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Champions Advance On Day 2 of Predator World 8-Ball

Fedor Gorst

World No.1 Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz and current World Champions Shane Van Boening and Wojciech Szewczyk are all one win away from the last 32 single-elimination stage of the Predator World 8-Ball Championship at Puerto Rico Convention Center, San Juan.

Chang Jung-Lin, who is defending the title he won ten years ago, also remains on the winners’ side of the draw. The $250,000 event will award $60,000 to the new World Champion at the end of the event, which is part of the first annual Caribbean CueSports International Expo.

The World Juniors 9-Ball Championships will crown new World Champions in its Girls, Under-17s and Under-19s divisions on Monday, with all three finals to be broadcast live on the World Billiard TV YouTube Channel, Billiard TV, Zhibo.tv in China and on Liberty TV in Puerto Rico on Monday.

In the World 8-Ball Championship, Fedor Gorst will take on John Morra for a place in the last 32, with winners’ qualification matches set for 12 noon local time on Monday.

Gorst won 8-4 over Aloysius Yapp to move within one win of a place in the last 32. The pair split the first six racks before a break and run took Yapp ahead for the first time in the match at 4-3. However, he was forced to play safe in the next rack and Gorst was able to take out a 12/11 combo which opened the rack for the former World 9-Ball Champion.

A break and run saw Gorst restore his lead, and that advantage was extended to 6-4 with another runout. The hill was reached when Yapp, with few other options, scratched while attempting to masse on the 3. That meant Gorst was breaking for the match. The 12 went down on the break and he took care of the problem 9-ball early in his clearance, but he missed the 10 long. Yapp, though, then missed the 7 and the match belonged to Gorst.

Elsewhere, World 9-Ball Champion Van Boening earned progression to the winners’ qualification with an 8-3 win over Costa Rica’s Johnny Salas and will now face Wu Kun Lin for a place in the last 32. World 10-Ball Champion Wojciech Szewczyk defeated Hayato Hijikata 8-2 and faces Carlo Biado next, while WPA World No.1 Francisco-Sanchez Ruiz remained unbeaten with an 8-2 success over Max Lechner. Radoslaw Babica awaits the Spaniard on the winners’ side of the draw.

Puerto Rico’s Alan Rolon saw his World 8-Ball run come to an end at the hands of Wiktor Zielinski, despite having a vocal home crowd behind him. Alejandro Rodriguez is the last Puerto Rican standing and faces New Zealander Sullivan Clark tomorrow after banking the 8 for a hill-hill win over Florijan Maric which brought an eruption of joy from the large crowd which had gathered around his table late on Sunday evening.

All three divisions of the Predator World Juniors 9-Ball Championships are down to the semi-finals. In the girls division, Bethany Tate was delighted with her dramatic 9-8 win over Poland’s Dominica Pawelczyk.

“I feel on top of the world right now, especially with that out,” said Tate. “I went wrong on the 7-ball but I came back, it was crazy. I feel so jittery, it is hard to keep the emotions down. There is a lot of pressure when my family is watching me but knowing that they are there pushes me to do better.”

Tate will face Xin Yu Hong of Chinese Taipei for a place in the final, while Lina Primus will take on South Korea’s Kim Hyerim.

“I can’t wait to play the semi-finals,” said Primus, who won last year’s Girls title on home soil in Austria. “I am trying to give my best and of course I want to win it. I am relieved because there is a bit of pressure when you have to defend the title but tomorrow I will do what I do for every match and what I know is good for me and I hope that will work out. I can’t wait for tomorrow.”

In the Under-17s division, Jori Narvola defeated fellow Finnish junior Riku Rompannen 9-6 to set up a semi-final against Lang Yi Li of Hong Kong. Karl Gnadeberg of Estonia will face Serbia’s Lazar Kostic.

In the Under-19s division, Joey Tate was eliminated by Germany’s Yuma Dorner, who will face Yi Hsuan Sun of Chinese Taipei in the last four after the Asian junior defeated Dutchman Yannick Pongers 11-10.

The other semi-final will be contested between Germany’s Dennis Laszkowski and Szymon Kural. Laszkowski defeated Filipino Keane Derek Rota 11-3, while Kural was an 11-4 winner over Saudi Arabian Khalid Alghamdi.

Matches from the Predator World 8-Ball Championship are streamed from Table 1 on Billiard TV,  the World Billiard TV YouTube channel and at Kozoom.com. Table 2 has full coverage and commentary on the Predator Pro Billiard Series Facebook Page. All tables, including matches from the Predator World Juniors 9-Ball Championships, can be watch live for FREE at Kozoom.com

Brackets and scores can be found at www.probilliardseries.com

Follow @probilliardseries on Facebook, @probilliardseries on Instagram or @PBilliardSeries on Twitter.

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Yapp wins 9-ball and 10-ball events at $10K-added, 3rd Annual Meucci Classic

Silviana Lu and Aloysius Yapp

Silviana Lu wins Ladies 9-ball

Yep, Yapp won ‘em both. And his girlfriend, Silviana Lu won the other one. 

The 3rd Annual Meucci Classic at Racks Billiards Sports Bar & Grill in Sanford, FL this past weekend (Nov. 10-13) gave Singapore’s Aloysius Yapp his third and fourth 2022 event victory, which added to his already-best (recorded with us) earnings year since we recorded his first two cash winnings in September of 2012, a week apart; a 17th place finish at the Party Poker World Cup of Pool in Quezon City in the Philippines (won by Mika Immonen) and a week+ later, a 33rd place finish at the China Open in Shanghai (won by Dennis Orcollo). 

