Ashgabat: Indian cueist Sourav Kothari exhibited a show of determination and resilience as he clinched the gold medal at the Asian Indoor Games after seeing off a tough competition from Thailand’s Praprut Chaitanasakun to win the first medal in cuesports in the competition this year.
Praprut, who needed just 20 points to win the game made a last minute error which was capitalised upon by Kothari, who held his nerve in the big final and came back to win the first frame by 100-80 points.
Thus, already having made a wonderful start to the match, he continued with his dominance in the second game as Praprut offered opportunities for the Indian to take control over the match.
The 32-year-old also made full use of the chances he got to build an unfinished break of 101 points and win the second game as well. Thus, Kothari had things well under his control with a 2-0 lead in the high pressure game.
But the third game saw the former World Champion from Thailand make a comeback as Kothari looked to be under pressure when he neared the finishing line.
The Indian also missed a regular cannon which was capitalised by Praprut who then constructed a break of 57 points and pocketed the third game 101-29.
However, both of them missed a couple of openings in the fourth game as Praprut was on his way in constructing yet another break as Kothari looked to be under pressure.
Praprut, who had 88 points, and was on a break of 73, needed just 12 points more to take the match to the sudden death decider, but ended up providing an opportunity to Kothari, who accepted it with both hands.
From a position where Praprut was just a few shots away from a win in the fourth game, Kothari, who required 89 points for a victory showed nerves of steel and calmly dealt with the pressure to build a break of 89 points and won the frame 101-88, amidst some loud cheering from the crowd.