Shahbaz Adil Khan eliminated five-time champion Pankaj Advani from the Manisha 79th National snooker championships on Thursday.

Regarded as a youngster with potential to join the big league of green baize sport, the former National junior champion had the privilege of being the only player to enter the pre-quarterfinal without dropping a frame in four league matches and one knockout match.

After a near two-and-a-half hour tussle with the multiple World and National champion, he emerged triumphant, notching up his sixth straight win.

“I had beaten him (Advani) two years ago at the MIG Invitation in Mumbai. This was my second win over him,” said the giant killer. Shahbaz will run into Andhra Pradesh junior Himanshu Jain in the quarterfinal. The other quarterfinals will be between Aditya Mehta and Siddharth Parikh, Brijesh Damani and Manan Chandra and Lucky Vatnani and Kamal Chawla.

Advani feels pressure

After Shahbaz had taken the first and third frames with modest efforts, Advani, who had registered a facile 4-0 win over Devendra Joshi in the first round, began to feel the pressure.

He won a second frame (fourth of the match) with a match-high break of 65, but left the table with clear chances, in the fifth and sixth frames, for his opponent to garner valuable points.

Advani was helpless and tried his best to extract two foul shots in the sixth in order to remain in the match, but in the end Shahbaz cleared the colours to score a memorable win.

Last August at Chennai, Shahbaz had failed to make the round of 32.

Meanwhile, Kamal Chawla held his nerve to get the better of last year's runner-up Alok Kumar as Manan Chandra rifled a second century break to outsmart Sourav Kothari.

The results:

Pre-quarterfinals (set to 7 frames): Aditya Mehta (PSPB) bt Sarang Shroff (Mah) 4-0 [71-1, 60(50)-49, 70-50, 78(51)-0]; Siddharth Parikh (RSPB) bt Pulkit Thukral (Del) 4-1 [68-10, 54-66, 73-49, 71-40, 88-34]; Shahbaz Adil Khan (RSPB) bt Pankaj Advani (PSPB) 4-2 [75-29, 48-60, 68(61)-37, 29-104(65), 70-23, 83-43]; Himanshu Jain (AP) bt Shivam Arora (Bihar) 4-3 [25-69, 55-26, 82-46, 23-74, 17-63, 63-59, 65-54].

Brijesh Damani (WB) bt Vijay Nichani (TN) 4-1 [71-57, 88(60)-10,15-63, 76(49)-15, 78-27]; Lucky Vatnani (AP) bt I.V. Rajiv (AP) 4-1 [53-50, 65(52)-6, 39-69, 74-18, 62-50]; Kamal Chawla (RSPB) bt Alok Kumar (PSPB) 4-3 [66-41, 29-90(89), 62-72, 64-62, 16-68, 56-27, 115(98)-17]; Manan Chandra (PSPB) bt Sourav Kothari (PSPB) 4-2 [46-60, 139(139)-0, 74(42)-18, 64(42)-33, 0-74(74), 61-47].

Round of 32: Aditya Mehta bt Neeraj Kumar (RSPB) 4-1 [77-33, 13-46, 80(69)-21, 94-25, 93(41)-24]; Pankaj Advani bt Devendra Joshi (PSPB) 4-0 [50-36, 80-39, 62-42, 76-22]; Shahbaz Adil Khan bt Divya Sharma (Har) 4-0 [76-51, 63-10, 67-47, 61-51]; Himanshu Jain (AP) bt R. Girish (RSPB) 4-1 [63-40, 67-27, 51-38, 52-68, 68-7]; Pulkit Thukral (Del) bt Lalrina Renthlei (Miz) 4-2 [50-82, 68(52)-51, 100(73)-1, 78-16, 42-56, 58-34]; Siddhath Parikh bt Rupesh Shah (PSPB) 4-1 [55-45, 98(67)-17, 25-67, 67-37, 76-36].

Sarang Shroff bt Rafat Habib (RSPB) 4-3 [18-67, 72-41, 69-25, 36-65, 58-13, 20-84, 65-49]; Shivam Arora (Bih) bt Sumit Talwar (Chd) 4-3 [0-117(60, 52), 13-82, 33-81, 73-0, 67(53)-1, 59-42, 60-52].

Alok Kumar bt Sunil Kumar (HP) 4-0 [64-32, 66-45, 66-17, 104-4]; Manan Chandra bt Rajat Khaneja (Chd) 4-0 [47-35, 73-9, 76-27, 60-10]; Sourav Kothari bt Yogesh Kumar (Kar) 4-3 [35-51, 65(53)-8, 48-61, 65-21, 55-73, 61-11, 84(46)-17]; Brijesh Damani bt Dhvaj Haria (Guj) 4-1 [88-8, 3-66, 99-9, 59-38, 80-38].

Vijay Nichani bt Durga Prasad (RSPB) 4-1 [85(55)-2, 72-81, 54-42, 73-13, 68-15]; I.V. Rajiv (AP) bt Rovin D'Souza (Mah) 4-0 [61-45, 82-8, 65-58, 83-6]; Lucky Vatnani bt Shankar Rao (AP) 4-0 [73(52)-7, 62-51, 67-14, 48-16]; Kamal Chawla bt Sandeep Gulati (Del) 4-2 [56-60, 69-30, 72(71)-1, 15-61, 58-48, 103(90) -1].

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