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Carlo Biado Wins The US Open Pool Championship

Carlo Biado has won The US Open Pool Championship beating Aloysius Yapp at Harrah’s Resort, Atlantic City in partnership with Caesars Entertainment and the Atlantic City Sports Commission.

RESULT – Carlo Biado 13-8 Aloysius Yapp

Biado started the final the strongest of the pair going into a quick 2-0 lead with back-to-back break and runs. The Filipino got the crowd going in the third after jumping the four to cut the one in, but it was Yapp who took it to trail 2-1 early on.

Yapp broke in the fourth but struggled for any position off it leaving a simple 1 2 combo to allow Biado the chance to run the rack and have the break in the fifth. It was Biado’s turn to find himself stuck off the break and Yapp was soon back at the table where he executed the perfect table length bank on the 2 as he cut Biado’s lead to one rack.

As ever in the tournament so far, Yapp never looked fazed by his opponent’s pedigree racing into a 5-3 lead to put some breathing space between the pair for the first time in the contest. In the ninth rack it was all about safety as they did battle early on before eventually, Biado drew a foul from Yapp.

Yapp began to put daylight between the pair putting Biado in all sorts of trouble in the 10th rack where the two were tied up by the seven and with that Yapp lead 7-3. Yapp soon missed the nine which could’ve made it 9-3 and that’s when the contest turned entirely in Biado’s favour.

Biado ran the following two racks after the nine to only trail by two at 8-6. A pivotal moment coming in the following rack where Biado jumped the six effortlessly to pocket the one and soon pull it to 8-7. It was Biado’s fifth successive rack to make it eight all and soon Yapp was staring down the barrel of defeat.

Perhaps left cold after being sat at his corner for a while, Yapp had his chance when tied but he drew the cue ball the length of the table on the two scratching and allowing Biado to the table to take the lead for the first time since being 3-2 up.

At 10-8 up, Biado once again broke out the jump cue to pocket the one expertly and the bags of experience showed as he closed out the contest.

Everything was relatively plain sailing for Biado from there on getting onto the hill before missing what could’ve been a costly 1 9 combo in what was ultimately the last rack as Biado became the first Filipino to win the US Open Pool Championship since Efren Reyes.

Yapp said: “I am lost for words. I feel grateful to be in the final and all the fans have been awesome so thank you. I know I can do it; I am coming back stronger next year.”

Biado was elated with his win and struggled to hold back the tears: “I am very happy because this event is one of my dreams. I dedicate this to my family and to my baby. Thank you to all of you even during the pandemic you’re still here watching around the world. Thank you to Matchroom, my sponsors, and all of the Filipinos who support me always everywhere.”

The 2021 US Open Pool Championship will be partnered by Diamond, who supply the Official Table; the Official Cloth is supplied by Iwan Simonis and the Official Balls are ARAMITH Tournament BLACK pool ball set with Duramith™ Technology by Saluc. Predator is the Official Cue of the event and Kamui are the Official Chalk and Tip. The US Open Pool Championship is sanctioned by the WPA.

Only four remain at US Open Pool Championship with Yapp, Orcollo, Biado and Oi through

Carlo Biado (Jake Asby/Matchroom Multi Sport)

Aloysius Yapp, Dennis Orcollo, Carlo Biado, and Naoyuki Oi are the four remaining players at the US Open Pool Championship heading into the final day of play at Harrah’s Resort, Atlantic City.

Yapp has been a breakout star of recent months and continued from beating Shane Van Boening earlier today to beat Rodrigo Geronimo of the Philippines to book the first space in tomorrow’s semi-finals where he will take on Orcollo.

The Singapore cueist passed up on some early opportunities including a miss on the seven which gave Geronimo the early advantage, but those early shakes were soon a thing of the past in the fourth rack after kicking the two into the middle pocket. Early exchanges went back and forth with Geronimo edging ahead going into the tenth rack, but Yapp took hold of proceedings from there on in. A 5 9 combo was Yapp’s first of the day having missed one earlier in the match and earlier in the day against Van Boening.

Yapp laid a three-rack cushion at 8-5 before playing arguably the biggest shot of the match. He played a sublime cut on the eight before a bank in the middle pocket on the nine despite the odds stacked against him.

It was error-strewn from Geronimo at times and that was ultimately his downfall as Yapp got on the hill from his opponent’s failed bank on the three. The victory was swiftly secured for Yapp to be in his second semi-final in the space of a week.

