Invincible Zheng Yubo Is The New World Chinese 8-Ball Master
Michael Day - Thecuereview.com
Jan. 12, 2018
Zheng Yubo (Photo courtesy of Max Mu)
Zheng Yubo (Photo courtesy of Max Mu)
Zheng Yubo went undefeated throughout to become just the third different winner of the JOY World Chinese 8-Ball Masters, collecting a record breaking $151,000 top prize in the process. 
 
64 players from 23 countries featured in the double elimination main draw, although come the Last 8, it was an exclusively home affair in Qinhuangdao. 
 
3-time champion Gareth Potts wasn't helped being struck by illness for his title defence. The Englishman was dethroned after losing two of his opening four fixtures.
 
Newly crowned World 9-Ball Champion Carlo Biado was eliminated sooner; exiting the competition at the earliest possible avenue via a brace of defeats straight off.
 
International resistance came in the shape of the USA's Shane Van Boening and Chile's Enrique Rojas who, after a trio of wins, both secured very credible Top 12 finishes.
 
Having come through International Qualifying in the same venue prior to this, Jack Whelan (UK) and Delgerhuu Ahtuya (Mongolia) also put up spirited displays, as too did reigning World Under 17 9-Ball Champion Sanjin Pehlivanovic (Bosnia & Herzegovina), who was automatically awarded a wildcard. All three made the Top 16.
 
However, it was home nation star Zheng who took the spoils, and no-one can say his triumph isn't deserved. 
 
Off the back of a tremendous season that saw him claim back-to-back tour events in Linyi and Lianyungang, Zheng went through the entire draw without losing.
 
In the earlier rounds he defeated Li Hewen, Van Boening and two-time winner and current World Chinese Pool Champion Yang Fan. In the Winner's Side Final he dispatched Wu Hao 12-9.
 
Zheng's opponent in the one-off Championship Match was youngster Zhang Kunpeng, who last year was caught and ousted by Potts in a Black-Ball Shoot-Out in the final. 
 
After a loss in the Last 16 Winners Side, Zhang took the long road to the final and had to win a further 7 matches on route.
 
?Predictably, there was expectation of a close final between the pair, however, it was anything but. Yubo was simply awesome as he forged a commanding lead which his rival could never claw back. He even managed to race through the last few racks to take the tie and championship, 19-9, before the allotted time limit expired.
 
?Kunpeng, who himself picked up a tour win in Xining during the campaign, will surely be sore losing consecutive World Masters finals, although happy with the way he made it through considering an early loss - in 2017 he appeared in the final as the undefeated player.
 
For the full set of results, please visit the dedicated results page at thecuereview.com to see how the event unfolded.
 
To learn more about Chinese 8-Ball, please visit Home Leisure Direct's complete guide here.