So, the Meucci Classic was nowhere near his first rodeo. By the same token, Yapp’s presence outside of a fairly consistent group of world-travelling pool professionals had him flying under a lot of the US pool-playing radar until he showed up in the finals of the 2021 US Open 9-Ball Championships in Atlantic City and battled in the finals (unsuccessfully) against Carlo Biado. He became a much more consistently-present figure for the rest of the year, with appearances in (among others) the American 14:1 Straight Pool Championships (9th), the International 9-Ball Open (17th), the International Open’s Big Foot 10-Ball (3rd behind Joshua Filler and Mika Immonen) and a win on the Predator US Pro Billiard Series in Battle Creek, Michigan.

He’s cashed in 19 events this year, winning four of them, runner-up in two and 3rd in three. He won this year’s Michigan Open and the Sandcastle Open before heading to the eastern shores of Virginia where he finished 9th at this year’s International Open 9-Ball tournament and was 3rd for the second time at the Big Foot 10-Ball event; this time, behind the juggernaut known as Fedor Gorst and Joshua Filler. He shuffled off to Sanford, FL last weekend, where he went undefeated through seven opponents, downing Austria’s Max Lechner twice; double hill in the hot seat match and 9-5 in the finals of the $4,000-added, 121-entrant 9-Ball tournament.

Left in the good-company dust (among others) were Austria’s Wiktor Zielinski, Poland’s Mieszko Fortunski, Germany’s Moritz Neuhausen, Finland’s Mika Immonen, Austria’s Mario He, Greece’s Alex Kazakis and Estonia’s Denis Grabe. Lithuania’s Pijus Labutis finished the tournament with the distinction of having won the most consecutive matches, 10 of them on the loss side, before he was stopped by Lechner in the semifinals. Leading the American charge for the title was BJ Ussery, Jr., who finished 4th; an outstanding finish for the South/mid-Atlantic competitor. Also in the US lineup were local stalwarts Anthony Meglino, Donny Mills, Mike Delawder, Raymond Linares, Bobby Garza and 1992’s US Open 9-Ball Champion, Tommy Kennedy.

The 3rd Annual Meucci Classic’s $5,000-added, 63-entrant 10-Ball Tournament was a different story. Same ending, just a different story. The 10-Ball battles preceded and overlapped the 9-Ball battles, so Yapp availed himself of the six-opponent practice opportunity, with an extra ball in the game, and went undefeated. He got by Poland’s Konrad Juszczyszyn and two Americans, George Saunders and Alan Rolon Rosado, to advance to the 16-player, single-elimination phase of the event. Yapp was joined in the winners’ side advancement by Wiktor Zielinski, Bosnia/Herzegovina’s Sanjin Pehlivanovich, Dmitri Loukatos, Taipei’s Jung Lin Chan and Jeffrey DeLuna. BJ Ussery, Jr., who’d go on to finish fourth in the 9-Ball competition, advanced, as did Donny Mills. Joining them from the loss side were Adam Wheeler, Max Lechner, Pijus Labutis (who would not get the most consecutive win prize in this event), Jani Uski, Mika Immonen, Mario He, David Singleton and Denis Grabe.

Ussery would engage in the only double hill battle of the single-elimination’s first round, against Jani Uski, and it would knock him out of the 10-Ball competition. Three of the four quarterfinal matches went double hill; Immonen over Uski, Yapp over Labutis, and Grabe over Lechner. Zielinski downed Pehlivanovic 11-5.

Zielinski ‘iced’ the Iceman, allowing him only a single rack in one of the semifinal matches, while Yapp was a little busier, eliminating Grabe 11-7. Yapp claimed the 10-Ball title with a stingy 11-3 victory over Zielinski.

Indonesia’s Silviana Lu goes undefeated, winning 81% of her 37 games to claim Ladies title

In this, her first year as a cash-winning player in our AZBilliards database, Indonesia’s Silviana Lu has cashed in only two events. She finished in a tie for 5th place at the Asian Pool Federation’s 9-Ball Open, Women’s Division in August. A month later, she finished in the tie for 9th place at the WPBA’s Michigan Open. Her boyfriend, Singapore’s Aloysius Yapp finished in the tie for 17th in the former event and won the latter.

She has recorded her first event victory with us as a result of going undefeated through a field of 27 entrants in the $1,000-added Ladies 9-Ball event. And she did so by defeating her six opponents with an 81% game-winning average (30-7), shutting out half of them and not allowing any of them to chalk up more than three against her; Nicolle Cuellar, who has Florida-area tour victories and cash finishes going back 10 years to the former Flamingo Tour.

Note to competitors looking to take advantage of the increased amount of money being offered at Scotch Doubles events across the country: In addition to the Fillers (Joshua and Pia) and the Fedor Gorst/Kristina Tkach pairing, you might want to watch out for the Yapp/Lu partnership.

Lu’s trip to the winners’ circle went through Marge Soash (0), Cuellar (3), Palmoa Santana (1) and Jessica Human (1) to arrive at the hot seat match versus Jennifer Berzinski to whom she gave up two racks to claim the seat. Adriana Villar, who lost her opening match to Cuellar and won eight on the loss side (shutting out three and surviving a double hill match against Helene Caukin), challenged Lu in the finals. Lu shut her out to claim the event title.