The experienced Orcollo stands in the way of Yapp making a maiden final berth at a Matchroom Pool Series tournament after the Filipino beat the industrious Max Lechner 11-7 live on Matchroom Pool’s YouTube channel.

Oi sent 2019 World Champion Fedor Gorst packing in the final match of the day on the main table 11-9. Oi produced brilliance throughout the match with an early highlight coming in the fifth with the finest piece of creativity to make a 1 9 combo with a kick into the middle pocket.

Gorst kept pace with Oi and levelled at four all after fluking the eight. In the 15th rack, Gorst dry broke and Oi picked up the rack to lead 9-6. It wasn’t quite the end for Gorst though, he got it back to 9-9 after some smart safety. In the end, Oi was too strong as he booked his place in the semi-finals.

Biado booked his place in the semi-finals against Oi after beating compatriot Johann Gonzales Chua 11-10 live on the Matchroom Pool YouTube channel. Chua pulled it back on several occasions before pulling through in the final rack at hill-hill to become the final player into the semi-finals meaning it will be the first all-Asian US Open Pool Championship final in history.

SEMI-FINAL FIXTURES (10 am ET)

Aloysius Yapp vs Dennis Orcollo
Carlo Biado vs Naoyuki Oi

WATCH

Fans can take in Table 1 live on the TV broadcast wherever you are in the world on DAZN in the USA, Canada, Brazil, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, and Sky Sports in the UK. Find out where you can watch the US Open Pool Championship in your country right here.

Ticket prices start from $31.24 per session for the final day of the US Open Pool Championship.

Get your tickets here. 

The 2021 US Open Pool Championship will be partnered by Diamond, who supply the Official Table; the Official Cloth is supplied by Iwan Simonis and the Official Balls are ARAMITH Tournament BLACK pool ball set with Duramith™ Technology by Saluc. Predator is the Official Cue of the event and Kamui are the Official Chalk and Tip. The US Open Pool Championship is sanctioned by the WPA.

US Open Pool Championship Down To 8 With Van Boening Out

Aloysius Yapp

Home favourite Shane Van Boening is out of the US Open Pool Championship at Harrah’s Resort, Atlantic City at the Last 16 stage as Singapore’s Aloysius Yapp secured a comprehensive 11-5 victory over the five-time champion.

Van Boening went into the penultimate day with eyes firmly set on becoming the most successful player ever at the US Open but Yapp came to spoil the party on the TV table winning the lag and proceeding to break and run in the opening two racks.

It was all one-way traffic as Yapp marched into a 5-0 lead before drama struck in the sixth rack when a discussion took place over whether a shot clock extension had been called before the clock was reset and Van Boening continued the rack.

Yapp continued his ascendancy to an eight-nil lead where Van Boening finally got to show a piece of brilliance taking the ball around two rails after potting the one to get back in position for the table. The American made the next three racks to force a fightback but in truth, it was a tall order against a confident Yapp fresh off the back of finishing runner-up at the World 10-ball last week. He went on the hill at 10-3 before Van Boening took two racks but it wasn’t to be as Yapp sealed a place in the quarter-finals 11-5.

Max Lechner continued his impressive debut by being the first name into the quarters by beating Poland’s Mieszko Fortuński 11-4 to set up a tantalizing clash with Dennis Orcollo. Orcollo overcame Mario He 11-6 live on the Matchroom Pool YouTube as the Filipino joined compatriot Rodrigo Geronimo in the last eight.

Geronimo was involved in one of the biggest battles of the last 16 against Denis Grabe who was fresh off beating former champion Jayson Shaw. It went to hill hill with Geronimo fluking a safety with three balls on the table in the last rack. Grabe scratched after hitting the seven leading to Geronimo having ball in hand to clear up and win.

After the first spectacle on Table 1, there was a lot for David Alcaide and Carlo Biado to live up to and they did just that in a thriller that saw Biado come out on top 11-10 in a dramatic contest. Punches were thrown from each side as they level pegged at various points from 1-1 to 3-3 to 4-4, 6-6, 7-7, 9-9 before going hill hill.

Biado had turned things around against Alcaide before nearly letting it slip at 9-9. A straight miss on the six put Alcaide back at the table who found himself breaking for the match in the last rack, but the Spaniard found himself positionally out of sorts from the break as he missed the two ball as he tried to cut it.

