Considered as the best Indian all- rounder snooker and billiards player, Pankaj Arjan Advani is said to have won everything possible in his sport. Also called “The Prince of India” and “The Golden Boy”, Pankaj Advani has been felicitated with the Arjuna Award, Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna; India’s highest sporting honour and Padma Shri; India’s fourth highest civilian award in 2004, 2006 and 2009 respectively. For 3 long years; 2005-2008 Pankaj reigned as the World, Asian and National Champion in billiards. His career is full of firsts of their kind. He is for instance India’s first world champion in 6- Red Snooker, the first player in the world in winning both the point and time formats in the IBSF World Billiards Championship at Malta in 2005, the first player to win world titles in the long and shorter formats of snooker (15 red and 6 red) as well as billiards (time and point), the only Indian to win Men’s Australian Open Billiards Championship in Melbourne in 2008. Advani has also been honoured with the Indo- American Young Achiever’s Award in 2003, the Sports Star Sportsperson of the Year in 2003, the “Hero India Sports Award” in 2004, Vision of India’s “International Indian” Award in 2005, Senior Sportsperson of the Year in 2005, the Bangalore University “Sportsperson of the Year” in 2005, Karnataka’s “Kempegowda Award” in 2007 and “Rajyotsava Award”; Karnataka’s highest civilian award in 2007.
Starting his career by winning 27th BS Sampath Memorial Handicap Snooker Championship, T.A. Selvaraj Memorial Billiards Championship and Karnataka State Junior Snooker Championship in 1997 he is winning till date. He won the Karnataka State Junior Snooker Championship again in 1998 followed by Pot Shot All India Triangular Championship and Pot Shot Non- Medallist Championship in 1999, Indian Junior Billiards Championship in 2000, 2001, 2003 and 2005, Indian Junior Snooker Championship in 2003 and 2005, IBSF World Snooker Championship in 2003, WSA Challenge Tour in 2004 and 2005, Indian Billiards Championship, Asian Billiards Championship in 2005 and 2009, and IBSF World Billiards Championship in both time and points format in 2005. He repeated this time and point win once again in the IBSF World Billiards Championship in the year 2008. Pankaj Advani is the first and the only person ever to win the World Professional Billiards Championship. Advani also helped India gain its first gold medal in English Billiards Singles and he also holds the record of winning the Asian Billiards Championship 5 times and he is the only person who at the young age of 27 years has won 8 titles in the World Billiards Championship. Recently in 2014 Advani has set yet another world record in Egypt where at the World 6 Snooker Red Championship Advani won world titles in both billiards and snooker in all formats. The way Pankaj Advani sets records is unimaginable and he says that his winning secret lies in the fact of not trying too hard and going without expectations.
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