Pinoy bet Pulpul, Chinese Guo advance to World 10-Ball Main Draw

MANILA, Philippines -- Demosthenes "Plong-Plong" Pulpul booked a seat in the upcoming 2011 World 10-Ball Championship (WTBC) by beating Edgar Acaba, 9-2, in the penultimate day of the tournament qualifiers on Friday night.

The former WTBC semifinalist made short work of the veteran Acaba moments after he ran roughshod over 17-year-old Jonas Magpantay in the semifinal round.

By winning the Qualifier, Pulpul earned a seat in the main draw of the WTBC for the third straight time.

While Pulpul had an easier time disposing off his last two rivals on Friday, Guo Hoa of China and Egie Geronimo battled to a standstill until the final rack.

In the end, the Chinese cue artist proved to be the steadier player as he salvaged a tense 9-8 win to advance to the main draw.

"I thought I was going to lose the match because of the way he was able to make the first two balls," said Guo through interpreter Joyren Ting. "But both players really deserve to win the match as both of us played our hearts out."

Guo appeared headed to an early win when he won the 14th rack and went up, 8-6.

But in the 15th rack, he missed the 10-ball, allowing Geronimo to stay alive.

Geronimo continued to hang tough in the 16th rack. He made a nifty 6-10 combo to set up a final game.

Off the break, Geronimo sank the 3-ball and looked to complete a come-from-behind victory, but just when his luck was about to carry him all the way, his run hit a snag.

He missed the 5-ball in the corner, allowing his Chinese rival to get back to the table and clean up the remaining balls.

The qualifying stage matches of the WTBC return to the Star Billiards Center in Quezon City for the final day with the last two spots for the main draw up for grabs.