Naoyuki Oi came from behind to beat Francisco Sanchez Ruiz 11-7 where it did look like at one stage Sanchez Ruiz would run away with it. Fedor Gorst meanwhile beat the last remaining Dutchman Marco Teutscher 11-7. Johann Gonzales Chua became the fourth Filipino in the last eight beating John Morra 11-8 despite a fightback from the Canadian late on.

QUARTER-FINAL FIXTURES FROM 3:30 PM (ET)

Aloysius Yapp vs Rodrigo Geronimo (Table 1)
Max Lechner vs Dennis Orcollo (Table 2)
Johann Gonzales Chua vs Carlo Biado (Table 2)
Fedor Gorst vs Naoyuki Oi (Table 1)

WATCH
Fans can take in Table 1 live on the TV broadcast wherever you are in the world on DAZN in the USA, Canada, Brazil, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, and Sky Sports in the UK. Find out where you can watch the US Open Pool Championship in your country right here.

Table 2 is free to watch and available on the Matchroom Pool YouTube here.

Ticket prices start from $31.24 per session for the single-elimination stage.

Get your tickets here. 

The 2021 US Open Pool Championship will be partnered by Diamond, who supply the Official Table; the Official Cloth is supplied by Iwan Simonis and the Official Balls are ARAMITH Tournament BLACK pool ball set with Duramith™ Technology by Saluc. Predator is the Official Cue of the event and Kamui are the Official Chalk and Tip. The US Open Pool Championship is sanctioned by the WPA.

Defending Champion Joshua Filler Out As US Open Last 16 Draw Made

Defending champion Joshua Filler bowed out of the US Open Pool Championship at Harrah’s Resort, Atlantic City as 9-ball’s toughest tournament moved down to the last 16.

Scores

Alexander Kazakis, Billy Thorpe, and Judd Trump were amongst the names to depart in the morning session before the afternoon and evening action got underway with Francisco Sanchez Ruiz coming from 5-0 down to defeat Shane Van Boening 11-6 to join the last 16.

The Spaniard pounced on an uncharacteristic scratch from Van Boening in the 10th rack and then did the same in the 15th after it looked like the five-time champion would clear the table to cut the deficit to 8-7. Instead, Sanchez Ruiz went 9-6 up and completed a memorable comeback.

Reigning champion Filler followed up from that match knocking out America’s Skyler Woodward in an 11-4 victory that saw the German continue his route towards the last 16. Mieszko Fortuński was next in Filler’s way. Fortuński has battled away throughout the week and put in arguably one of his biggest wins of his career so far to defeat Filler 11-3 in front of a packed crowd around table two. That result saw Filler’s tournament end whilst Fortuński continued his march.

David Alcaide joined his compatriot Sanchez Ruiz in the last 16, the 2019 World Pool Masters champion was trailing for large parts of his match against the Netherlands’ Marc Bijsterbosch but came through 11-8 to put himself in the draw.

There will be four Filipinos come Friday, Dennis Orcollo had wrapped his place up earlier on against Olivér Szolnoki and was swiftly joined by Johann Gonzales Chua who got the better of Mieszko Fortuński in winners’ qualification. Rodrigo Geronimo bypassed Niels Feijen 11-6 to become the third name in the hat.

Jayson Shaw’s US Open title efforts took an almighty dent early on losing out to Denis Grabe of Estonia meaning the Scotsman had to do battle in the losers’ qualification round where he came against a hungry Carlo Biado. Biado came fresh off the back of beating Jeffrey De Luna and he continued his demolition work to come out on top 11-4 to send Shaw home.

Max Lechner has gone about his business quietly all week and that work has paid dividends as he beat Rodrigo Geronimo 11-2 to make the last 16 on his US Open debut.

Van Boening came back after defeat to Filler to face Albin Ouschan later in the evening after Ouschan had defeated Chang Jung-Lin 11-1. In front of the biggest crowd of the tournament to date, Van Boening put on a masterclass in cueing, safety, and everything in-between as the five-time champion downed the World Champion in an 11-2 crushing to keep those eyes firmly set on becoming the most successful player ever at the US Open.

