Souquet Blasts Through Field at Turning Stone

Ralf Souquet with tournament director Mike Zuglan

Ralf Souquet never tasted defeat at the Turning Stone resort in Verona NY as he showed why he is the number one ranked player in the world and the AZB Player of the Year. His flawless shotmaking and supernatural safety play left opponents no air to breathe and even the acknowledged greats of the game completely floundered when they faced him.

As an example of his power just take a look at what happened when he played Mika Immonen. Immonen is rightly acknowledged as one of the finest pool players the game has ever seen and he has been on a hot streak for well over a year. He is a former World 9-Ball Champion (2001) and he has gotten better since he won that title. At this event he destroyed two other World Champions without ever straining his cue. He demolished the current World Ten Ball Champion, Darren Appleton, 9-1. Then he took on another former World 9-Ball Champion, Thorsten Hohmann. Thorsten never stood a chance. Immonen simply never gave him any opportunities and dominated the match to win 9-3.

But when Immonen went up against Souquet it was as if a flower were challenging a howitzer. Immonnen barely rose from his chair the entire match as Ralf strung together 9-ball after 9-ball. Souquet melted the Iceman 9-1 and never looked like he was even concerned about the outcome. He made it look easy. He did that all week. Shane Van Beening fell to him 9-4, and when he faced off against the local favorite, Dennis Hatch, in the finals he was going up against the man who had been breaking the best of anyone on the particular table on which they played. Hatch did better than most, but in the end he asked Ralf to "put me out of my misery". Ralf complied by running the last rack and winning the championship with the 13-7 win over Hatch.

A very special AZB tip of the hat goes to Simonis Cloth. Simonis North America sponsored the AZBTV live stream of this event. Thanks also to The Turning Stone Resort for their excellent hospitality and to Mike Zuglan for producing this Joss Tour event.