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03-02-2005, 03:27 PM
SNOOKER EMBASSY WORLD

Wattana just one step away from World Championship finals

TOR CHITTINAND

Thailand's James Wattana, twice a semi-finalist at the Crucible, booked his place in the final qualifying round of the Embassy World Championship with a 10-8 defeat of Rory McLeod at Pontins Snooker Centre in England.

In the first session, Wattana started off not well when McLeod led 4-2 before he came back and swift the next three frames to finish the game with a 5-4 frames lead.

After the break, Wattana still on his control of the match and he made a century break of 138 points to made it 9-5 frames lead. However, McLeod did not give up easily when he took the next three frames and came to 9-8 but Wattana then finally took the 18th frame with a 10-8 frame victory over McLeod. In the next round, Wattana will meet Alister Carter for the right to play in the Embassy World Championship.

The deputy president of the Billiard Sport Association, Mr Sakda Rattanasuban said this victory shows that Wattana's form is coming back.

``To play with the long game, he looks more confident and could made a century break,'' said Sakda.

He has good chance of reaching the final Embassy World Championship but he has to beat Alister Carter in the next qualifying round.

If he beats Carter then he will reach the final of the Embassy World Championship.

Wattana and Carter will play on March 24 for the best of 19 frames.

web page (http://www.bangkokpost.com/Sports/03Mar2005_sport36.php)