Other Losers Qualification Results

John Morra 11-6 Mickey Krause
Niels Feijen 6-11 Rodrigo Geronimo
Mario He 11-5 Olivér Szolnoki
Naoyuki Oi 11-4 Marc Bijsterbosch
Marco Teutscher 11-6 Darren Appleton

The Last 16 Draw
Aloysius Yapp vs Shane Van Boening (Table 1)
Denis Grabe vs Rodrigo Geronimo (Table 3)
Max Lechner vs Mieszko Fortuński (Table 4)
Dennis Orcollo vs Mario He (Table 2)
Johann Gonzales Chua vs John Morra (Table 3)
David Alcaide vs Carlo Biado (Table 1)
Fedor Gorst vs Marco Teutscher (Table 4)
Francisco Sanchez Ruiz vs Naoyuki Oi (Table 2)

Watch
Fans can take in Table 1 live on the TV broadcast wherever you are in the world on DAZN in the USA, Canada, Brazil, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, and Sky Sports in the UK. Find out where you can watch the US Open Pool Championship in your country right here.

Table 2 is free to watch and available on the Matchroom Pool YouTube here.

Ticket prices start from $31.24 per session for the single-elimination stage.

Get your tickets here. 

The 2021 US Open Pool Championship will be partnered by Diamond, who supply the Official Table; the Official Cloth is supplied by Iwan Simonis and the Official Balls are ARAMITH Tournament BLACK pool ball set with Duramith™ Technology by Saluc. Predator is the Official Cue of the event and Kamui are the Official Chalk and Tip. The US Open Pool Championship is sanctioned by the WPA.

Yapp And Biado To Contest US Open Pool Championship Final

Aloysius Yapp (Erwin Dionisio – Matchroom Multi Sport)

Aloysius Yapp and Carlo Biado will contest the US Open Pool Championship final at Harrah’s Resort, Atlantic City later tonight.

Yapp took on the Philippines’ Dennis Orcollo in the opening semi-final where early on it seemed Orcollo would take full control winning the first three racks after what proved to be a costly early miss on the one by Yapp.

The Filipino always had the experience on Yapp as a previous world champion, but it was the bravery and composure of Yapp that came out on top.

At 3-0, it looked like Orcollo would go into a rampant lead if it wasn’t for a miss on the nine that seemed too routine for him to do so. Yapp gratefully potted it and took the next rack to cut the deficit to one. With the break-in Yapp’s favour, he struggled for a position on the two and missed a bank putting Orcollo back at the table who proceeded to break and run into a 5-2 lead.

It looked like at 5-2 it could be routine for Orcollo, but Yapp had other things on his mind, firstly playing the shot of the match at 5-2 to hook the one and force a foul from Orcollo.

From there, Yapp ran the next two racks to be level for the first time in the match at 5-5. Orcollo went cold as Yapp made him stay in his chair winning the 11th and 12th racks with back-to-back break and runs to assert a 7-5 lead.

Yapp lacked in experience, but he showed bravery and execution of the highest order going into an 8-5 lead having won six racks on the spin. Yapp played the pool of his life reaching the hill first at 10-5 in a remarkable showing before going for an audacious jump using the bridge on the two, but he fouled and Orcollo got back on the board at 10-6.

The 25-year-old overcame late pressure from Orcollo with the Singaporean making a superb carom on the 5 8 before sealing victory at 11-6.

If the first match wasn’t good enough, the second was a modern-day classic.

Naoyuki Oi was the man that stood in the way of Biado making his first Matchroom Pool Series final and it was the Filipino who made the ideal start going 4-0 up with a break and run in the third to hold court early doors.

Oi’s entrance was everything fans have come to expect of the Japanese cueist, and he matched it with his showing especially off the break making balls for fun as the match went on.

At 4-0, Oi rallied to win three racks on the bounce before swiftly going 6-4 up after a special kick shot on the 9 to send the crowd into raucous cheers. It was the case of blink, and you miss it with Biado like his compatriot Orcollo glued to his chair as Oi went 8-4 up by the 12th rack and looked destined for the final.

Biado came back into it though and made it a contest again, taking his fifth rack of the day to cut Oi’s lead to three with a special shot on the two.

He soon levelled at eight all after Oi left the four in the jaws with the Black Tiger making him pay for the error. Oi was handed a lifeline in the 17th rack after Biado scratched on the one and Oi made it 9-8 in his favour but made an early error in the following rack with a bank as Biado took it before reaching the hill first.

