Hsia takes World Pool League Lead

It was superior breaking power that ultimately told as 28 year-old Taiwanese star Hui-kai Hsia overcame Germany's Thorsten Hohmann to move to the top of the 2003 StanJames.com World Pool League in Warsaw.

Hsia rattled in two consecutive 'Golden Breaks'; firstly to go to 5 - 1 and then wrap up the points at 6 - 2 and his thunderous break shot was a feature of the match.

Things looked different at the outset as Hsia missed a straight but long 9-ball to gift the opener to the World Champion, but Hsia broke and ran the second to level it up.

A couple of mistakes from Hohmann, the first a missed bank shot and the second a missed long blue 2 when forced to jack up off the rail, gave Hsia the chances he required to take it to 4 - 1. From there Hsia's break shot put him over the line.

In a high quality match where neither player made much in the way of errors, World Pool Masters champion Tony Drago made up for his poor showing this afternoon as he stuck with Efren Reyes to share the points at 5 - 5.

Reyes, as ever supported by a loyal Pinoy contingent in the crowd, started with his usual intent as he broke and ran the first rack.

A lax safety by the Filipino maestro in the next allowed Drago to run out the rack in double quick time and that was to be the story of the match.

In fact, six of the next eight racks were won from the break shot as the crowd were royally treated by two confident players well in stroke. Bata Reyes' point pushed him into second place behind Hsia.

In the final match of the evening, European Mosconi Cup captain Oliver Ortmann's misery continued as he made one mistake too many to let Rodney Morris steal the two points by a 6 - 4 margin.

Morris won the opener off his break and the second as Ortmann got locked up with the 7 and 9 and could not execute a good enough safety to keep the smooth stroking Morris out.

The pair split the next two with break and runs before another inexplicable go at a safety by Ortmann allowed Morris to clear the table and go into a 4 - 1 lead.

Ortmann took the next but another loose safety gave Morris an easy out to send him to 5 - 2. The next two went with the break and that was enough to give Morris the two points and open his 2003 StanJames.com World Pool League account.

Play continues tomorrow afternoon with three further matches.

First Session Results:
Hui-kai Hsia (TPE) 6 - 4 Thorsten Hohmann (Ger)
Tony Drago (Mal) 5 - 5 Efren Reyes (Phi)
Rodney Morris (USA) 6 - 4 Oliver Ortmann (Ger)

Day One Standings:

Plys Won Drwn Lost For Away Pts +/-
1 Hsia 2 2 0 0 14 6 4 +8
2 Reyes 2 1 1 0 11 9 3 +2
3 Hohmann 2 1 0 1 10 10 2 -
4 Morris 2 1 0 1 10 10 2 -
5 Drago 2 0 1 1 7 13 1 -6
6 Ortmann 2 0 0 2 8 12 0 +4