In addition to the 218 participants in the three events (with some duplication), tour representatives thanked title sponsor Meucci Cues, the ownership and staff at Rack’s for their hospitality, Outsville, JB Cases, Carlos Sanchez productions, Fort Worth Billiards Superstore and Clutch Shot Billiards Apparel.

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Fisher Fights Through As Medalla Light Puerto Rico Open Begins

Kelly Fisher

Four-time Predator Pro Billiard Series champion Kelly Fisher had to come from 3-2 down to eventually win the second set against 12-year-old American Savannah Easton and move to the winners’ qualification stage of the Medalla Light Puerto Rico Open.

At the impressively set-up Puerto Rico Convention Center in San Juan, 192 pro players from 44 countries opened the 2022 Caribbean CueSports International Expo on Tuesday. With $100,000 in the prize pot of the 128-player Open, and $75,000 for the 64-player Women’s event, the Medalla Light Puerto Rico Open is the final stop of the 2022 Predator Pro Billiard Series and will be followed in Puerto Rico by the Predator World Junior 9-Ball Championships and Predator World 8-Ball Championship.

In the Open event, Fedor Gorst, Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz and Darren Appleton won twice to reach winners’ qualification, the latter defeating Chang Jung-Lin 4-0, 4-1.

After beating Elise Qiu on a shootout at the start of the day, Fisher faced Easton on the TV table in her hunt for an unprecedented fifth Predator Pro Billiard Series title. Easton has been making waves this year, most recently taking fifth in the WPBA’s Sledgehammer Open in Bristol, TN last month.

The 12-year-old had seen off Emilyn Callado in straight sets in the opening round and earned a huge ovation from the Puerto Rican crowd for her efforts against Fisher, who was almost taken to shootout by the youngster nicknamed ‘Roadrunner’.

Having won the first set 4-2, Fisher took a 2-0 lead in the second. However, the American youngster, who will take part in the Predator World Junior 9-Ball Championships starting Friday, cut that lead in half after making the 5 with the bridge. Easton then leveled the set at 2-2 after a safety battle with just the 9 and 10 remaining and a long 8 opened up the fifth game of the set for the junior, who took a 3-2 lead.

A dry break from the hill allowed Fisher to play a safety which Easton couldn’t escape but ball in hand was returned by the Brit when she completely missed the 7. However, Easton left a long 9 in the jaw and Fisher was finally level again at hill-hill in the second set.

The final rack brought more drama as Easton battled for the shootout but the pressure showed as she overcut the 10. Both players had another chance to close out the set but it was Fisher who got over the line to advance to winners qualification tomorrow.

“What a great player, she has nerves of steel and definitely one to watch for the future,” said Fisher. “She should have had me there, it should have been a shootout. I was all over the place but she missed some crucial balls at the end.

“What a great future she knows she must have, she is a great player and we are going to see her in the future. I, personally, don’t want to play her again; she put me under pressure, she got me, could have had me, and I don’t want to play her again until she’s 18!”

“I was this close, I was so close,” said Easton. “In the first set when I was 2-2 I thought I might be able to beat her, and in the second set when it was 3-2 and I took that break, I was so excited but I tried to hold it in as much as I could. It was so fun, I couldn’t believe it.”

Fisher will now face Kristina Tkach for a place in the last 16. Yuki Hiraguchi of Japan will take on Chia Hua Chen after ‘Amber’ beat World Women’s 10-Ball Champion Chieh Yu-Chou in the opening round. Pia Filler, Tzu-Chien Wei, Kristina Zlateva, Jasmin Ouschan and Allison Fisher are among the other players still unbeaten in the women’s event.

In the men’s tournament, local favorite Alan Rolon was well-supported as he Wu Kun Lin by shootout and then Alex Montpellier to earn a day off and set up a winners’ qualification match against Badar Alawadhi on Thursday morning.

A strong field spelt early casualties as the likes of Ko Ping-Han, Aloysius Yapp and Ko Pin-Yi all lost in the first round and now face a long road to reach the last 32 and single elimination.

The Medalla Light Puerto Rico Open continues from 10am AST on Wednesday with six more matches streamed from Table 1 on Billiard TV,  the World Billiard TV YouTube channel and at Kozoom.com. Table 2 has full coverage and commentary on the Predator Pro Billiard Series Facebook Page. All tables can be watch live for FREE at Kozoom.com

Brackets and scores can be found at www.probilliardseries.com

Follow @probilliardseries on Facebook, @probilliardseries on Instagram or @PBilliardSeries on Twitter.

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Recapping The Special Year of Three-Time Predator Pro Billiard Series Fedor Gorst

Fedor Gorst

2022 has been a special year for Fedor Gorst, who has taken home his fair share of championship glory here in 2022. 

The 22-year-old started the year on a high note by emerging victorious in the 2022 Arcadia Arizona Open in January, which netted him $25,000. Gorst was also the winner of the inaugural Arcadia Open back in 2021.

Continuing with his strong year, Gorst was this year’s winner of the U.S. Open 10-Ball Championship to claim the main $9,100 prize. Gorst finished ahead of Lee Vann Corteza,  who pocketed $4,600 in prize money. 

