It was curtains for India in the World Billiards Championship, as ace cueists Geet Sethi and defending champion Pankaj Advani bowed out in the semi-finals of the time-format in Pune on Friday.
While Sethi went down 1022-1668 to England's Peter Gilchrist in the first semi-final, Advani lost 1300-1417 to another Englishman, Mike Russell, in the other last four stage match.
Gilchrist played a composed game of top table billiards, bringing his form to the fore at the right moment to beat the Indian in a four-hour battle at the PYC Hindu Gymkhana.
Sethi struggled to even cross the 200-mark, although there was a brief moment when he assumed the lead in the early part of the match. But it was just a flash in the pan.
Sethi was leading by 387 points when Gilchrist got the balls to roll to his liking and then went about assimilating a break that turned crucial at the end.
At the stroke of the two-hour mark, the Englishman was on an unfinished break of 597, which swelled his lead by 210 points, something Sethi would rue at the end.
In the second session, Gilchrist could not extend the break longer as the two-hour rest had taken the rhythm out of him and he ended with 610.
Sethi managed just four century breaks -- 135, 170, 103 and 143 -- at a stage when he was expected to pull out something inspiring.
The England-born, Singapore-based Gilchrist followed his 610 and 247 with yet another four-ton break, worth 454, that really ended Sehti's challenge as the time started ticking ominously.
In the other semi-final, Russell, who had beaten Advani in the points-format, again proved his nemesis.
The Englishman showed why he is known as 'The Greatest' post-World War cueist as he took a 650 points lead by the end of the two-hour period.
Russell had breaks of 62, 334, 186, 177, 125, 308, while Advani was left struggling with his cue and could manage breaks of 231, 255, 185, 317 and 81 to see his title defence in shambles.
Peter Gilchrist beat Geet Sethi 1668 (87, 610, 247, 67, 454, 57)-1022 (65, 135, 170, 103, 63, 143, 53).
Mike Russell beat Pankaj Advani 1417 (62, 334, 186, 177, 125, 308) - 1300 (231, 255, 185, 317, 81).