Bata, Django Vow to Bounce Back in All Japan 9-Ball

Efren Reyes has not had the best of years this year

MANILA, PHILIPPINES---The country's most popular cue artist Efren
"Bata" Reyes and Francisco "Django" Bustamante promised to come back strong in the 2007 All Japan Championships which start today, Nov.21-25 at Hotel New Archaic Hall Oct 3-96 Showa-dori, Amagasaki-shi, Hyogo, Japan.

The winner in the event takes home JPY2,000,000 2nd : JPY1,000,000 3rd-4th : JPY500,000, 5th-8 th : JPY250,000 9th-16th : JPY125,000 17th-32nd : JPY60,000

The duo, top players of Puyat Sports, failed to advance in the cross-over semi-final round in the recently concluded Negros Oriental International 9-Ball Championships at the Dumaguete Convention Center in Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental last Saturday which was dominated by fellow Puyat Sports ace Alex "The Lion" Pagulayan.

The 28-year-old Pagulayan outplayed compatriot Ramil "Bebeng" Gallego, 13-9, in an All Filipino finals to capture the title plus $20,000 top prize in the event presented by San Miguel Corporation and supported by businessman Julio Sy Jr. and Negros Oriental 1 st district rep. Josie Limkaichiong.

Reyes, 53, will face D. Enami of Japan while Bustamante, 43, takes on T. Noda of Japan.

According to Reyes, acknowledged as one of the greatest players of all time, this is the third time in his professional billiard career that he only won a few tournaments.

He had a lackluster performance in 1997 to 1998 but won the Master of the Table award in the Derby City Classic this year in Lousville, Kentucky.

Reyes, a hall of famer in Billiards Congress of America (BCA) won the biggest cash prize ever in the history of pool winning last year's International Pool Championships World 8-Ball in Reno, Nevada which offers $500,000 top prize. Reyes has only received half of his prize but confident before the end of this year he will receive the other half of the prize.

Defending All Japan Champion Lee Vann Corteza opened his title retention bid goes up against T. Haraguchi.

Gallego, on the other hand, a five-time Japan winner will test the mettle with Chi-wai Au of Hongkong.

Warren Kiamco, current US Bar Table 9-Ball Champion and 8-Ball
Champion will meet qualifiers S8 according to official website.

The triumvirate (Corteza, Gallego and Kiamco) are playing under the
banner of Negros Billiard Stable (NBS).

Other notable cue masters include Mika Immonen of Finland, Ralf Souquet of Germany, Keng Kwang Chang of Singapore, Chia-Ching Wu, Ching-Shun Yang, Jung-Lin Chang, Po-cheng Kuo, Li-wen Lo and Hui-chan Lui of Taiwan.

Satoshi Kawabata, who beat Filipino Antonio Gabica in the 2006 Doha
Asian Games 8-ball final will be the front-liner of the host