It was not a surprise that after the Copper State launched legalized sports betting in September of last year, the odds for Gorst and several other sporting events got covered by the sportsbooks in Arizona. 

Big names like DraftKings, FanDuel, Caesars and BetMGM and well, taking into consideration that these are the biggest names covering the Super Bowl 57 that will be taking place at State Farm Stadium (home of the Cardinals) in Glendale, Arizona on Feb. 12, it is clear that Gorst’s victory got backed-up by big names in the industry, while placing his own at the top.

Gorst’s incredible 2022 campaign continued into the month of October. 

The Moscow, Russia native was also victorious at the FargoRate Ohio Open. There, Gorst managed to get past legend Roberto Gomez to claim the $25,000 prize. It marked a milestone victory for Gorst, who also became the first man to win three Predator Pro Billiard championships.

Coming into this tournament, Gorst and 26-year-old Aloysius Yapp (the winner of the 2021 and 2022) were the two men to have won multiple titles in the Pro Billiards Series.

Gorst Eyes Unprecedented Fourth Title At Medalla Lite Puerto Rico Open

There isn’t much more for Gorst to prove this year. The 22-year-old has pieced together one of the greatest individual seasons in the Pro Billiards Series.

But of course, he can add even more to his special trophy room with a victory at the Medalla Lite Puerto Rico Open, the last scheduled tournament of the US Pro Billiard Series for 2022.

The Medalla Lite Puerto Rico Open will be held from Nov. 15-18 at the Puerto Rico Convention Center in San Juan. The event will be limited to 128 players, and the winner will take home the special grand prize of $100,000.

Gorst, Yapp & Gomez Headline Favorites For Medalla Lite Puerto Rico Open 

Gorst will be among the premier favorites to win the last tournament here in 2022. He has a whopping 639 points (320 in tournament points and 319 in FargoRate), and he’s finished top 10 in each of his last six tournaments.

The previously mentioned Yapp and Gomez should also be considered strong favorites to win the Medalla Lite Puerto Rico Open.

If there’s one person who can seriously push Gorst for that No. 1 ranking, it’s Yapp (second). He has 606 points (320 of them are tournament points). After finishing ninth in the 2021 Las Vegas Open, Yapp followed it up with a victory at the Michigan Open to claim the $12,000 prize.

Yapp finished second at this year’s Apex Wisconsin Open 2022, losing to 31-year-old Alex Kazakis (previously the No. 1 ranked player by the WPA). Yapp was also the runner-up at the 2022 Las Vegas Open, which was won by 21-year-old Wiktor Zielinski.

As previously noted, Yapp won this year’s CSI Michigan Open to win the $20,000 grand prize. He finished ninth at the FarGoGate Ohio Open, taking him $1,500 in winnings.

The No. 4 ranked Gomez is cruising with 506 total points, and he’s had four top-three finishes dating back to the 2021 Arizona Open (third at that tournament, second at both the Michigan and Ohio Open and second at this year’s FargoRate Ohio Open).

Gorst will certainly have a strong level of competition at the Medalla Lite Puerto Rico Open, no doubt. But if he can add a fourth title to his trophy room? It would make an already incredible 2022 season that much sweeter.

International Open Advances 16 to Single Elimination Phase

JIC series begins its 18 & Under Boys and Girls Championships 

The winners’ side final 8 has been set for the beginning of the single elimination phase of the International Open’s 9-Ball tournament tomorrow (Fri., Nov. 4). As this report is being compiled (10 p.m., Thursday night), the eight competitors who will advance to the final 16 from the loss side are still competing. If Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz emerges victorious from his match against Bader Alawahdi, the final 16 in the event will contain seven of the top eight finishers (half the field) from the recently-concluded Big Foot 10-Ball Challenge, including Fedor Gorst, who won it and runner-up Joshua Filler.

Also advancing from the winners’ side into the final 16 will be Albin Ouschan, Wictor Zielinski, Jayson Shaw, Konrad Juszczyszyn, Roberto Gomez, and Alex Kazakis.

Already advancing from the loss side are Aloysius Yapp, who (very) recently defeated Jesus Atencio 10-8 and Mario He, who downed Sky Woodward 10-4. Still to be decided were matches between Robbie Capito/Ko Pin Yi, Jonas Souto/Noayuki Oi, Jani Uski/Moritz Neuhausen, Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz/Bader Alawahdi, Ping Chung Ko/Mieszko Fortunski and David Alcaide/Abdullah Alyousef

JIC underway; Boys will play winners’ side final four and 7/8 matches, Girls to play hot seat and quarterfinals

A total of 16 boys (18 & Under) and 8 girls (18 & Under) came to Norfolk to compete in the final events of the 2022 Junior International Championship series. In the course of the eight-event season, which began in January, the competitors amassed points which, at the end of the eighth stop on the series, yielded a ‘top players’ list, which led to invitations to the Championship events for the 18 & Under Boys and Girls. 

Both of those events got underway today, Thursday, Nov. 3. At the end of the day, there were six boys and four girls left. The top two girls in the year-long rankings – Bethany Tate #1 and Sofia Mast #2 – will square off tomorrow afternoon (Friday, Nov. 4; 2 p.m.) in the 18 & Under Girls hot seat match. At noon, Precilia Kinsley and Noelle Tate will square off in the quarterfinals, to be followed by the semifinals at 7 p.m., pitting whoever did not claim the hot seat and the winner of the quarterfinals. The finals are scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 5 at noon.

