Veteran Yasin Merchant out-thought and outplayed young Aditya Mehta for a 6-1 win in the final of the Alumni Club All-India invitational snooker tournament in Chennai on Sunday.
Bringing into play his vast experience, the 43-year-old Merchant, twice Asian champion, kept the 24-year-old Mehta on a tight leash with accurate safety play and won quite comfortably.
Mehta, winner of two tournaments in the city over the past few months, could not reproduce his best when it mattered and went down tamely.
In almost every frame, Mehta had early leads, but each time he missed sitters and Merchant was quick to punish these lapses by putting together frame-winning breaks.
That the match saw only two half-century breaks, a 55 by Merchant in the second frame and 54 by Mehta in the sixth, reflected the flow of the match that saw a lot of safety play.
Overall, it was a rather scrappy end to a tournament that did not witness even one century break despite the presence of country's top players among whom Geet Sethi took the highest break prize for his run of 96.
Merchant received a winner's cheque for Rs 1 lakh while Mehta was richer by Rs 50,000.
"Aditya is the sort of player who if given freedom, will run away with the match. So, I had to keep it tight. He did not play well today, but if he was in top form, then I am sure he would have come out on top," sad Merchant, ever the graceful winner.
On his part, Mehta said: "I was nowhere near my best today and committed far too many mistakes. It is not that Yasin played especially well, but whatever he did, he made it count. I think, he deserved to win today."
The results (final):
Yasin Merchant (Mah) bt Aditya Mehta (PSPB) 6-1 (86-51, 55-20, 73-40, 59-39, 75-34, 01-84, 54-17).