Imran dethrone Sajjad to enter National Snooker

Pakistan number one Imran Shehzad lived upto his billing when he dethroned Asian number two Muhammad Sajjad 6-2 to enter the final of the 36th NJI National Snooker Championship at Karachi Gymkhana Billiards Hall here on Wednesday.

In Thursday’s best of 15-frame final, Imran Shehzad will take on the winner of the ongoing second semifinal between Muhammad Shahid and Sultan Muhammad for the title.

Diminutive Lahore-based Imran carved out the breaks of 56, 54, 65 to chalk out an easy win over his Punjab province-mate Sajjad.

Sargodha-based Sajjad, who finished runner-up in last year’s Asian championship in Thailand smashed a break of 70 in third frame and won the fifth frame but failed to prove any threat for Imran Shehzad.

Imran, who with Sajjad and Sohail Shehzad represented Pakistan in IBSF World Snooker Championship in Damascus (Syria) last December dominated the final with his superb potting, tactical positional play and lovely cue control.

Smart Imran got off a confident start by grabbing the first two frames. But seasoned Sajjad blanked Imran in the third frame to make it 2-1. Imran increased his lead to 3-1 before Sajjad again made it 3-2.

Afterwards Imran kept Sajjad under pressure by smartly and intelligently sinking of the multicolored balls. He seized three frames in a row to storm into the final. Scores: Imran Shahzad (Pjb) bt Muhammad Sajjad (Pjb) 6-2 (78-06, 85-46, 0-80, 72-48, 16-88, 62-17, 75-21, 63-24.