Brunswick Metro 3rd Annual Korea International Championships Final Report

In the all Korean women final four, Korea KPT #2 Yun Mi Lim took on #3 Sung Hyun Jung in the first semi finals on MBC ESPN. Though Jung had dominated womens pool in Korea for the last 4 years, recent times have shown incredible improvements from the younger Korean women and Lim has had the upper hand against Jung in their last several encounters. Unforunately for Lim, Jung decided it was time for a change. Though Lim got to the hill 5-3 first, she gave up a chance to win with a 9 Ball carom shot gone wrong, which gave Jung the game and another mistake in rack 10 by Lim made it hill-hill. Jung made a great out in the case game to enter the finals.

Next were TV first timers Yuram Cha and Mi Sook Kwan. Kwan is a veteran of womens pool in Korea while Cha is a teenage prodigy who was formerly coached by national hero Shin Young Park(who also coached 2x world champion Ga Young Kim) since she was 13 years old. Now 18 years old, Cha has become a force to be reckon with winning the last KPT tour stop and currently ranked #1 in Korea. Yuram Cha controlled the match from the start and did not show any signs of jitters and won a decisive 6-2 verdict.

"Cha has tremendous ability and competitive drive. She has youth on her side and plenty of time. Compared to Ga Young Kim, Cha is stronger than Ga Young was at that same age and has a more complete game at 18 years old. She has a bright future." says Shin Young Park.

In the battle of association pride, Japan's JBC Go Takami went head to head with JPBA's #1 Tanaka . Go Takami has had a great 3 years defeating such notables as Archer, Immonen, Hohmann, and Williams...but yet to win a major event. The Korean fans and players have nicknamed him "Sticky" because his opponents can never seem to get rid of him and his knack for staying on the players and in the tournament.

Go "Sticky" Takami seemed to look on his way to a big win with a 4-2 lead, but the tide changed with the ever steady Tanaka coming back for 5 games in a row to win 7-4.

On the other side, #2 JPBA Kusano took on Japan Junior Champion Hijikata. Hijikata's first time on TV in a pro event finally showed some nerves and within 10 minutes Kusano gained a 4-0 lead. Hijikata eventually sucumbed 7-2 to, Kusano but ended a respectable 3rd place tie for his best pro career finish.

The womens finals was a showdown of the former #1 veteran Sung Hyun Jung and the newcomer #1 KPT Ranked Yuram Cha. Yuram had played steady and determined the whole week while Sung Hyun seemed to be struggling with her game. Cha took an early lead at 2-0, but Jung hung in and stayed close until 3-3. Then Jung took the breaks off and played flawless to defeat Cha 6-3 to win not only her first, but Korea's first win at the Korea International Championships. Previous years had Korea placing runner-up to Japan 2 consecutive times in the womens division .

The mens finals were all Japan and JPBA stars #1 Tanaka vs #2 Kusano. Both played well and fearlessly but Kusano had the best breaks that garnered him a quick 6-3 lead. But some risky choices gave Tanaka the opportunity to come back to 6-6. Luck fortuned Kusano at the end and gave him the 7-6 win for Japan's first Mens Division win at the Korea International Championships.

The fans were treated to a special trickshot demonstration before each semi and finals match on MBC ESPN. Korea's #1 trickshot pool star Shin Young Park had some clever shots, Shuji Nagata of Japan kept the audience laughing with his routine, Charlie Williams of USA entertained with his power shots, and Ralph Eckert wowed the crowd with his excellent routines and gave an encore performance for the Mens Finals.

The Brunswick Metro Korea International Championships is produced by Dragon Promotions and will air for 6 weeks on Korea's #1 network MBC ESPN and is part of the Brunswick Korea Pro Pool Tour. The next event is scheduled for July and more info can be found at