that he would not let go of the chance and coolly rolled the pink to complete a deserving win.

    Lily later admitted that the black miss in the decider proved to be his downfall. “I was doing well but the black miss was the turning point otherwise I could have gone on to make a break of 60 plus which would have sealed the frame for me,” said Lily, who appreciated the performance of  his young rival. “He (Haotian) played very well and whenever he got the chance he made some good breaks which helped him to win.”

    Earlier, three other Indians Neeraj Kumar, Brijesh Damani and Sumit Talwar were unable to shake off the opening day’s nerves and lost out on the opportunity to make it to the main draw.

    The 35-year-old Kumar was unable to offer any sort of resistance to Thailand’s Thepchaiya Un-Nooh, ranked 61st in the world and went down without a whimper, 4-0 in the best-of-7 frames wild card pre-tournament qualifying match on Tuesday morning. The 29-year-old Thai cueist had breaks of 64 in the second and followed it up with an unfinished century effort of 101 in the third before signing off with a run of 69 in the fourth to wrap the issue at 92-9, 101-15, 101-23, 77-8 in a little under 45 minutes. The Thai player now runs in to top seed and defending champion Ding Junhui, ranked 4th in the world in the first round of the main draw.

    Later in the day, the 32-year-old Damani showed promise at the start against England’s Sam Baird by comfortably grabbing the first frame. But, thereafter his game went to pieces and the 26-year-old Baird cashed in on the chances to win the next four on the trot to close out the match at 4-1 (4-71, 57-26, 67-27, 129-1, 68-31). Baird, who had two decent breaks of 69 and 50 in the fourth frames, has now qualified for the main tournament and will take on 35th ranked Rod Lawler of England in the first round.

    The 32-year-old Talwar, like his countryman Kumar also failed to put up a fight and was comprehensively beaten 4-0 by 25-year-old Adam Duffy of England.

    In the most exciting and absorbing match of the day, 26th ranked Ben Woollaston of England held his nerves in the crucial deciding frame to nose out China’s 51st ranked Yu Delu by a tight 4-3 margin. After the two shared the opening six frames the Chinese seized the initiative in the seventh with a well constructed break of 66 to be placed in a comfortable position. Woollaston won at 54-66, 24-90(59), 80-13, 65(41)-54, 0-89(72), 101(100)-16, 74-67(66).

    Meanwhile, two upsets were witnessed in the first round of the tournament proper. First, 45th ranked Jamie Jones of Wales, came up with an impressive showing to turn the tables on 20th ranked Liang Wenbo posting a come from behind 4-2 victory.

    Jones lost a tight first frame and was outplayed in the second as the Chinese compiled a neat run of 85 to take a 2-0 lead. The Welshman showed great resilience and first with small but useful breaks and later a neat run of 73 in the sixth helped him win the subsequent four frames to clinch a 50-54, 1-85, 74-47, 65-54, 74-31 and 81-0 triumph and a passage to a second round meeting with 43rd ranked Englishman Gerard Greenie who also got past a higher ranked opponent in 32nd ranked Welshman Mathew Stevens. In a match of fluctuating fortunes Greenie came through at 4-2 (8-88, 71-42, 90(69)-0, 62-23, 37-61, 70(48)-14).

    The results:

    Wild card qualifier: Thepchaiya Un-Nooh (Thailand) bt Neeraj Kumar (India) 4-0 (92-9, 101(64)-15, 101(101)-23, 77-8).

    Sam Baird (England) bt Brijesh Damani (India) 4-1 (4-71, 57-26, 67-27, 129-1, 68-31).

    Adam Duffy (England) bt Sumit Talwar (India) 4-0 (51-15, 63-53, 71-32, 71-45).

    Lyu Haotian (China) bt Dharmendra Lily (India) 4-3 (23-75, 21-66, 81(79)-23, 22-47, 74(49)-11, 70(56)-23, 64-49).