At 10 a.m., tomorrow morning (Friday), the #2 and #3-ranked competitors from the 18 & Under Boys division – Landon Hollingsworth and Payne McBride will meet in one of the winners’ side semifinals. In the other one, #13 Garrett Vaughan and #15 Justin Maywin will meet. On the loss side, also at 10 a.m., playing in the two 7/8 matches, the #1-ranked Joey Tate will meet the #14-ranked Logan Whitaker.

Of the remaining six, three of them (Worth, McBride & Tate) competed in the International Open’s 9-Ball Tournament, with Brent Worth drawing what was arguably the toughest draw. He faced Hall of Fame German Ralf Souquet in the opening round and then, on the loss side, faced and lost to former junior competitor Chris Reinhold. McBride lost a winners’ side match to one of the semifinalists in last week’s American 14.1 Straight Pool Championship, Mieszko Fortunski and fell to Alecsa Pecelj on the loss side. Tate lost to Abdullah Alyousef on the winners’ side and Sullivan Clark on the loss side.

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Gorst Wins FargoRate Ohio Open For Third Predator Pro Billiard Series Title

Fedor Gorst

Fedor Gorst defeated Roberto Gomez to win the FargoRate Ohio Open and become the first man to win three Predator Pro Billiard Series titles, while his Filipino opponent has now lost in three finals on this series.

Gorst won a hill-hill second set to clinch the title 4-2, 4-3 and avoid the shootout Gomez was fighting for until he scratched with the second set in sight. It means Gorst takes home $25,000 and adds the Ohio title to those won in Arizona in January this year and August of 2021. Aloysius Yapp won last month’s Seybert’s Michigan Open to join Gorst in having won two men’s Pro Billiard Series titles, but Gorst now stands alone with three; Kelly Fisher has won four times in Women’s Pro Billiard Series events.

For Gomez, it is another second place on the Predator Pro Billiard Series. He was runner-up here and in Michigan last year and came close to forcing the shootout in Saturday’s final at the Roberts Center in Wilmington, Ohio. 

The Filipino won the first rack of the match before Gorst took a 2-1 lead in the opening set. Gomez pulled it back to 2-2 when Gorst failed to thinly cut the 7 but a dry break brought Gorst back from his chair. A 7/10 combo took the former World Champion to the hill of the first set and he ran the next rack to take a 1-0 lead at the halfway stage. 

The first rack of the second set belonged to Gorst but when he couldn’t jump the 1 it looked like Gomez would have an opening. However, the Filipino missed a long 9 and Gorst capitalized to take a 2-0 lead.

With the match slipping from his grasp, Gomez needed something and his opponent’s dry break provided a chance to cut the deficit in half. This time Gomez made no mistake and he ran the fourth rack to level the set at 2-2. The Filipino then lead for the first time since the first rack of the match, reaching the hill 3-2 up and one away from a shootout.

He had an immediate chance to complete the set with a 1/10 carom presenting itself after the break, but Gomez couldn’t take it down. However, Gorst then left the 1 for Gomez, only for the Filipino to fail on the 3. That brought Gorst back and there were no further errors as he leveled the set with a 9/10 combo. 

A dry break handed the table to Gomez but he didn’t control the speed of the cue and scratched on the 4. That gave Gorst a chance to clear for the match and after he used the 8 to guide the 5 to the top corner, the table was open. The two-time Pro Billiard Series champion cleared the table to lift his third trophy on this series.

“It has been a complete rollercoaster,” said Gorst. “Especially in the final, I didn’t play my best game but it is almost always like this in the finals. The tournament has been crazy, I have had a lot of shootouts and almost lost twice, against Alex Kazakis and Sullivan Clark.”

Gorst took less than one hour to complete a 4-0, 4-0 semi-final wipeout of Estonia’s Denis Grabe, a far cry from the shootout win he’d had against Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz in Friday’s quarter-final. For Gomez, the last hurdle before the final was Eklent Kaci

The Albanian took the first set 4-2 but Gomez earned the shootout with a 4-1 second set. Both players scored their first three spot shots but both then missed on their fourth visit. Kaci then failed for a second time and Gomez converted for a place in the final. 

The final Predator Pro Billiard Series events of 2022 take place in Puerto Rico, November 15 through 22 as part of the CueSports International Caribbean Expo. The Medalla Light Puerto Rico Open and Women’s Open will be followed by the Predator World 8-Ball Championship and the Predator World Junior 9-Ball Championships.

Brackets and scores can be found at https://probilliardseries.com/2022-fargorate-ohio-open/

Follow @probilliardseries on Facebook, @probilliardseries on Instagram or @PBilliardSeries on Twitter.

The Predator U.S. Pro Billiard Series by CSI feature six open professional events during the calendar year. Created by league operator CueSports International together with the Predator Group, these tournaments will run in tandem alongside of CSI league events being held throughout the country. The winner of each competition receives a guaranteed spot in the following year Predator World 10-Ball Championship, which will be held during the annual CueSports International Expo in Las Vegas at the Rio Hotel and Casino.

These events are played on Predator Apex professional tables covered with Predator Arcadia Reserve Performance Cloth, with Predator Arcos II balls, and under the Predator Arena billiard lights.