The last rack brought drama throughout after Biado let Oi back to the table. Oi made the one ball but found himself with no room to go on the two but played it safe. Biado was back at the table after Oi had left the two in the jaws. Biado pocketed it before being stuck on the three where he produced one of the best pieces of play of the day forcing Oi to scratch as he kicked the three.

Biado counted his lucky stars at that moment as he cleaned up to seal the victory and a place in the final against Yapp.

WATCH
Fans can take in Table 1 live on the TV broadcast wherever you are in the world on DAZN in the USA, Canada, Brazil, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, and Sky Sports in the UK. Find out where you can watch the US Open Pool Championship in your country right here.

The young, the middle and the old(er) meet in final matches of Brendan Crockett Memorial

Tyler Styer, James Aranas, John Morra and Oscar Dominguez

The ‘middle’ wins it, stopping the old(er)’s loss-side streak, which eliminated the youngster

At the 3rd Annual Brendan Crockett Memorial, the Philippines’ James Aranas (the middle) went undefeated, downing Canada’s John Morra (the old-er), who’d eliminated two-time USA Mosconi Cup competitor, Tyler Styer (the younger) in the semifinals. The event is held annually to commemorate the passing of former BEF Junior National Champion Brendan Crockett and his brother, Jefferson, who died in a car accident in 2016. A portion of the entry fees were designated for contributions to the Brendan Crockett Memorial Scholarship, which awards $2,000 to a junior player headed into either their junior or senior year in college. The $5,000-added, 10-Ball event drew 157 entrants to Hard Times Billiards in Sacramento, CA.

After being awarded an opening round bye, Aranas began what turned out to be his undefeated run by having to survive a double hill battle (7-6) versus Jeff Franco. He gave up only five racks over his next three – Spencer Ladin (3), Matt Hardwick (1), Chris Wedekind (0) – and then downed fellow countryman Carlo Biado 7-5 to draw Omar Al Shaheen in one of the winners’ side semifinals. Styer, in the meantime, arrived at his winners’ side semifinal matchup against Warren Kiamco after tallying an aggregate score of 35-8, giving up half of those 8 to Jason Williams in the third round.

Aranas advanced to the hot seat match with a 7-2 win over Al Shaheen. Styer joined him after a hard-fought double hill win over Kiamco. Styer ended up on the wrong end of his second straight double hill match, falling to Aranas, who claimed the hot seat. 

Over on the loss side, Kiamco picked up Carlo Biado, who’d followed his loss to Aranas with victories over Ian Costello and Corey Deuel, both 7-2. Al Shaheen had the misfortune of running into a ‘hot’ John Morra, who’d lost his third winners’ side match to Chris Gentile and embarked on what would turn out to be an eight-match, loss-side winning streak that would take him into the finals against Aranas. Morra had already notched five of those wins into his loss-side belt, to include his recent elimination of Roberto Gomez 7-2 and Shane Van Boening 7-1.

Morra chalked up his 6th loss-side win 7-3 over Al Shaheen and was joined in the quarterfinals by Biado, who’d defeated Kiamco 7-2. Morra and Biado fought a double hill battle in those quarterfinals, but it was the old(er) Morra versus the young(er) Styer in the semifinals. Morra edged out in front 7-5, clearing his last hurdle for a shot at Aranas in the hot seat.

Aranas completed his undefeated run with an 11-7 victory over Morra in the finals.

The Arcadia Arizona Open kicks off the new US Pro Billiard Series

From his early days of competing in pocketing billiards events, Russia’s Fedor Gorst has always shown a proficiency for jumping the cue ball over pesky, obstructing balls.

When the young man was a mere teenager, he used a pinpoint jump shot over Konstantin Stepanov in the finals of a Russian event to earn his first victory. Ever since, it’s been common knowledge among European competitors that sending the cue ball airborne for Gorst is as mundane as a stop shot for them.

The 21-year-old from Moscow was at it again Saturday night in the finals of the inaugural U.S. Pro Billiard Series Arizona Open, using two successful jump shots in his final game to secure the second set of his match against Carlo Biado, then executing four consecutive spot shots in sudden death to secure the title. Gorst, who earned a World 9-Ball championship in 2019 and competed on last year’s winning European Mosconi Cup squad, posted an undefeated record throughout the four-day, 46-player event held last week at Casino Del Sol Resort in Tuscon.

“I was just trying to focus,” said Gorst after the second set was completed and he approached the sudden death frame. “I was super pumped up in that last rack and I was trying to calm down.”

