Ranola Still Alive; Amit Crashed Out in Enerva Asian 9-Ball Tour

Ranola Still Alive; Amit Crashed Out in Enerva Asian 9-Ball Tour

Mandaluyong City, Philippines---Lone Filipina hopeful Irish Ranola whitewashed Sakiko Namiki of Japan, 9-0, in the continuation of hostilities in the Enerva Asian 9-ball Tour Ladies Championship Thursday at the Robinson's Galleria Mall here.

With the win from the loser's bracket, the 26-year-old Zamboangena lady cue artist remains in contention for the top prize of US$ 10,000 in this US$ 40,000 total cash pot in this prestigious billiards competition among ladies in the Asian region.

" I am just lucky that she lost her concentration in the crucial breaks. Namiki is no push-over, I hope I can continue my winning run." said the petite but with a smiling face Ranola in a post game interview.

The 4-feet-11 inches tall Ranola, who lost to Pei-Chun Lin of Chinese-Taipei, 7-9, in the opening round of the afternoon session Wednesday, bounced back with a 9-4 win over Suhana Dewi of Malaysia in the evening encounter. She will face Kazuko Shimizi of Japan in the next round in a must win confrontation. Whoever losses will bow out in the tournament co-organized by Puyat Sports and Solar Entertainment.

In another development, Filipina Rubilen "Bingkay" Amit,who hails from Cebu City was eliminated by Akimi Kajitani of Japan, 7-9, in the afternoon session Thursday of the loser's bracket.

Amit, likes Ranola, seeded outright in the main draw, beat Kyouko Sone of Japan, 9-3, in the afternoon session but ran aground to Chihiro Kawahara of Japan, 9-4, in the evening session Wednesday that sent her into the loser's bracket yesterday against Kajitani.

" She's (Kajitani) a very tough opponent. I have learned a lot from her." said Amit, reigning double gold winner in the 2005 Southeast Asian Games here in the country.

After winning the opening lag, the former World Pool 3rd placer and All Japan Champion, Kajitani clustered four consecutive racks to take a 4-1 commanding lead.

Kajitani, ranked No.1 player in Japan, could have won the game outright in the 14th racks after leading a 8-5 count but missed the No.7 ball allowing Amit to close the match at 6-8 count by cleaning up the table. She won again the 15th racks to get closer at 7-8 but the Japanese ace sealed the match with a devastating game in the 16th racks to make it 9-7.

" I am just lucky because the breaks came my way. Amit is a tough opponent. She (Amit) has a great future." said the long-legged and slim Kajitani.

Earlier, Kajitani was relegated to the loser's brackets after bowing to Shu-Han Chang of Chinese-Taipei, 2-9, but was able to bounce back into contention by demolishing Desak Kasih Aryati of Indonesia, 9-3, in this event supported by Nature's Best Products, Inc. and Enerva, women's energy drink and sanctioned by the Asian Pocket Billiards Union (APBU), Asian Confederation of Billiards Sports (ACBS) and the Billiards and Snooker Congress of the Philippines (BSCP) headed by Ernesto "Ernie" Fajardo.

2005-06 back to backs World Women's Champion Ga Young Kim of South Korea remain unscathed with two straight victories after edging Chieh-Yu Chou of Chinese-Taipei, 9-7, and Sakiko Namiki of Japan, 9-4, respectively. She will face in the next round Jennifer Chen of Chinese-Taipei, winner over Noriyo Hayashi of Japan, 9-4, and compatriot Ya-Ling Chen, 9-5.

" I expect a tough encounter with Jennifer (Chen). I'll just focus on my game." said Kim in an interpreter.

As of press time, still unbeaten are six players lead by Chihiro Kawahara of Japan who takes on Jui-Fang Fan of Chinese-Taipei, Yuan Chun Lin of Chinese-Taipei versus Mika Muneta of Japan and Vuthidhan Kongkaket of Thailand opposite Shu-Pin Kao of Chinese-Taipei.

RP billiards patron and organizer Aristeo "Putch" Puyat would like to thank the participants and their coaches for sparing their time in this first-ever and historic Women's Billiards Showdown. He also thanks the main sponsor like Enerva, women's energy drink and Asian Pocket Billiards Union (APBU) for inviting the various delegations from Asian countries and sanctioning the tournament.

He also acknowledge the officers and the members of Asian Confederation of Billiards Sports (ACBS), the one who planned this affair during the Southeast Asian Games last December here and the support of Billiards and Snooker Congress of the Philippines (BSCP) headed by Ernesto "Ernie" Fajardo.