Predator Slovenian Open – Kibaroglu Looking To Maintain Her Top Spot

Eylul Kibaroglu

The Predator Euro Tour Women is back in Lasko, Slovenia as 37 players from across Europe ready themselves to do battle in the fifth event of a six-tournament season. In total, 17 countries are represented and the lady to beat this week is No.1 ranked player Eyllul Kibaroglu of Turkey, a winner last time out in Petrich, Bulgaria where she took her maiden Predator Euro Tour title.

The Turkish star, who celebrated her 34th birthday yesterday, had a little too much for Germany’s Pia Filler in Bulgaria as she ran out a 7-4 winner in the final. That propelled her to No.1 in the standing following a run of form that saw her ascend the rankings.

Six players are within 300 ranking points of Kibaroglu, including Slovenia’s Ana Gradisnik who is just 50 points behind, so a high finish here in Lasko is essential for the Turkish girl. Gradisnik heads a contingent of three players representing the host nation, so they will all be hoping to still be competing on Monday in the closing stages.

We caught up with Ine Helvik (Norway), a veteran of the Tour, having played in its earlier incarnation as well as being a part of its latter revival.

“I’ve been playing the tour in two parts really. I played in the first one in the beginning of the 2000s and then myself and Ina Kaplan started this tour going now many years ago and I’ve been playing almost every tournament.

“I still enjoy it and I always want to win my matches and to perform as best as I can. I would like to win but some of these girls do nothing but play pool and I have a day-time job and stuff so it’s not that easy but I always go into a match with the aim to win it.

“Looking at the players here, Eyllul Kibaroglu has become very stable. She’s always been good and a very good shot-maker but the last year or two she’s been more stable and she performs on that level almost all the time.

“No.2 Ana Gradisnik likes playing at home as she has her family here and has all the support of the locals who are very good at coming out and supporting her. Of course, there’s always pressure playing on home ground but she enjoys it. The pandemic did Pia Filler very well as she could focus only on playing pool and practice and that shows. Put the hours in and you get the reward.

“Of the younger players, we have my Norwegian team mate Nina Torvund. She’s going to be really good in a couple of years. She’s now getting all the tournaments in and practicing and she’s definitely a future top European player. Also, Bojana Sarac and Hanna Memic are both playing really well. There’s definitely a future here!” she added.

The ranking is calculated on a rolling six event series with each player dropping the event which yielded them the least points. Once an event is concluded, the first event from the six is dropped to be replaced by points from the current tournament.

Play gets underway at 9.00am local time tomorrow. All Predator Euro Tour Women tournaments are 9-ball and the field contest a double-elimination format, playing down to the last 16 competitors, and then single elimination until the finish. All matches are a race to 7 racks with alternate break.

All the matches can be viewed live at
Results, live scoring and draw are available at

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