Biado, who has a World 9-Ball title of his own, jumped out to an early advantage during the first set, using a missed 1 ball by his opponent coupled with a break-and-run to take a 2-0 lead in a race-to-four. Gorst rallied in the middle stages, clearing the table during the third game after the Filipino failed to pocket a ball on the break and taking advantage of missed shots by Biado in the next two games to gain the lead, 3-2. At the table with the chance to win the set in the sixth game, the Russian couldn’t pocket a ball on his break. Biado cleared the table then took advantage of a Gorst foul in the next rack to snatch the set, 4-3.

Needing to win the second set to force a shootout, Gorst could not have asked for a better beginning final frame, pocketing the 10 ball on the break to climb onto the scoreboard first. Biado used a misplayed safety to tie the score at a game each but when he failed to pocket a ball on the break in the next game, the Russian pounced – running out the third game and adding a break-and-run to inch ahead, 3-1. Seeing the cue ball’s path blocked nearby balls, Gorst reached for his jump cue and used the instrument to jump in the 3 and 5 balls – securing a 4-1 victory, tying the match at a set apiece and forcing an extra frame.

Gorst’s hot shooting would continue in the extra session, as he sent cut shot after cut shot tumbling into the corner pocket while his opponent struggled to find his stroke, missing back-to-back attempts after landing his opening shot. Biado had a chance to extend the extra set in the fourth frame but missed again.

The U.S. Pro Billiard Series returns to action with the Diamond Las Vegas Open September 1-4 at the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino.

The Arcadia Arizona Open was the first stop in the U.S. Pro Billiard Series, which features five open professional events between July and the end of the year. Created as a partnership between Predator Group and amateur league operator CueSports International, these tournaments will run in tandem along side of CSI league amateur events being held throughout the country. The winner of each competition receives a guaranteed spot in the $100,000-added 2022 Predator World 10-Ball Championship, which will be held March 28 through April 1 in Las Vegas.

For more information on the U.S. Pro Billiard Series or amateur leagues, visit www.playcsipool.com.

New Spot on Calendar Not the Only Change at Diamond Las Vegas Open

Ozzy Reynolds and the staff at CueSports International didn’t exactly have an abundance of time when planning this year’s Diamond Las Vegas Open. With CSI moving the CueSports International Expo from late July in 2019 to mid-March this year, the planning and scheduling began almost immediately after last year’s edition completed.
 
The good news, according to Reynolds, is that there wasn’t much that needed to be changed for this year’s version of the four-day tournament that is scheduled to get under way today at the Rio Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. “The good news is that we did a lot right last year,” said Reynolds. “The Schedule was right on target. It was just a matter of fine tuning.”
 
Live coverage begins at 10 a.m. local time with Darren Appleton taking on defending World 10-Ball champion Ko Ping-Chung. Immediately following this contest, reigning Mosconi Cup Most Valuable Player Skyler Woodward will face former World 9-Ball champion Carlo Biado, with the match tentatively scheduled to begin at 11:30 a.m. The afternoon sessions will kick off with Billiards Congress of America Hall of Famer Francisco Bustamante matching up against five-time US Open 9-Ball champion Shane Van Boening. Competition will continue with 2016 World 9-Ball champion Albin Ouschan of Austria meeting the reigning champion, Russia’s Fedor Gorst.
 
Other notable Wednesday matches include former World 10-Ball champion Ko Pin-Yi playing Poland’s Mieszko Fortunski, who finished second at last year’s Diamond Las Vegas Open. Later in the day, former Aramith Masters champion Eklent Kaci of Albania faces Masato Yoshioka of Japan, a final eight finisher in last year’s World 10-Ball Championship.
 
The biggest change which players and fans alike will notice in this year’s version of the Diamond Las Vegas Open is the switch to 10-ball from 9-ball, a move that was made in order to better align the double-elimination tournament with next week’s World 10-Ball Championship as well as eliminate some of the rules and formatting issues that come with 9-ball. “Nine-ball is somewhat problematic on the pro level,” said Reynolds “The change also stays consistent with the Predator World 10-Ball Championship and the other things that we plan to build in the future.”
 
