Philippine Open Day Two Reports

Pin Yi Ko

Taiwanese Assert Their Presence
Three Taiwanese players fought their way into the third round in the winners bracket, while two stayed alive in the losers bracket. Either way, the Taiwanese are making their presence felt again in an international tournament as they showed strength in the face of top-flight competition in the ongoing Philippine Open.

Two-time world junior champion Pin-Yi Ko, seeded fourth, led the Taiwanese march with convincing victories over Kenichi Uchigaki (9-6) and Naoyuki Oi (9-3).
Hui-chan Lu trounced Arnel Bautista (9-4) and former world champion Thorsten Hohmann (9-4).

Pei-Wei Chang, a former world 9-ball championship runner-up, beat Jasan Klatt (9-5) and Fabio Petroni (9-6).

In the losers bracket, current Taiwanese No. 1 Che-Wei Fu remained in contention with a lopsided win over Kenji Taguchi (9-3). He was beaten decisively earlier by Leonardo Didal by the score of 4-9.

Also sporting a 1-1 record is Po-Cheng Kuo, a former WPC runner-up also. He made short work of Sarah Rousey, 9-4, in the opening. But he then came up short Marcus Chamat, 5-9.

Despite missing the presence of former double world champion Chia-Ching Wu and money game king Ching-Shun Yang, the Taiwanese contingent look every bit as deadly and formidable. Ko, for one, looks ready for the big time after his victories in the Subic-Olongapo Open and Bangkok Open.

US Bets Contend For Top Position
Four American players are methodically moving their way to the top of the ongoing Philippine Open at SM Megamall.

In second round matches Thursday, Shane Van Boening and Gabe Owen beat separate opponents to stay in the winners bracket.

Seeded No. 5, Van Boening beat Korean Young Hwa Jeong 9-2. The American champion appears to be finding his groove with his second decisive win in a row. He earlier beat Singaporean Keng Kwang Chan by the score of 9-5.

After barely hurdling the first round via a hill-hill match against Singaporean Toh Lian Han, Owen found his form Thursday as he trounced Scot Jonni Fulcher 9-3.

On the losers bracket, Corey Deuel and Oscar Dominguez remain in contention for the top prize.

Deuel beat Ibrahim Bin Amir of Malaysia 9-5, while Dominguez hurdled Julie Kelly of Ireland, 9-6.

Filipino Fortunes Mixed

A day after Mario Tolentino pulled off a king-sized upset win against the world's No.1 player, Ralf Souquet of Germany, Filipinos had mixed fortunes in the Philippine Open after two days of play.

Antonio Gabica, Asian Games gold medalist, subdued Bin Amir Ibrahim, 9-2, while De Luna ripped fellow Filipino Jestoni Magadia, 9-2.  

The two Filipinos joined Tolentino and Pulpul as the only undefeated Pinoy players in the tournament.

In contrast, however, one of the country's promising players, Jericho Banares, got the early exit door. The reigning national junior champion dropped a 7-9 decision against Toh Lian Han of Singapore. The 19-year-old pride of Cainta failed to secure a win and lost his first two games.     

Former Asian snooker champion  Marlon Manalo also absorbed a stunning defeat – against Rudi Susanto of Indonesia, 7-9 – in the second round Thursday. With his 1-1 record, he was relegated to the losers' bracket.     

Also sporting a 1-1 record and still alive in the Open are: James Al Ortega (winner over Jason Klatt, 9-5); Alan Cuartero (winner over Bautista, 9-5); Oliver Villafuerte (winner over Resty Labastida, 9-3). Jestoni Magadia (loser to De Luna, 9-2) an Victor Arpilleda (loser to Fisher, 9-7).

Already eliminated are Jerico Banares, Jonas Magpantay, Luis Saberdo, Edgar Acaba, Elvis Calasang, Arnel Bautista, Marvin Tapia and Elmer Kalaquian.

Nine European Players In the Hunt
Europe, holder of the three WPA world championships, is in the thick of the battle for top honors in the Philippine Open, despite the surprise setback suffered by world no. 1 Ralf Souquet.

Still undefeated after two rounds of play are world 10-ball champion Darren Appleton of the UK, Kelly Fisher of Ireland, Radislaw Babica of Poland, and Marcus Chamat of Sweden.

Darren Appleton beat Japanese Hayato Hijikata 9-6 in a live TV table match.
Marcus Chamat affirmed his top 10 world rating in beating Taiwanese Po-Cheng Kuo, 9-5.

Babica continued caught attention in hurdling Austrian Martin Kemptner in a tight match, 9-7.

Fisher entered the third round Wednesday night when she beat Filipino Victor Arpilleda 9-7.  

On the losers bracket, Germans Souquet and Thorsten Hohmann, Italian Fabio Petroni, Russian Ruslan Chihanov, and Austrian Martin Kemptner remain in

Europe's biggest loss in Thursday's action was Jasmin Ouschan of Austria who lost to Ernesto Dominguez of Mexico in a hill-hill thriller. The pretty Austrian missed a fairly easy shot at the 10-ball in the final rack.