Reyes Clinches Third Consecutive San Miguel Title

Efren Reyes receiving a US $10,000 prize money cheque from Ms Pamela Sulit, Brand Manager for San Miguel Beer

March 14, 2004, Ho Chi Minh City . . . San Miguel Asian 9-Ball Tour finished at the Nguyen Du Sports Hall in Ho Chi Minh City today after Reyes triumphed with his third Tour title by beating Fong-Pang Chao 11-9 in a final between two former world champions.

This is the first encounter of the two former world champions in the Tour. Chao cued up with 4-1 and 9-5 lead respectively but he could not bring home his first Tour victory as The Magician came back every time. The “Cool Face Killer” was chilled when he fouled in his break of the 15th rack and missed no.2 ball shot in the 17th rack. Reyes took the opportunity to score six racks in a row to clinch a classic victory in this clash of world champions.

It is the first-ever semi-final fixtures in the Tour with players from four different countries/ regions. In the first semi-final between Alok Kumar of India and Efren Reyes from the Philippines, series of pocketing misses of Kumar cost him the chance to become the first Indian finalist. He had seven pocketing misses in the game and thus thrashed by Reyes at 11-1.

As Kumar, Shin-Young Park was also punished by his pocketing mistakes in his clash with Fong-Pang Chao. Park was left behind after tying at 4-4 and he finally bowed out by 4-11.

Earlier today, Chatchawal Rutphae's dream of becoming the first Thai player in semi-final ended when he lost 8-9 against Shin-Young Park of Korea in a game full of twists. Park started the game with a 3-0 lead but Chatchawal then came back with five racks in a row to take the lead. But he failed to seal the victory at 8-5 and let the world number 34 player scored four consecutive racks to earn his second semi-final appearance in the Tour.

Alok Kumar staged another comeback classic to clinch the last semi-final berth. He overcame a 3-5 deficit to sweep five racks in a row to beat Hung-Hsiang Wang of Chinese Taipei.

Featuring a field of 32 Asia's best players, the Tour also provides the opportunity for the 32 participating players to garner qualifying points towards the World Pool Championships in July. The Tour is the only ranking event in Asia for players to qualify to the World Pool Championships.

Adding to the stakes will be a prize money purse of US$50,000 up for grabs this weekend and on each subsequent stop of the San Miguel Asian 9-Ball Tour; Hong Kong (April 17-18), Taipei (May 7-9) and Manila (May 29-30). The main draw includes players from Asian 11 countries/ regions.

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