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Four Through In Ohio

Jung-Lin Chang

Alex Kazakis, Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz, Mario He and Seybert’s Michigan Open champion Aloysius Yapp are through to the last 16 of the FargoRate Ohio Open, but big names including all three Ko brothers are already heading home.

Fedor Gorst will face Mika Immonen in winners’ qualification on Friday morning but Albin Ouschan, Robbie Capito and Wiktor Zielinski have been eliminated from the event, which carries a $75,000 prize fund and is played alongside the CSI Ohio State Championships at the Roberts Center in Wilmington, Ohio.

Ouschan suffered a shootout defeat to Finnish youngster Riku Romppanen and was then eliminated 4-3, 4-0 by Eklent Kaci. Romppanen takes on Roberto Gomez tomorrow morning for a place in the last 16, while Kaci must beat Predator World 10-Ball Champion Wojciech Szewczyk to remain in the event.

Four winners’ qualification matches have already played, with the remaining four to take place at 10am on Friday. Kazakis defeated David Alcaide 4-1, 4-3 for his place in the last 16, leaving the Spaniard with one more chance to qualify.

“I am feeling really happy that I won that match,” said Kazakis. “First set everything went my way, and in the second set it went both ways. David had a chance to run out at hill-hill but he missed it and I took my chance.”

Sanchez-Ruiz won 4-3, 4-3 over America’s Justin Martin while Aloysius Yapp, a two-time winner on the Predator Pro Billiard Series, defeated Finland’s Jani Uski 4-2, 4-3. Last year’s Fargorate Ohio Open champion Mario He needed a shootout to advance at the expense of Michael Schneider. The four players already qualified for single elimination share four Pro Billiard Series titles, with only Sanchez-Ruiz yet to win a stop.

Brothers Ko Ping Han, Ko Pin-Yi and Ko Ping-Chung were all eliminated within hours of each other. Ping Han had suffered shootout defeat to Petri Makkonen on Wednesday and was again beaten from the spot on Thursday, this time by Badar Al Qrrayyan. Defeat yesterday to Jan van Lierop had left Pin-Yi on the losers’ side, where a 4-1, 4-1 win for Sharik Sayed meant that Ping-Chung was now the only member of the Ko family still in the event.

However, Ping-Chung was soon eliminated too. His tournament had opened with a shootout defeat to Robbie Capito on Wednesday. He responded with a 4-3, 4-1 win against Sanjin Pehlivanovic only to lose by shootout to New Zealand’s Sullivan Clark.

Zielinski’s tournament came to an end against Chang Jung-Lin, who won 4-2, 4-3 in the day’s final match on the TV table. Chang missed a 4 ball at 3-2 up in the second set, allowing his Polish opponent to level the match at 3-3, however when Zielinski missed the 5, Chang was back at the table and won the rack to avoid a shootout. Chang requires two more wins to reach the single elimination stage and faces Dimitri Jungo in his next match.

Among the other players coming back on the losers’ side is Konrad Juszczyszyn, who will face Aleksa Pecelj after beating Ernesto Dominguez in a lengthy shootout. Juszczyszyn took the first set 4-2 but a 4-0 shutout in the second took the match to a shootout. Neither player missed in their first four shots, before both missed their next two sudden death efforts. Another successful spot shot each took the shootout to 7-7, but Dominguez missed his next shot after Juszczyszyn had already sunk his.

The FargoRate Ohio Open continues from 10am ET on Friday with six matches streamed free on Billiard TV,  the World Billiard TVYouTube channel and at Kozoom.com

Brackets and scores can be found at https://probilliardseries.com/2022-fargorate-ohio-open/

Follow @probilliardseries on Facebook, @probilliardseries on Instagram or @PBilliardSeries on Twitter.

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He Starts FargoRate Ohio Open Defense As Big Names Defeated On Day One

Mario He

Defending champion Mario He is through to the winners’ qualification round of this year’s FargoRate Ohio Open but some of pool’s biggest names crashed to the losers side on the opening day of play at the Roberts Center in Wilmington, Ohio.

Played alongside the CSI Ohio State Championships, the FargoRate Ohio Open has a $75,000 prize fund and is streamed live on the World Billiard TV YouTube channel and at Watchbilliard.tv.

He began his tournament with a 4-1, 4-3 win against Lian Han Toh. Germany Open winner Dimitris Loukatos was waiting in the next round. The Austrian took the first set 4-1 and was playing well to reach the hill 3-0 in the second set before he missed an easy 4. Loukatos cleared the table but his hopes of a comeback were ended by a dry break and He completed the set for a 4-1, 4-1 win.

He faces Michael Schneider next and said: “I got a little injured so I cannot walk fast but I am feeling good and playing good at the moment. I will try my best to get deep and maybe defend my title.”

Some big names have found themselves on the losers’ side early in the tournament, such is the quality of this week’s field. Ko Ping Han and Ko Pin Yi may have to face each other on Thursday after both lost shootouts in the opening round. Ping Han was beaten 2-4, 4-3, 4-2 by Petri Makkonen after missing the 9 at hill-hill in the second set, while Pin Yi was beaten 4-3, 3-4, 6-5 by Dutchman Jan van Lierop.

World 10-Ball Champion Wojiech Szewczyk was beaten by Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz, Darren Appleton lost a shootout to Kang Lee, and Wiktor Zielinski suffered defeat to Albin Ouschan.