This consistency also allows tournament organizers to use the event as the final qualifier for next week’s 10-ball championship. Initially, the top two finishers in the Diamond Las Vegas Open who weren’t already entered in the championship were guaranteed bids into the event. However, with a handful of regional qualifiers unable to be held worldwide for a variety of reasons – most notably, restrictions in different countries due to the coronavirus precautions – Reynolds said that at least three at-large spots will be up for grabs this week at the Rio.
 
Those vying for the remaining entries as well as a $17,000 top prize will be facing a bracket that features some of professional pool’s best, with 39 of the top 50 players in the World Pool and Billiard Association’s rankings matching up in Las Vegas this week. The only two players ranked in the top 20 not competing in this 128-player, double-elimination event are China’s Jiaqing Wu and Haitao Liu, both of whom were prohibited to travel due to coronavirus monitoring.
 
One player who will be back at the table this week is returning champion Niels Feijen. The former World 9-ball champion used a pair of break and runs coupled with some unforced errors by opponent Fortunski to claw back from a 7-5 deficit and win, 9-8, in the inaugural event last year. The Dutchman, who opens play against Mickey Krause at 7 p.m. local time, posted an undefeated record in last year’s 9-ball formatted, 106-player tournament.
 
Another change made to this year’s event was the addition of a 30-second shot clock on the main arena table. “We felt like that was necessary to pick up the pace of play and not bore the fans,” Reynolds said.
 
The Diamond Las Vegas Open is a presentation of CueSports International and Predator and title-sponsored by Diamond Billiard Products, an industry leader in pocket billiard table manufacturing. Co-sponsors are Omega Billiards and Kamui. The event is being hosted by the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino and will be broadcast live on YouTube by CSI Media, a division of CueSports International. For more information, visit www.world10ball.com.
 
CueSports International (CSI) is an international billiards organization which produces amateur and professional events around the world. CSI, which also operates amateur pool leagues, has three divisions: CSI Leagues, CSI Events and CSI Media. CSI Leagues manages the BCA Pool League and USA Pool League, CSI Events produces numerous amateur and professional events and CSI Media division creates live video billiards content. For more information about CSI, visit www.playcsipool.com or find CueSports International on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Twitter.
 

Less Than One Month Until The Predator World 10-Ball Championship

Ko Ping-Chung (JP Parmentier)

Last year, Ping-Chung Ko claimed his first World Championship with a dramatic win in the finals over Joshua Filler. This was part of his incredible 2019, which earned him the WPA #1 ranking he has today.
 
In less than one month at the Rio All-Suites Hotel and Casino, he’ll have a chance to repeat. The $100,000 added tournament features 64 players in an impressively skilled field. Part of that is due to the appeal of 10-Ball, something Ko appreciates.
 
“I like 10-ball because it is more difficult to break. Although just one ball more it brings more diversity and visibility to enrich the game,” said Ko. “You need more concentration and more thorough consideration to finish each rack. I enjoy the feelings of playing 10-ball.”
 
Admission is free for the five-day competition and the event will be streamed live for no charge on Cuesports International’s YouTube channel. Last year’s event was the first Category 1 WPA sanctioned world championship held in the United States since 1997.
 
Players already confirmed and announced include Ko, former World 9-Ball Champion Joshua Filler, Billiard’s Digest player of the decade Shane Van Boening, Kremlin Cup winner Tyler Styer, 2017 World Games 9-Ball Champion Carlo Biado and reigning Mosconi Cup MVP Skyler Woodward.
 
More announcements will be made as we continue to finalize what is one of the most competitive fields of the year.
 
The Championship takes place over two stages. The first involves all players competing in a race to 8 matches in a double-elimination format until only 16 competitors remain. The surviving players then play in a single-elimination format during the second half of the event, with the race now increased to 10 games. The final phase features re-drawing of the brackets where competitors from the winner’s side take on players from the one-loss side.
 
The Predator World 10-ball Championship is presented by CueSports International and sponsored by Predator Group, the world’s premier cue makers and billiards accessory manufacturer. The event is being hosted at the Rio All-Suites Hotel and Casino and broadcasted live on YouTube by CSI Media, a subsidiary of CueSports International. For more information, visit www.world10ball.com.
 
The Predator World 10-ball Championship is sponsored by:
Predator Cues: www.predatorcues.com
CueSports International: https://www.playcsipool.com/
Diamond billiard tables: www.diamondbilliards.com
Omega Billiards: www.omegabilliards.com
Kamui Brand: www.kamuibrand.com

World 9-Ball Championship Comes Down To Four

Ko Ping-Chung

Ko Ping Chung, Fedor Gorst, Chang Jung Lin and Liu Haitao stand on the brink of history in Doha.

