Hard First Day at The Predator International 10-Ball CHampionships

Las Vegas, Nevada- With 96 invited pros at the Predator International 10-Ball Championship, there were very few easy draws to be found in the event. Top names already scattering the losers side include Thomas Engert (GER), Ramil Gallego (PHI), Warren Kiamco (PHI), Christian Reimering (GER), Mike Davis (USA), Charlie Bryant (USA), and more.

"This is one of the toughest fields I've ever seen. It's impossible to not face a top player by your second match. This might be a harder start than even the World 9-Ball Championship." said Raj Hundal, representing India for the first time in the USA.

It was also a hard first day for 5 out of the 6 women playing in the Predator International 10-Ball Championships. The six women invited to play are Yu-Ram Cha (Korea Champion), Yukiko Hamanishi (Japan Champion), Amalia Matas (Spanish Champion), Sarah Rousey (Top USA pro), Gerda Hofstatter (WPBA #2 from Austria), and the World's #1 Allison Fisher of Great Britain.

Sarah Rousey dropped a 10-5 match to Japan JBC #2 Goh Takami while Yu-Ram Cha never got going against Aruba's Richard Wolffe 10-3. Haminishi was not enough for experienced Ernesto Dominguez of Mexico and Matas also failed in her first round attempt.

Not all was at a loss though for the women. Gerda Hofstatter might have had some extra motivation being sponsored in the event by Predator, as she came back from behind 6-2 to win a close 10-8 match against experienced, big time road player Chris Bartrum of the USA. Gerda moves on to face #27 seed Charlie Williams of the USA tomorrow morning. Williams and Hofstatter are both big advocates of Predator Cues.

"I respect Gerda's game. There are definitely some serious talent among the women nowadays. I won't take her lightly." says Charlie Williams, former BCA Open Champion.

Allison Fisher, being ranked #1 in the World, was the lone woman seeded in the event at #31 and received a bye. She faces Mexico's intimidating Rafael Martinez tomorrow and will be playing live on video stream on www.predator10ball.com. If she wins she will have an even bigger challenge if Francisco Bustamante wins his match.

Finally, the match many fans and pros had been waiting for. Tony Drago versus Luc Salvas. The Tornado against The Machine Gun.

The match that lasted only 44 minutes for a total of 18 games. Each game averaged 2 minutes 40 seconds per rack. In comparison, most of the other matches have taken 1.5 hours - 2 hours to play at 6-7 minutes per rack.

Salvas won the first game and then Drago went on a 6 game streak to lead 6-1. Salvas fought back hard to keep the match close but ended up succumbing 10-8 to Tony.

"I was upstairs in the Skybox practicing with Efren, and every time we glanced down, the scoreboard was changing it seemed every few moments! These guys were putting the balls and racks together so fast that you couldn't blink or you'd miss the game." said one pro.

In a moment of great sportsmanship, both players embraced each other after the match.

"It was a hard match because Luc is a great guy and we are friends." said Drago after the match. When asked if there was any additional pressure to play faster than normal to outdo the other fast shooter Dragon simply stated, "I always just play my game and speed regardless. Besides, how can I play any faster? If I played faster than this I'd miss the whole ball!"