Eklent Kaci was beaten 4-3, 4-1 by Chang Jung-Lin, who himself later lost to Justin Martin. The 23-year-old from North Carolina took the first set against Chang 4-1 and the second 4-2, and will face Sanchez-Ruiz in winners’ qualification tomorrow. “This is a huge win for me because I have an insane amount of respect for Chang,” said Martin. “I played solid throughout and was blessed to have enough chances to win the match.”

The players yet to suffer defeat now have two chances to qualify for the last 16. Alex Kazakis faces David Alcaide in the winners’ qualification round, Seybert’s Michigan Open winner Aloysius Yapp will take on Jani Uski while Fedor Gorst will face Mika Immonen on Friday.

The FargoRate Ohio Open continues from 10am ET on Thursday with six matches streamed free on Billiard TV,  the World Billiard TVYouTube channel and at Kozoom.com

Brackets and scores can be found at https://probilliardseries.com/2022-fargorate-ohio-open/

Follow @probilliardseries on Facebook, @probilliardseries on Instagram or @PBilliardSeries on Twitter.

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Only 16 Remain At US Open Pool Championship With Van Boening Out

Alex Kazakis (Taka G Wu/Matchroom Multi Sport)

Shane Van Boening crashed out of the 2022 US Open Pool Championship in a hill-hill defeat to Alexander Kazakis as only 16 remain at Harrah’s Resort, Atlantic City ahead of the final two days of action.

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Van Boening began the day on the hunt for a record-breaking sixth US Open but it was the case of the champagne being put on ice for at least another year. The World Champion came up Kazakis in full steam ahead mode as the Greek rattled up a 5-0 lead without breaking stride against the American great. Kazakis has had mixed fortune against Van Boening in recent times, defeating him in the final of the 2021 World Pool Masters in a whitewash before tasting defeat at the World Pool Championship semi-final stage back in April.

Kazakis lost his way in the middle of the match as Van Boening rallied to 5-5 and soon 7-5 to lead with an opportunity to reach the hill first. A scratch on the break for Van Boening though brought Kazakis back into it and 7-7. In the next rack, Kazakis missed the two ball and Van Boening reached the hill first.

At times, Kazakis has been doubted and questioned but today wasn’t going to be one of those days, back at the table at 8-8 breaking for the match, he was hooked when looking to make the two ball. One bank later from Kazakis and the table was clear for him to run out and secure a memorable win. For Van Boening, the wait goes on but all is not lost with the conclusion of the inaugural SVB Junior Open set to unfold tomorrow afternoon.

In the last 64, saw Jayson Shaw toppled by Lee Vann Corteza 9-2 whilst Wojciech Szewczyk downed Albin Ouschan. David Alcaide fell down to Ko Ping Chung 9-5 with one of the stories of the stage coming from Table 1 live on the Matchroom Pool Facebook where Tyler Styer staked his claim for a Mosconi Cup spot on Team USA by ending Fedor Gorst‘s hopes of reaching the next round 9-7. It was a watershed showing from Styer but he faced Joshua Filler to reach the Last 16. Last year’s runner-up Aloysius Yapp was spectacularly knocked out by Sanjin Pehlivanovic 9-1.

Skyler Woodward will have mixed emotions after today after the two-time Mosconi Cup MVP fell at the hands of Chang Jung-Lin who was on a rampage at times in a 9-4 win but with results going his way, the Kentucky Kid ensured a Mosconi Cup automatic spot to avoid leaving it up to Jeremy Jones‘ wild card picks. Greg Hogue was also in the Mosconi Cup reckoning for an automatic spot until defeat to Marc Bijsterbosch saw the American bow out 9-2. That news was good for Oscar Dominguez though who will return to the Mosconi Cup for the first time in five years off the Live Nineball World Rankings.

Francisco Sanchez Ruiz had a day to remember, before he even played Ralf Souquet in the Last 64, he knew he would be making his Mosconi Cup debut for Team Europe come November 30 to December 3 as the Spaniard secured the second automatic spot off the Live Nineball World Rankings due to Ouschan’s defeat to Szewczyk. On a high, Sanchez Ruiz took down Souquet and Wu Kun Lin to reach the Last 16.

Styer’s journey ended at the hands of Mosconi Cup foe Filler leaving his Mosconi Cup hopes in Jones’ hands. The American put on a gutsy display to push Filler all the way before the World Pool Masters champion pulled away to a 9-6 win.

Defending champion Carlo Biado will go again on his hunt for the crown in back-to-back years against Konrad Juszczyszyn. Biado coming through in a repeat of last year’s semi-final against Naoyuki Oi 9-6.