    Main draw (round-I): Jamie Jones (Wales) bt Liang Wenbo (China) 4-2 (50(49)-54(41), 1-85(85), 74-47, 65-54, 74-31, 81-0).

    Gerad Greenie (England) bt Mathew Stevens (Wales) 4-2 (8-88, 71-42, 90(69)-0, 62-23, 37-61, 70(48)-14).

    Ben Woollaston (England) bt Yu Delu (China) 4-3 (54-66, 24-90(59), 80-13, 65(41)-54, 0-89(72), 101(100)-16, 74-67(66).


    State Guv inaugurates Indian Open Snooker

    Mumbai, March 8: The Honourable Governor of Maharashtra, Ch Vidyasagar Rao inaugurated the 2nd edition of the Indian Open Snooker World Ranking Tournament at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, Kalina on Monday. Also present on the occasion was Shri S.S. Mundra, Deputy Governor of Reserve Bank of India.

    Governor Rao in his address lauded the efforts of the BSFI (Billiards & Snooker Federation of India) for conducting a world ranking tournament in India. “I congratulate the BSFI for holding the Indian Open and I wish them all the best for the success of the tournament,” he said.

    The Governor requested BSFI to promote cue sports at the grassroots and at the university level.

    The Governor also released a souvenir before declaring the tournament open.

    Jason Ferguson, Chairman, WPBSA said that it’s great that cue sport, which originated in India is receiving such great support from people like Capt. Mohan. India is truly now a global hub for cue sports.

    BSFI President Capt Mohan while thanking the sponsors and the world leading players announced that two professional leagues would soon be launched in India. He also said that the BSFI is making efforts to take the sports to schools, colleges and universities to promote the sport at the grassroot level.


    Advani hopes to quickly adjust to fast tables

    Mumbai, March 8

    National champion Pankaj Advani is hoping to quickly adjust to the Star tables that will be utilised during the 2nd edition of the Indian Open Snooker World Ranking Tournament, organised by the Billiards & Snooker Federation of India is to be played at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, Mumbai from March 10 to 14, 2015.

    The 29-year-old Advani pointed out that these tables are completely different as compared to the ones on which the Nationals and other major tournaments are organised in the country. “The Star tables, which are used on the professional tour, are very quick and we have to get used to playing on these tables,” mentioned Advani, who further stated that since the past two weeks he has been preparing for the event.

    “I had a hit at the tables this afternoon and hope that in the next two days we get used to the tables. The surface is very fast and sensitive and you have to play with a soft touch because the cue ball tends to skid a lot. Getting used to the tables is paramount as we will be able to know our limitations and decide exactly what shots are possible,” said Advani, who is a multiple World Champion in both billiards and snooker.

    The Bengaluru-based Advani, who had reached the semi-finals last year in New Delhi and lost to compatriot Aditya Mehta, belives that he has the experience of doing well. “I had a stint playing on the professional snooker circuit for two years and think that would help him to do well here in Mumbai,” he said.

    Advani takes on Welshman Rhys Clark in the pre-tournament wild card qualifiers on the first day of the event and a win will help to qualify for the 64-player main draw.

    “I have not played against Rhys before but he’s a much-improved player now and has wins over some top professionals,” said Advani.

    The Indian cueists, also does not have any big expectations from the tournament and is keen to enjoy playing in the competition. “I don’t have any big expectations. All the Indian wild carders participating in the event will be playing freely and without any pressure. So it would all depend on how we perform in the first match,” he said.

    Dharmender Lily, Brijesh Damani, Sumeet Talwar, Neeraj Kumar and Faisal khan are the other wild card recipients who all need to win one match to enter the main draw.


     

     

    World’s best cueists for Indian Open Snooker

    Mumbai, March 7: The world’s leading exponents of snooker will assemble in the commercial capital of India, Mumbai, to participate in the second edition of the 300,000 pounds prize money Indian Open Snooker World Ranking Tournament – 2015, which will be organised by the Billiards and Snooker Federation of India (BSFI) at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, Kalina from March 10 to 14, 2015.

