Boyes Wins Through Tough Field for Masters Spot

Karl Boyes - File photo courtesy of Diana Hoppe

THERE WERE THREE more qualifying spots decided at weekend as the World Pool Masters – Race to Vegas, kicked into gear. Events in England, Belgium and Russia produced three quality players who will take their place in the 64 player line-up at the Riviera Hotel from 12 – 16 May.

On Monday 15th March at the Buxton Palace Hotel in the UK, England's Karl Boyes won the qualifying event run by GB9 to secure a place in Las Vegas.

The 27 year-old was a bronze medallist at the 2007 World Pool Championship and was recently was part of the victorious Great Britain side at the World Team Championship. He will now join team mates Darren Appleton, Mark Gray, Imran Majid and Daryl Peach at the Riviera.

‘Roll on Vegas! I am very happy to be involved in another Matchroom event as I think they put on the best shows in the pool world. I have only ever played in one of their events before and placed third at the World Champs so hopefully I can go better in the Masters,' said Boyes.

The Blackpool-based Boyes beat some good names en route to the final where he triumphed 8-4 against Paul Williams.

They included 8-4 wins against Craig Osborne and Michael Valentine and an 8-7 win over Chris Melling in the semi-final.

Over in Leuven, Belgium on Saturday 13th, it was the turn of Noel Bruynooghe as he beat Germany's Kay Rieke, countryman Pascal Budo and then Gijs van Helmond of Holland in the decider.

Bruynooghe, 38, has a respectable track record on the European circuit and was part of the Belgian pairing that had a terrific run to the quarter-finals of the 2007 World Cup of Pool.

Finally, in St Petersburg, Russia, Yevgeny Novosad of the Ukraine overcame the young but experienced Ruslan Chinakhov (Russia) 8-6 to win his Masters berth.

Novosad at 19 years-old, becomes the first Ukrainian player ever to compete in a Matchroom Sport pool tournament.

Working with an array of respected partners around the world, the qualifying events take in France, England, Scotland, Holland, Belgium, Norway, Poland, Romania, Russia, Spain, Canada, USA, Australia, Malaysia, Taiwan and Japan. This will give every pool player in the world the opportunity to win a trip to Las Vegas and mix it with the world's elite in the Masters.

Each qualifying event will carry an entry fee and have, in most cases a maximum field of 32 players. The winner of each event wins a trip to Vegas, to include flight and accommodation, to compete in the Masters and there are cash prizes for high finishers depending on entries.

After 17 years as a 16-player invitational competition, the Masters, one of the longest established tournaments in pool, has moved to 64 players and will run from Wednesday, May 12 to Sunday, May 16, will take place at the Riviera Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada.

Working in conjunction with Cuesports International, the Masters takes place during the annual BCAPL National 8-Ball Championships, which sees thousands of players and fans flock to the Riviera for a lengthy festival of pool.

The first two days of the main event in May feature double elimination play on a multi-table set-up as the field reduces from 64 down to 32.

The event then goes to single elimination and the last 16 is played out in a single table arena setting in front of the TV cameras, culminating in the final on the evening of Sunday, May 16.

Television is produced by Matchroom Sport and will be seen as 15 x one hour programmes in 14 countries around the world with more to be added to the list.

The prize fund is set at a guaranteed $100,000 with $20,000 going to the eventual champion.