Shaw vs Lechner for International 9-Ball Title

Jayson Shaw (File photo courtesy of World Pool Series)
Only four men were left standing on Saturday morning at the International 9-Ball Open. The days first match was one-loss side action between Jayson Shaw and Justin Bergman. Bergman controlled the scene during the first part of the contest and jumped out to a 6-2 lead before Shaw could really see any daylight. Even then, the table seemed to work against him. He had a shot at getting within two games but his cue ball went nuts and struck the 8 ball early in the rack and it came out and snookered him. When  Bergman finished the rack out he led 7-3 and the fans of the Scotsman began to feel concern.
At 8-3, Shaw finally gained some daylight and began what he thought could be a comeback. His break failed him though, in rack #13 after he had cut the lead to 8-5. and Bergman put him in jail with a safety on the one ball. Shaw scratched on his jump shot, but Bergman had an unexpected miss on the four ball, so Shaw had another shot at the rack. He got out to make it 8-6 and keep the tension high.
Shaw scratched on the next break and left an open table. Bergman took that gift all the way home to lead 9-6. Shaw took the next rack, and the next. A safety battle early in the next rack resulted in Bergman scratching off of a kick shot. Shaw took the rack to tie the match at 9 games apiece and suddenly they were in a race to two games to see who would move on and who would settle for fourth place. When Shaw broke and ran the next rack he took his first lead of the match and got  to the hill first, at 10-9. Bergman would not get another shot as Shaw again broke and ran to win the match 11-9. 
Next was the winners side finals for the hot seat between Joshua Filler and Maximillian Lechner. Lechner had the first rack in his pocket when he followed the eight ball in and scratched, giving ball in hand and the first win to Filler. Filler took the next rack as well and then Lechner got his first bead off of a 4-9 combination to trail by one game at 2-1. Lechner scratched on the break shot in the next rack and at this level a scratch can be very costly. Filler ran out. 3-1. Filler was on his way to another run when he had to cheat the pocket on the 8 ball and it hung up. 3-2.
Filler took the next rack and then had a bit of good fortune as he nicked the 9 ball on a shot on the one ball and the 9 fell into  the side pocket to go up 5-4.  The next racks went as expected until we were tied at six games apiece. Lechner then scratched on the break and Filler cashed that in for  the lead at 7-6. Filler broke and ran the next rack to go up 8-6. 
Two racks later we were tied at 8 apiece and the players were shooting nearly dead even. Their TPA’s were at 903 and 905, not enough difference to notice. Lechner ran the next rack to lead 9-8. He then broke and ran the next game to get to 10-8. When he broke and ran the next game for a three-pack, he won the match and the right to take the first seat in our finals. 
Shaw took the early lead against Filler, going up 2-0 very quickly. He was about to take the third rack as well, but he got out of line on the 9-ball and hung it in the corner. Filler cashed in for 2-1. In the fourth game, Shaw tried a long-rail bank straight back and missed. The cueball collided with the still-moving object ball and it scratched him into the side pocket. Filler again took advantage of the error and soon we were tied at two games each.
Both players were solid for the next few racks and soon we stood at 5-4 with Filler holding the tiny lead. Filler’s game seemed then to reach another level. He was completely snookered on the two ball in the next rack and pulled off a table-length jump shot to stay at the table, run the rack, and take the 7-4 lead. 
Filler scratched on the next break shot. Shaw won that rack and the next and the next and once again we found two great players tied going  into the latter stages of the match.The wins had Shaw feeling strong and he broke and ran the 15th rack to go up 8-7. Filler was able to stop the rot by winning the next rack and we were again tied, this time at eight racks each.
Jayson won the next rack due to a fluke ball that kept him at the table. A little luck never hurts. His next break shot opened the  table beautifully. Shaw ran the table easily to get to the hill at 10-8. Shaw had broken and run five racks and so needed this one more. He had another great break result and that was all he needed to win and go into the finals against Maximillian Lechner.
The finals are scheduled for 8:30 Norfolk time tonight. Follow along with our realtime scoring and watch the final match online as part of the Accu-Stats online PPV