Souquet Grabs French Gold

Souquet snatches title in a dramatic final match

In a match that could not have been packed with more drama, Ralf Souquet claims the title of the Dynamic France Open Champion 2011 with a 9-8 victory over Nick van den Berg.

Both players are well known for their top class pool. It is not for nothing that both of them have been teammates at the Mosconi Cup Team Europe, the team that won the title two months ago.

Nick had the better start and managed to get a two game lead over the German. Whatever Ralf tried, Nick had the answer for it. Van den Berg was ahead 4-2 when Souquet accomplished to equal the score to 4-4. Both players played with fewer mistakes than they did in their respective semifinal matches. After that, Nick again sneaked away with two racks leading 6-4. Trying to repeat the story, Ralf got back to 5-6 but then Nick played an epic push out that Ralf handed back. Everybody was wondering what Nick had in mind since there was a long straight shot at the 2-ball with no angle and no chance at all for position for the 3-ball. But the Dutchman proves everybody wrong. He pocketed the 2-ball and played a great safe on the 3-ball, forcing Ralf Souquet to commit a foul. Then Nick ran out, claiming a 7-5 lead over Souquet.

As the match went on, Nick won another rack to get on the hill 8-5 with Souquet to break next. Suddenly the situation changed dramatically and things went against Nick and for Ralf. Souquet broke and had a ball pocketed with a nice layout for him. 8-6. Then Nick scratched on his next break, leaving Ralf anther nice layout with ball in hand. 8-7. Finally, another break and run from Ralf to tie the score at 8-8! What a drama unfolded.

At the score of 8-8, Nick broke, pocketed a ball but had no shot on the 1-ball. He played another one of these push-outs, handing over the pressure to Ralf. After giving the situation very much consideration, Souquet decided to hand the shot (and the pressure) back to Nick. Van den Berg went for a very thin 1-ball and missed it, leaving almost the same shot for Souquet. Ralf in turn went for that shot, made it and ran out the rack to win the tournament.

When the final 9-ball fell in the pocket, the audience could witness an emotional Ralf Souquet screaming out his gladness. It was also very remarkable to see that Nick van den Berg took Ralf's hand like a boxer and lifted it up to demonstrate he is accepting his loss.

Tournament Top 16:


1. Ralf Souquet (GER)


2. Nick van den Berg (NED)


3. Niels Feijen (NED)


Kristoffer Mindreboe (NOR)


5. Scott Higgins (ENG)


Manuel Gama (POR)

Mattey Ullah (NOR)

Konstantin Stepanov (RUS)


9. Karl Boyes (ENG)


Stephan Cohen (FRA)

David Alcaide (SPA)

Carlo Dalmatin (CRO)

Radoslaw Babica (POL)

Artem Koshovyi (UKR)

Jayson Shaw (SCO)

Serge Das (BEL)