पंकज आडवाणी (जन्म 24 जुलाई, 1985)

July 24, 2017

पंकज आडवाणी (जन्म 24 जुलाई, 1985 पुणे) स्नूकर और बिलियर्ड्स के विश्व विजेता भारतीय खिलाड़ी हैं। पंकज आडवाणी अब तक कुल आठ विश्व ख़िताब जीत चुके हैं। पंकज ने पहला पेशेवर बिलियर्ड्स विश्व ख़िताब 2009 में जीता था। इससे पहले वह एमेच्योर विश्व बिलियर्ड्स और स्नूकर चैंपियनशिप जीत चुके थे। पंकज ने 2006 में दोहा में हुए एशियाई खेलों में स्वर्ण पदक जीता था।


जीवन परिचय
24 जुलाई, 1985 को पुणे में जन्मे पंकज ने कुवैत में अपने माता पिता (अर्जन एवं काजल) और बड़े भाई श्री के साथ अपने जीवन के पहले पांच साल बिताए। इनका परिवार ईराक पर आक्रमण के बाद बंगलौर आ गया। पंकज और श्री ने फ्रैंक एंथोनी पब्लिक स्कूल, बंगलौर में अध्ययन किया। बालक पंकज ने दस साल की उम्र में अपने भाई श्री शिष्टाचार के साथ स्नूकर पार्लर गया और घर के क़रीब हर दिन स्कूल के बाद श्री के साथ स्नूकर पार्लर गया।


अंतर्राष्ट्रीय खेल उपलब्धियाँ
आईबीएसएफ़ विश्व बिलियर्ड्स ख़िताब 2012
एशियन विश्व बिलियर्ड्स ख़िताब (पाँच बार) 2012, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2005
पेशेवर विश्व बिलियर्ड्स चैम्पियनशिप ख़िताब 2009
आईबीएसएफ़ विश्व बिलियर्ड्स ख़िताब[1] (तीन बार) 2008, 2007, 2005
आईबीएसएफ़ विश्व बिलियर्ड्स ख़िताब[2] (दो बार) 2008, 2005
आईबीएसएफ़ विश्व स्नूकर ख़िताब 2003
स्वर्ण पदक एशियाई खेल ग्वांगझोउ (एकल स्पर्धा) 2010
स्वर्ण पदक एशियाई खेल दोहा (एकल स्पर्धा) 2006
ऑस्ट्रेलियन ओपन बिलियर्ड्स ख़िताब 2008


सम्मान और पुरस्कार
पद्म श्री (2009)
राजीव गांधी खेल रत्न (2006)
अर्जुन पुरस्कार (2004)


Pankaj Arjan Advani (born 24 July 1985 in Pune) is an English billiards and former snooker player from India. He is a 19-time World Champion and has achieved a hat-trick of hat-tricks in English billiards, holding the World, Asian, and Indian National Championship titles simultaneously, in three different years: 2005, 2008 and 2012 and recently in 2017.


He became a snooker professional in 2012, and his first season on the main tour was the 2012/2013 season. Advani won the 2014 IBSF World 6-Red Snooker Championship, on his debut in that discipline. As such he is currently the only player ever to win world titles in both the long and short formats of snooker (15-red standard, and 6-red) and both formats of English billiards (time and point). Advani is also India's first world champion in 6-red snooker. Since 2014, Advani has focused solely on English billiards.


In recognition of his achievements, the Government of India has bestowed several awards upon Advani: the Arjuna Award in 2004, Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna in 2006, Padma Shri in 2009 and Padma Bhushan in 2018.


Pankaj Advani was born on 24 July 1985 in Pune, India. Advani spent his initial years in Kuwait before moving to Bangalore, India. He received his education at the Frank Anthony Public School, Bangalore and completed his bachelor's degree in Commerce from Sri Bhagawan Mahaveer Jain College. He received training in snooker from former national Snooker champion Arvind Savur.


At the age of 10 his acumen for snooker came to the notice of Arvind Savur after being introduced to the sport by his elder brother Dr. Shree Advani, a noted Sport & Performance Psychologist. He won his first ever title at the age of 12 and went on to set several records at the state and national levels. In the year 2000 he won his first Indian Junior Billiards Championship title and then went on to win it again in 2001 and 2003. In 2003 he won the India Junior Snooker Championship which made him the youngest National Snooker champion.


Pankaj Advani was born on 24 July 1985 in Pune, India. Advani spent his initial years in Kuwait before moving to Bangalore, India. He received his education at the Frank Anthony Public School, Bangalore and completed his bachelor's degree in Commerce from Sri Bhagawan Mahaveer Jain College. He received training in snooker from former national Snooker champion Arvind Savur.


At the age of 10 his acumen for snooker came to the notice of Arvind Savur after being introduced to the sport by his elder brother Dr. Shree Advani, a noted Sport & Performance Psychologist. He won his first ever title at the age of 12 and went on to set several records at the state and national levels. In the year 2000 he won his first Indian Junior Billiards Championship title and then went on to win it again in 2001 and 2003. In 2003 he won the India Junior Snooker Championship which made him the youngest National Snooker champion.


Billiards career
Advani made his international competitive debut at the Asian Billiards Championship 2002, held at Bangalore, in which he finished as a finalist. After an amateur World Snooker Champion title win in 2003, he won the IBSF World Billiards Championship in 2005 at Qawra, Malta, where he became the first to achieve a "grand double" by winning both the time and point formats,[2] a feat he repeated at the 2008 event in Bangalore. He is the only Indian to have won the amateur world title in both snooker and billiards.