    BSFI President, Capt. P.V.K. Mohan, made this announcement at a Press Conference held at the Grand Hyatt on Saturday. Also present on the occasion was Tournament Director, Mike Ganley from England, S. Balasubramaniam, Secretary General, BSFI and Devendra Joshi, a former Asian billiards champion, world billiards runner-up and Arjuna Awardee.

    Speaking on the occasion, Capt.Mohan said: “We are indeed very happy and thrilled to be here in Mumbai for the second edition of the Indian Open Snooker World Ranking Tournament. The first event held in New Delhi in October 2013 was a stupendous success and we hope that this event will be even better. We chose Mumbai as the host city, because this sport is very popular in the city of Mumbai and in the state of Maharashtra.”

    Capt Mohan also mentioned that the event will be hosted by different cities across the country. “The BSFI feels that this tournament has to move around the country. The Indian Open is an annual affair and it will be hosted by different cities in India. Next year we will take the event to Chennai and later to other parts of the country,” stated Capt. Mohan, who is also the President of the International Billiards and Snooker Federation.

    The BSFI was also happy that many of last year’s sponsors are once again backing the tournament. “With the kind of support we had received last year from the sponsors and the kind of performance that the federation has been able to dish out we have got several repeat sponsors which I feel is a testimony of our commitment to the game. Once we show this kind of commitment I feel that this sport can only grow from here,” said the President.

    The top 64 players in the world have qualified for this tournament having participated in the qualifiers in Barnsley Metrodome, Barnsley, England last month. Last year’s winner Ding Junhui of China, who is currently the world number one will be here to defend his title. Last year’s runner-up Aditya Mehta of India, has also qualified for the main draw. The 27-year-old Chinese defeated England’s Barry Pinches 4-1 and the 29-year-old Mumbai cueist Mehta, the only Indian who has a Tour Card, blanked Hammad Miah also of England 4-0 to secure their places in the tournament proper.

    India’s most celebrated cueist, Pankaj Advani, a multiple world champion in both snooker and billiards, along with five other Indians will participate in the pre-tournament wild card qualifying round. Besides Advani, Neeraj Kumar, Brijesh Damani, Dharmendra Lilly, Sumit Talwar and Faisal Khan, all having won wild cards during the Indian qualifying legs, will pit their skill against six other players from England, Scotland, China and Thailand. The winners will earn berths in the 64-player main draw.

    Some of the big guns who will work their magic on the green baize during the tournament, include John Higgins of Scotland, Mark Williams from Wales, Ken Doherty from Ireland and Englishmen Judd Trump and Peter Ebdon, to name a few.

    This year the field has a strong Asian challenge with 11 players from the continent, including Ding and Aditya, having qualified for the main draw.

    Englishman Mike Ganley has been appointed as the Tournament Director and he will be assisted by 14 official referees, 10 of which are from India.

    The initial round matches will be played simultaneously on four tables.

    The Indian Open Snooker will be officially inaugurated by the Honourable Governor of Maharashtra, Ch Vidyasagar Rao on Monday, March 9. Guest of Honour, Shri S.S. Mundra, Deputy Governor of Reserve Bank of India, will also grace the occasion during the opening ceremony.

    Format: The tournament will be played on a knockout basis and all matches up to and including semi-finals will be of best-of-7 frames (no intervals) and the final will be played over best-of-9 frames.

    From Tuesday, March 10 to Saturday March 14, matches will be played on a roll on roll with the exception of the TV table which will not start before the time indicated on the format.  Table numbers will be determined the day before and published by the TD.  The TD reserves the right to reschedule any match.

    Prize money break-up:

    Winner: 50,000 pounds.

    Runner-up: 25,000 pounds.

    Losing semi-finalists (x2): 13,500 pounds each.

    Losing quarter-finalists (x4): 9,000 pounds each.

    Round 3 losers (x8): 6,000 pounds each.

    Round 2 losers (x16): 3,000 pounds each.

    Round 1 losers (x32): 2,000 pounds each