Simonis Predator Europe vs Philippines Challenge Match

The players pose prior to the challenge match

Dragon Promotions produced a special challenge match between Europe and Philippines hosted by Hard Times Billiards in Bellflower,California. Europe was represented by the sharp looking Mika Immonen(FIN) and Thorsten Hohmann (GER) while Philippines was represented by World Cup of Pool Champs Efren Reyes and Francisco Bustamante. A packed crowd of 200 fans had waited since 2 hours prior to secure their seats for the match. The match was sponsored by Simonis Cloth and Predator Cues.

Reyes took on Hohmann in a straight pool match race to 100 on a very tight and challenging triple shimmed table, while Immonen would battle out Bustamente in bank pool race to 3. In a neck to neck battle, Hohmann prevailed over Reyes 100-92 while Immonen failed in his best game to overcome the ferocious Francisco 3-1.

"These tables are not meant for 14.1." commented John Schmidt, US Open Champion who stopped by to sweat the action." It's a little too tight for high runs. But it's impressive to see the intensity of all these players here. The fans are taking this very seriously and so the players are getting into it. I told Mika and Thorsten not too take this match too lightly cause to a lot of these Filipino fans, this is not a joke!

The winning team would be decided in a final race to 7 scotch doubles match. Mika and Thorsten looked in perfect sync as they climbed to a 6-3 lead. But the Pinoys began their magical journey back to 6-5, and then Immonen missed a near straigh in 9Ball to win the match. Now at 6-6, Hohmann made 2 great kickshots to outmaneuver Reyes and Bustamante's witty safeties. Hohmann was left with a long 2Ball with cue ball frozen to the rail. He hit with near perfect speed and accuracy. Somehow the 2Ball failed to go in and hung up! Reyes and Bustamante then cleaned up the table in alternate fashion to win the match and the event win for the Philippines to the cheers of the Filipino fans .

"We had an amazing turn out today, and it's a Monday!" said Brook Thomason. "Believe it or not, this was out first exhibition we ever hosted. This was great, and next time we want to make it even better."