Day One Complete At Petrich Open

Oliver Szolnoki

The first day is complete at the Dynamic Billard Petrich Open in Bulgaria as 157 players set forth on their quest for the fourth Euro Tour title of the year. With just the semi-finals and final taking place on the final day, Monday, there are a lot of matches to get through and it certainly pays to stay on the winners’ side of the draw.

Big name players still standing with no defeats to their names include Joshua Filler, Niels Feijen, Alexander Kazakis, Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz, Wiktor Zielinski, Mario He, Sanjin Pehlivanovic and Dennis Grabe.

One young player who won three from three today was the Netherland’s 17-year-old Yannick Pongers. The Dutchman has already enjoyed a
wonderful stay in Petrich having won two golds – 8-ball and 9-ball – at the recently completed European Pool Championships for Youth, and he started where he left off with three wins from three including a victory over Klenti Kaci which wasn’t without some controversy.

Commented Yannick, “It was a very good day for me. In fact, it was the first Euro Tour event where I’ve won three matches in a row and I beat Kaci which was a tough match. At 5-5 he missed a 9 ball then when he started racking, he smashed the 1 ball on the table, so the referee gave me an extra rack for unsportsmanlike behaviour.

“Then he gave up basically, unscrewed his cue and left the venue. My goal here is last 32 at least, I guess. We’ll see if I make it but I’m already happy with what I did but let’s see how far I go,” he added.

Another young player to stay on the winners’ side was Hungary’s Oliver Szolnoki who finally made it through after a nerve-wracking contest against Germany’s come-backing Lars Kuckherm. Szolnoki lead 7-2 with the win looking a formality, but Kuckherm plugged away as his play improved and he dragged it back to 7-7 before the Hungarian finished the match off at the death.

“I went up 7-2 and my break was working perfect and then I don’t know how, I missed an easy shot and then the match totally turned,” said a relieved Szolnoki.

“Every time he missed, I didn’t get a shot after that but he played well also and took his chances. I thought if I could just make a couple of break and runs, I would win the match but it didn’t work and somehow it was 7-7. In the end, I’m glad I’m through and survived this match.

“I saw some good signs – up to 7-2 I played very well, I think. Also, at 7-7 I managed to clear two tables under pressure so that was a positive but I’ll need to improve tomorrow,” he added.

Players reconvene tomorrow morning at 9am local time where the winners’ side have one more match to reach the last 32 single elimination knockout, while players on the one-loss side have a maximum of four games to reach the knock-out stage.

Play continues down to the final four on Sunday evening with the semi-finals and then the final commencing at 17.00 on Monday.

As well as the prize money, there are Tour ranking points on offer as well as world ranking points, so there is everything to play for. All Euro Tour tournaments are 9-ball and players compete in a double-elimination format, playing down to the last 32 competitors, and then single elimination until the finish. All matches are races to 9 racks with alternate break.

All the matches can be viewed live at as well as selected
matches on Facebook Live on the EPBF page. In addition, the semi-finals
and final, played out on Monday night, will be live or highlights on the
following television stations across Europe;

SportKlub HD – Serbia, Slovenia, Croatia, Montenegro, North Macedonia,
Bosnia Herzegovina, Greece
Eyecons – Netherlands
SportKlub – Poland
ORF – Austria
B1B Box – Bulgaria

Results, live scoring and draw are available at

Go to discussion...


Leave a comment

Please log in to comment