Asif storms into world snooker final

Updated November 09, 2019

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The 37-year-old Asif outplayed third seed Kritsanut Lertsattayathorn of Thailand 7-0 in best of 13 frames semi-final. — AFP/File
In this photograph taken on September 13, 2013 Pakistani snooker player Mohammad Asif plays at a snooker club in Faisalabad.  Rising sports stars regularly spout the cliche about not letting success change them, but in the case of Mohammad Asif, Pakistan's sole current world champion, it seems to be true. The 31-year-old was given a hero's welcome when he returned to Pakistan after winning the amateur world snooker championship a year ago, feted by politicians and me
The 37-year-old Asif outplayed third seed Kritsanut Lertsattayathorn of Thailand 7-0 in best of 13 frames semi-final. — AFP/File In this photograph taken on September 13, 2013 Pakistani snooker player Mohammad Asif plays at a snooker club in Faisalabad. Rising sports stars regularly spout the cliche about not letting success change them, but in the case of Mohammad Asif, Pakistan's sole current world champion, it seems to be true. The 31-year-old was given a hero's welcome when he returned to Pakistan after winning the amateur world snooker championship a year ago, feted by politicians and me

KARACHI: Keeping his unbeaten run intact, second seed and former world champion Mohammad Asif stepped into the final of the IBSF World Snooker Championships in the Turkish city of Antalya on Friday evening.

The 37-year-old Asif, who had reached the zenith with an imposing 10-8 victory over Englishman Gary Wilson in the final of the same competition in Bulgaria in 2012, completely outplayed third seed Kritsanut Lertsattayathorn of Thailand 7-0 in the best of 13 frames semi-final.

A native of Faisalabad, Asif won the duel 88-41, 65-20, 86-35, 54-2, 73-17, 69-51, 78-71 and will face the winner of second semi-final being played between top seed Pang Junxu of China and unseeded Jefry Roda of the Philippines on Saturday.

Former national champion Asif who reached the last-16 on Thursday, continued his impressive performance when he sent Australian James Mifsud packing 5-1 (96-50, 0-91, 109-7, 104-8, 60-43, 60-35) to win his third match on trot in the knockout round. The highlight of the triumph were two splendid century breaks of 108 and 103 in the third and fourth frames.

Not looking back, he crossed yet another hurdle by getting the better of seventh seed Thanawat Tirap­ong­baiboon of Thailand 6-4 with the scores being 20-73, 101-30, 42-89, 89-18, 66-60, 34-66, 65-8, 82-41, 61-75, 60-59. The victory revolves around a century break of 100 in the second besides 53, 66 and 51 in the fourth, fifth and seventh frames respectively.

Result:

Last-16 round: Mohammad Asif bt James Mifsud (Ausrtralia) 5-1 (96-50, 0-91, 109-7, 104-8, 60-43, 60-35).

Quarter-final: Mohammad Asif bt Thanawat Tirapongbaiboon (Thailand) 6-4 (20-73, 101-30, 42-89, 89-18, 66-60, 34-66, 65-8, 82-41, 61-75, 60-59).

Semi-final: Mohammad Asif bt Kritsanut Lertsattayathorn (Thailand) 7-0 (88-41, 65-20, 86-35, 54-2, 73-17, 69-51, 78-71).

Published in Dawn, November 9th, 2019