The Union Jack of Great Britain will be kept flying tomorrow by Chris Melling who is experiencing something of a renaissance in the Diamond Arena. Melling seeing off Joven Bustamante 9-4 before an impressive 9-1 win over Badar Alawadhi. The Magician’s match-up with Corteza will kick off the TV coverage tomorrow from 10am ET.
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TV Table (SEE BELOW WHERE TO WATCH TV TABLE) 

Chris Melling (GBR) vs Lee Vann Corteza (PHI)

Joshua Filler (GER) vs Eklent Kaçi (ALB)

Table 1 – Matchroom.Live and Facebook 

Ko Ping Chung (TPE) vs Jani Uski (FIN)

Hsieh Chia Chen (TPE) vs Mario He (AUT)

Francisco Sanchez Ruiz (ESP) vs Chang Jung-Lin (TPE)

Table 2 – Matchroom.Live and Facebook

Max Lechner (AUT) vs Roland Garcia (PHI)

Alexander Kazakis (GRE) vs Marc Bijsterbosch (NED)

Carlo Biado (PHI) vs Konrad Juszczyszyn (POL)

From tomorrow, the TV table will be live on Sky Sports in the UK, DAZN in the USA, Canada, Brazil, Spain, and Italy as well as Viaplay in Scandinavia, the Baltics and Poland, and other broadcasters worldwide which can be found here including on Matchroom.Live in countries without a broadcaster.

Tickets for the final day are now sold out. Sign up for 2023 Ticket Alerts here

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Yapp backs up Michigan Open win with undefeated run at Sandcastle Open

Jung-Lin Chang, Ed Liddawi and Aloysius Yapp

It’s that time of year. When the leaves start to turn in northern parts of the USA, you can bet pool players from all over the world are starting to gather at a series of pool tournaments leading up to Matchroom Sports US Open, now underway (Oct. 10) at Harrah’s Resort in Atlantic City, or Pat Fleming’s International Open later in the month. It’s a combination of things, really. It’s not just that savvy promoters and independent event folk position themselves to take advantage of the incoming players, it’s also about these players positioning themselves to compete in the US Open and/or International Open and in some cases, to elevate their Matchroom Sports 9-Ball ranking for a shot to be on either the European or USA Mosconi Cup Teams. 

Latest in the line of events that could impact the choices made by the Mosconi Cup captains Jeremy Jones (US) and Alex Ley (Europe), was this past (early) weekend’s (Oct. 6-8) Sandcastle 9-Ball Open in Edison, NJ, where the aforementioned players from all over the world, 64 of them, came together to compete. With Shane Van Boening and Joshua Filler having secured the first spots on Team USA and Europe, respectively, the most likely candidates for the two remaining automatic picks for team Europe were Spain’s Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz and Austria’s Albin Ouschan. With Ouschan not in attendance in New Jersey, Francisco, who did compete, moved ahead of him (for the moment) to secure the second spot on the list. There is a possibility that dependent on how Ouschan and Sanchez-Ruiz finish in the US Open that they could switch positions (3rd/4th), but they’d still be in the last two spots for the automatic Team Europe pick.

One of the two potential picks for Team USA (aside from Van Boening) did compete in the Sandcastle Open (Sky Woodward), while the other (Oscar Dominguez) did not. Given their relative positions on the WPBA ranking list, they are both poised to be the last two automatic picks for the team. All of the above players are currently in Atlantic City and though the three  automatic picks are fairly secure for both teams, the two remaining spots (to be made by the team captains) are still up for grabs and many of the potential candidates are hoping to impress one or the other captains with their performance(s) at the US Open.

One of the names not in contention for either Mosconi Cup team went undefeated at the Sandcastle Open; Singapore’s Aloysius Yapp. In the finals, Yapp defeated Chinese Tapei’s Chang Jung-Lin, who had eliminated the Philippines’ Lee Van Corteza in the semifinals. They, too, have joined the 128-entrant field in Atlantic City this week.

Yapp’s path to the winners’ circle began with a double hill battle against Chinese Tapei’s Ko Ping-Han. Once he successfully navigated that potential ‘side track,’ Yapp downed two straight Americans, Billy Thorpe (7-2) and Mhet Vergara (7-3), to arrive at a winners’ side semifinal against Austria’s Mario He, who, just below Ouschan and Sanchez-Ruiz on the WPA ranking list, was (and is) looking to make an impression on Team Europe’s captain and perhaps earn himself a pick for the team. 

Lee Van Corteza, in the meantime, had something of an opposite problem on his trip to the hot seat match. He got by Aidan Wagner 7-4, Naoyuki Oi 7-5, shut out Liu Ri Teng and defeated Carlo Biado 7-1 to arrive at his winners’ side semifinal against Moritz Neuhausen, who put up a double hill fight that did eventually advance Corteza to the hot seat match. Yapp joined him after defeating Jung-Lin 7-5, and then claimed the hot seat over Van Corteza by the same score.

Jung-Lin moved over and picked up countryman Wu Kun Lin, who’d eliminated Sanchez-Ruiz 7-3 and in a double hill match, Biado, to reach him. Newhausen drew Konrad Juszczyszyn, who was working on a seven-match, loss-side run that was about to end. He’d recently defeated Ronald Regli 7-5 and in another double hill match, Sky Woodward.

Jung-Lin downed Kun Lin 7-4 and was joined in the quarterfinals by Neuhausen, who’d stopped Juszczyszyn’s streak 7-5. Jung-Lin ended Neuhausen’s single-match loss-side streak 7-4 in those quarterfinals and completed his single-loss work with a 7-3 victory over Van Corteza in the semifinals.

The rematch of the winners’ side semifinal – Yapp versus Jung-Lin  – lived up to expectations. The final went double hill before Yapp prevailed, adding to his already-best (recorded) earnings year to date. The two could meet again at the ongoing US Open, as could any number of possible combinations between those who signed on to both events. The Open is the last of Matchroom Sports’ ranking events, so the two automatic picks for the Mosconi Cup will be determined in the days ahead.

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