Chau wins his second of three Texas Open 10-Ball Championships
Skip Maloney - AzB Staff
Feb. 27, 2017
Manny Chau (Photo courtesy of PoolActiontv.com)
Manny Chau (Photo courtesy of PoolActiontv.com)
It's been something of a sandwich, the three Texas Open 10-Ball Championships that have occurred since 2015. It's been two slices of Manny Chau bread, with a slab of Skyler Woodward in the middle. Chau went undefeated through the 95-entrant Open field at the Third Annual Texas Open 10-Ball Championships, held on the weekend of February 16-19 at Skinny Bob Billiards in Round Rock, TX. Chau faced the defending champion (Woodward) in a winners' side semifinal and separate opponents in the battle for the hot seat (John Gabriel) and finals (Shane McMinn). In a concurrently-held, $500-added inaugural Ladies Tournament, Ricki Casper went undefeated through a field of 37 (separate story). Gail Eaton, who finished third in that event, picked up an extra $500 for being the top female finisher in the Open portion of the tournament.
 
After an opening round bye, Chau got by Jimmy Krone 7-2, and then defeated, in order, Robb Saez 7-4, Charlie Bryant 7-2, and Jon Demet 7-3 to face defending champion Skyler Woodward in one of the winners' side semifinals. John Gabriel, in the meantime, had worked his way through Jason Harkrider, Jeff West, Blaine Barcus, and Billy Thorpe to face the tournament's eventual runner-up, Shane McMinn, in the other winners' side semifinal.
 
Gabriel got into the hot seat match with a 7-2 win over McMinn. Chau had his hands full with Woodward, who fought him to double hill before moving to the loss bracket. Chau claimed the hot seat 7-3 over Gabriel and waited on the return of McMinn.
 
Lurking on the loss side was the recent VA State 9-Ball Champion, and third-ranked player in the world, Dennis Orcollo, who, after being awarded an opening round bye, had been defeated in his first match by Roberto Gomez 7-1. As the defeated players in the winners' side semifinal moved over, Orcollo was in the midst of a nine-match, loss-side winning streak that would take him as far as the quarterfinals. He'd gotten by Shane Manaole and Josh Roberts, both 7-3, to draw Woodward, which was as clear a case of 'out of the frying pan into the fire' as you're going to find anywhere in the world of pool. McMinn, in the meantime, drew Jeffery DeLuna, who'd defeated Jon Demet 7-3, and shut out Jason Klatt to reach him.
 
Orcollo ended Woodward's bid to defend his title 7-3, and in the quarterfinals, faced McMinn, who'd eliminated DeLuna 7-5. A predictable double hill fight ensued, eventually won by McMinn, who moved on to meet Gabriel in the semifinals. McMinn gave up only a single rack to Gabriel and got a shot at Chau in the hot seat. Chau, though, dashed any hopes McMinn was entertaining to be the third different winner of the Texas Open 10-Ball Championships with a 7-5 win in the finals.
 
The entire event was streamed live over the weekend by Ray Hansen and his PoolActionTV crew.