Appleton wins Challenge of Champions

Darren Appleton

How do you follow up your second straight US Open 9-Ball crown? If you are Darren Appleton, you follow it up with a win at the 2011 Challenge of Champions at the Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, Ct.

This event calls for four invited players to compete in two races to five and a one game sudden death playoff if the players split the first two sets.

There was no sudden death playoff for Darren in his first match as he posted back to back 5-2 wins over World 9-Ball Champion Yukio Akakariyama. 

The other semi-final match saw World 10-Ball Champion defeat Mika Immonen in a sudden death playoff after winning 5-2 and then losing 5-3.

The final match between Appleton and See did not start off well for Appleton, with See winning the first set 5-2. Appleton came back to force a tie-breaker with a 5-2 win of his own in the second set.

See won the lag for the sudden death game, but was unable to get a shot on the one after the break. See did take control after an Appleton safety, with a successful jump shot. That control came unraveled though, when See missed a five ball and was forced to sit and watch Appleton run out the remaining balls for the win.

Appleton earned $25,000 in the winner take all event.