Alok Kumar kicked off the defence of his senior billiards title with a comfortable 102-75, 100-27, 101-50 win over Ustav Ramani in a 100-up best-of-five frames group stage encounter, at the Hash10-World Sim Nationals, here on Tuesday.

 Other big guns, including Pankaj Advani, Geet Sethi, Sourav Kothari, Rupesh Shah, Ashok Shandilya and Dhurv Sitawala also got off to winning starts in the senior billiards division.

 Advani knocked in breaks of 48 and 57 in the first and second frames respectively, in his 3-0 defeat of M.S. Reddy. The first frame of the Kothari-Kankan Shamsi Group E contest saw both cueists break big. Kothari's break of 53 was answered by Shamsi's 58, but the latter eventually lost out in three tightly contested frames.

Big winners

Rupesh Shah and Aditya Agarwal were other big winners from the same group, with Shah registering breaks of 83 and 90 (unfinished) in his 3-0 hammering of Shivam Arora. Ashok Shandilya didn't take long in seeing off Amit Sharma 3-0 in the Group F match-up.  

In the junior boys' snooker category, Lalrina Renthlei, M.L. Lakshman, Himanshu Jain and Mundir Sherazi navigated through four knock-out rounds to make it to the semifinal league, the topper of which will be crowned the champion on Wednesday.

The results:

Men's billiards (group stage): Best-of-five frames, 100-up: Group A: Prem Prakash (TN) bt I.V. Rajiv (AP) 100-19, 102-70, 98-100, 92-101, 101-21; Vishal Madan (Mah) bt Jai Shankar (Jha) 101-24, 101-26, 103-88); Pankaj Advani (PSPB) bt M.S. Reddy (Rly) 102-43, 100-31, 100-94.

Group B: S. Simhachallam (Rly) bt Nitin Kohli (UP) 100-9, 100-35, 99-100, 100-75; Shankar Rao (AP) bt Anushal Mittal (Har) 100-59, 101-12, 101-43; Alok Kumar (PSPB) bt Ustav Ramani (Guj) 102-75, 100-27, 101-50.

Group C: Geet Sethi (Guj) bt Siddharth Pariekh (Rly) 100-83, 102-43, 53-101, 101-63, 101-11; Rajkumar (Kar) bt Sankeeth Saurabh (Bih) 101-17, 101-69, 100-76; Ketan Chawla (MP) bt Bhuvaneshwaran (TN) 100-95, 102-43, 101-72.

Group D: Dhurv Sitawala (PSPB) bt Abhineet Sharma (MP) 100-48, 100-51, 101-6, Subrat Das (Ori) bt Akram Khan (WB) 100-55, 101-92, 64-101, 101-85, Arun Agarwal (Mah) bt Arif Akthar (Chn) 102-77, 62-101, 102-77, 101-63.

Group E: Sourav Kothari (PSPB) bt Kankan Shamsi (UP) 101-80, 102-67, 100-76, Rupesh Shah (PSPB) bt Sivam Arora (Bih) 101-3, 100-69, 101-63, Aditya Agarwal (Rly) bt Abhishek Saini (Har) 101-0, 101-20, 101-35.

Group F: Ashok Shandilya (Rly) bt Amit Sharma (Del) 101-12, 101-75, 100-56.

 Qualifiers for the main draw: Mahesh Jadale (Mah), M.C. Manoj (TN), Aditya Aggarwal (Rly), Manish Jain (WB), Siddarth Pariekh (Rly).

Junior boys snooker: Road to the semifinal league (best-of-five frames): Lalrina Renthlei (Miz): R1: bye, R2: bt Mark Menezes (UP) 3-2, R3: bt Lalith Dahiya (Del) 3-1, R4: bt Dhuvaj Haria (Guj) 3-0.

M.L. Lakshmanan (Kar): R1: bt Nikhil Pise (Kar) 3-2, R2: bt Manav Yadav (Asm) 3-1, R3: bt Diman Bora (Asm) 3-1, R4: Peter Paul (TN) 3-2.

Himanshu Jain (AP): R1: bye, R2: Nitin Sharma (J&K) 3-1, R3: Sunny Jadwani 3-0, R4: Laxman Rawat (Del) 3-0.

Mundir Sherzai (Kar): R1: bye, R2: Anmol Deepsingh (Pun): 3-2, R3: Sahil Nayyar (Pun) 3-0, R4: Ustav Ramani (Guj) 3-0.