Duncan goes undefeated on Q City 9-Ball Tour, splits top prizes with Burke
Skip Maloney - AzB Staff
Sep. 28, 2016
As the two presidential candidates banter back and forth about their stamina (or lack, thereof), pool players have to be thinking that if that's a significant qualification, they should be up there trading thoughts with the candidates. The grind of a weekend tournament, or a single-day tournament that ends up racing the dawn are common on the pool circuit, and often, when it comes down to a final that could well be lit by natural daylight, the two opponents figure that the prize differential between the top two cash amounts is not significant enough to warrant playing that final game. So it was, on Saturday, September 24, when Justin Duncan and Greg Burke, after a full day, opted out of their final match on the Viking Cues' Q-City 9-Ball Tour. Having defeated Burke once, and sitting in the hot seat, Duncan claimed the official title, as 3 a.m. loomed on the event horizon. The $500-added event drew 39 entrants to Legends Billiards in Inman, SC.
 
They met first in a winners' side semifinal, when it was still Saturday. Aaron McClure, in the meantime, squared off against Kirk Hixon. Duncan downed Burke 5-3, and in the hot seat match faced McClure, who'd sent Hixon west 6-3. Duncan claimed the hot seat over McClure in a hard fought double hill battle, which proved to be his last.
 
On the loss side, Jim Jennings was doing his level best to get a shot against Duncan. An opening round bye was followed by a loss to Thomas Jones, at which point, Jennings went on a six-match, loss-side streak that would take him as far as the quarterfinals. Three matches in to that streak, he downEd Scott Ward 7-3, and then, wreaked his vengeance on Jones, defeating him 7-1, to draw Hixon. Burke drew Boyd Best, who'd won two straight double hill matches, against Steve Ellis and Romeo Malonzo, to reach him.
 
Jennings advanced to the quarterfinals with a 7-4 victory over Hixon. Burke joined him after allowing Best only a single rack in their matchup. Burke ended Jennings' streak in those quarterfinals, but not before Jennings forced a case game to decide it.
 
In what would prove to be the final match of the event, Burke downed McClure in the semifinals 7-2. Duncan and Burke opted out of the final, leaving the undefeated Duncan to claim the event title.
 
Tour director Herman Parker thanked Legends Billiards' co-owners Marty Opyd and April Bradley and their staff, as well as title sponsor Viking Cues, Delta-13 racks and Ruthless Billiards. The next stop on the Viking Cues' Q City 9-Ball Tour, scheduled for the weekend of October 1-2, will be hosted by Randolph's in Hickory, NC.