He is also the youngest person to have won all these world titles in English billiards, for a record 8 times. Advani also remains the only person to have won all five national, regional, and world billiards tournaments in a single season, a feat he achieved by winning the Indian Junior National Championship and Senior National Championship, the Asian Billiards Championship, and both the World Billiards Championship (point format) and World Billiards Championship (time format).


Advani won the WPBSA billiards title, at Leeds in 2009, against the defending champion Mike Russell; Advani won 2030–1253, after gaining an 800-plus lead at his opening break. He became the first person in the world to win the trio of the WPBSA World Billiards Champion pro title (which he has held twice, in 2009 & 2012), and the IBSF World Billiards Champion amateur title, as well as the IBSM World Snooker Champion amateur title.


In April 2012, Advani won the Asian Billiards Championship in Goa, India[5] to become the first player to win 5 Asian Billiards Champion titles. This takes his total tally of international majors to 17 – 8 Worlds, 5 Asian Billiards, 2 Asian Games Golds, 1 Australian Open and 1 Asian Team. It was announced in May that Advani had accepted the Indian wildcard place on the main snooker tour for the 2012/2013 season.[6]


In October 2012, in Leeds, England, Advani won his seventh (counting professional and amateur) World Billiards Championship title, eighth world title overall, beating defending and nine-time WPBSA World Billiards Champion Mike Russell again, in the timed division final (Advani did not make it to the points division final).


On 14 August 2014, Advani helped win the first ever World Team Billiards Championship held in Glasgow, Scotland, along with Rupesh Shan, Devendra Joshi and Ashok Shandilya.


On 2nd February 2017, Pankaj Advani won his 29th National Championship Title at the PYC Hindu Gymkhana in Pune, India. This gave him a 39 match-winning streak. Overall, as of 2017 Advani had won 60 titles: 19 world titles; 8 Asian titles; 2 Asian Games titles; 1 Australian Open title and 30 national titles.


Snooker career
Pankaj Advani, on international competitive debut in the discipline, won the IBSF World Snooker Championship (i.e. the World Amateur Snooker Championship) on 25 October 2003 in Jiangmen, China. He was 18 years old, and became the youngest Indian to win the title, his first world title. A decade later, as a 28-year-old, at the IBSF World 6-Red World Snooker Championship in Sharm-El-Sheik, Egypt, he won one of the amateur world titles (on debut in the short format).


As a new player on the tour, Advani would need to win four matches to reach the main stage of the ranking events. He did this in just his fourth attempt, when qualifying for the International Championship. He defeated Craig Steadman 6–1, six-time world champion Steve Davis 6–5 (after being 1–4 down), Alan McManus 6–3 and Michael Holt 6–4 to reach the venue stage for the first time.He made four century breaks during qualification, the most of any player. Advani was to play a wildcard match once at the tournament in Chengdu, China, to reach the last 32, however he decided to withdraw from the tournament to take part in the World Billiards Championship, which he went on to win. He also reached the semi-finals of the minor ranking European Tour Event 1, beating four-time world champion John Higgins 4–1 along the way. Advani lost to Mark Selby 2–4. Advani played in eight of the ten of these Players Tour Championship events and finished 40th on the Order of Merit.


At the 2013 Welsh Open, he became the first Indian player to reach the quarter-final stage of a ranking event with a 4–1 win over Graeme Dott in the last 16, but lost 2–5 to Judd Trump. Advani's season ended when he was beaten 8–10 by Joe Swail in the first round of World Championship Qualifying. He was ranked world number 74 after his first year on the main snooker tour.


The 2013/2014 season saw the introduction of a ranking event in Advani's home country of India for the first time which he qualified for by beating Matthew Selt 4–0.At the tournament in New Delhi Advani defeated Marcus Campbell 4–1 and Mark Allen 4–2. His match with Allen finished at 11 pm local time, with Advani back in last 16 action at 10 am the next morning to play Stuart Bingham. The match went to a deciding frame and when Bingham broke down on a break of 30, Advani stepped in to compose a match winning 86. Advani played compatriot Aditya Mehta in the quarter-finals in an iconic match in Indian snooker as the winner would be the country's first ranking event semi-finalist.[18] The match was heavily focused on safety and it was Mehta who advanced with a 4–3 win.[19] His best run in a ranking event during the rest of the season was at the World Open, where he narrowly beat Xiao Guodong 5–4 to set up a last 32 meeting with Ding Junhui. Advani had a lead of 4–2 in the best of nine frame match and was 35 points to 0 ahead in the seventh frame to be on the cusp of a shock result against the player who had already won four ranking events this season. However, Ding made a break of 52 to win the frame, compiled a 136 to draw level and won the deciding frame in one visit to defeat Advani.Advani's successful season saw him finish inside the top 64 in the world rankings for the first time as he was placed 56th.


Awards and honours
Padma Bhushan, India's third highest civilian honour, 2018
Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, India's highest sporting honour, 2005–06
Rajyotsava Award, Karnataka's highest civilian award, 2007.
Karnataka's 'Kempegowda Award" in 2007.
Ekalavya Award in 2007
Vision of India's "International Indian" Award in 2005.
Senior Sportsperson of the Year 2005
The Sports Writers' Association of Bangalore
The Bangalore University Sportsperson of the Year, 2005
The Hero India Sports Award (HISA) in 2004
The Rajeev Gandhi Award in 2004
The Arjuna Award in 2004
The Indo-American Young Achiever's Award – 2003
The Sports Star Sportsperson of the Year 2003.