Appleton vs Immonen in first Accu Stats Arena Rules Match

Darren Appleton and Mike Immonen get things underway

At 8:00 pm on Friday the 6th of April at Sandcastle Billiards in Edison NJ, we saw the first in the series of the Arena Rules DVD Collection. This match will long be remembered for the thrilling result that the packed crowd surrounding the Accu-Stats Simonis Arena, witnessed in this PPV exhibition match between consecutive US Open Champions Darren Appleton vs. Mika Immonen. (Darren won in 2010 and 2011 and Mika in 2008 and 2009.)

One of the unique formats of the Arena Rules, is that the player in control of the table after the break, must push out or request that his opponent push out. (Generally the player in control of the table will make his opponent push out.) These rules are the brainchild of Pat Fleming, the owner of Accu-Stats Video Productions, who certainly had a smile on his face at the end of the evening when the match got to hill-hill at 12-12.

However, the match was anything but close early, as Darren just could not seem to get in stroke early on, and after quite a few uncharacteristic misses, soon found himself down 7-1, in this race to 13 match. (Another of the unique Arena Rules is the Sudden, Sudden death, early hill-hill finish. Which puts the match on the hill at 9-9, 10-10, 11-11 and 12-12.)

Darren seemed to get a giddy up in his step as he clawed his way back to 8-6. But Mika soon stretched his lead to 12-7. At this point in the proceedings, it looked as though Mika had the win in the bag, yet immediately he seemed to stall. This in conjunction with Darren, really appearing to come to terms with the push out rule and becoming less threatened by the three large 30 second shot clocks that are very prominently placed around the arena, helped Darren to win five consecutive games; to put the match on the hill at 12-12, much to the pleasure of the cheering VIP spectators around the arena and the eight deep crowd behind them.

Needless to say the crowd went crazy, as Darren sunk the final 10 ball to win this exciting match 13-12. This first event in the Arena Rules Collection was certainly a home run for both Accu-Stats and Sandcastle Billiards and it was appreciated by the PPV audience who love hill-hill matches.

More Arena Rules matches are planned at Sandcastle Billiards; the new home of the Accu-Stats Simonis Arena. Watch out for future dates and match ups.

NOTE: Due to the excitment and great play witnessed in the above match between Darren Appleton vs Mika Immonen, Accu-Stats has been innundated with requests from fans to be able to watch the above Arena Rules DVD Collection Match. To accomodate this request before it comes out in DVD, Accu-Stats are making it available on PPV for $5:95 for a limited time only by going to:

Photo courtesy of Karl Kantrowitz