 

After nearly ten hours of some of the most grueling and pressure packed pool seen in years, the 2019 World 9-ball Championship has now come down to the Final 4.

 
The four players left, Taiwan’s Ko Ping Chung and Chang Jung Lin, Russia’s Fedor Gorst, and China’s Liu Haitao are, to a man, already proven monsters of the game. Now each is poised on the cusp of history and will get their crack at pool immortality.
 
In one semi-final, the current World 10-ball Champion Ko will battle it out against Gorst. In the other semi-final, Chang will match wits with Liu.   Both semis, which will be race to 11, alternate break, will begin at 11am Tuesday in Doha(GMT +3) at the Qatar Billiards and Snooker Federation.  The Final, which will be race to 13, alternate break, will begin at 3pm Doha time.
 
Pool fans around the world looking at that list of talent on their betting sheet might be hard pressed to pick who to put their money on to take the sport’s most coveted crown. But anyone who has been lucky enough to be on hand in Doha for the last week, or watch the action online, would probably not hesitate to favor the man fondly known as “Little Ko.”
 
Ko got that endearing moniker by being the sweet younger brother to the great Ko Pin Yi, himself a two time former world champion. Fans have known Little Ko to have as much prodigious talent as his older brother, but it wasn’t until he won the World 10-ball Championship in Vegas in July this year that the diminutive 24 year old clearly had stepped out of that long shadow and started to establish his own greatness.
 
Indeed over the last four days in Doha, the 24 year old Ping Chung has exhibited an almost surreal-like confidence to do whatever it takes to win. His shot making is from another planet, he never, ever gets flustered, and he seemingly can do what he wants, when he wants. 
 
These other-worldly skills were on full display in his three tough matches over ten hours today. In the round of 32 match against talented compatriot Lin Wu Kun, Ko got out to an early lead and held off Lin at every turn to win 11-8. In the round of 16, Ko came up against Russian veteran Ruslan Chinakhov who was playing some of his best pool in years. But Ko was in no mood to play nice, and he dominated Chinakhov 11-4.
 
By the time his quarterfinals battle against Vietnam upstart Do The Kien began, Ko looked a bit worn, and he fell behind 6-2.  But as he did against Hungary’s Oliver Slzolnoki the night before in the round of 64, Ko grinded his way back in the match. In this case the Taiwanese absolutely put his boot down hard, winning 9 racks in a row for an emphatic 11-6 win and a spot in the semi-finals.
 
Little Ko’s battle with Russia’s Gorst promises to be a fascinating match up of two of pool’s great young talents. Gorst, just 19 year’s old, is a former  World Junior Champion and has also won one Euro Tour event. His game and his personal demeanor appear well beyond his years, and this is not surprising when you discover that he has traveled and played extensively, especially in the US. He even speaks excellent English.
 
Like Ko, Gorst has a rock-solid game and low-key demeanor that serves him well when under pressure.  His three fine performances today showed he is certainly ready for the big time. Should he win here in Doha, he would become the second youngest player, after 16 year old Wu Chia Ching in 2005, to win the World 9-ball Championship.
 
Gorst started the day with a very impressive 11-7 win over Taiwan’s Kevin Chang. In the round of 16 he blew a 7-1 lead over Poland’s Mateusz Sniegocki, and the match headed for the cliff and a sudden death rack. Gorst held his nerve with a very fine break and run to advance to the quarterfinals.
 
Without so much as having a bite to eat, he met up with Ko Pin Yi for what promised to be another slug fest. The early part of the match remained tight and nervy, but the young Russian stayed loose and calm and pounced on the few mistakes by Ko for an impressive 11-6 win.
 
The other semi final between Liu and Chang could well be described as pool’s battle of the hard core men. Both players are known for their tough, grinding style and it will be fascinating to see who blinks first.
 
With his many trips to the US and other countries over the years, Chang has certainly endeared himself to worldwide fans. Over the last few years the 34 year old Chang, the 2012 World 8-ball champion, has taken his game to new heights, including a win at the International in 2018. Another world title for Chang would certainly surprise nobody.
 
Chang played like a champion today, at least up until the end where he literally limped over the finish line. In the round of 32 he manhandled Poland’s Mieszko Fortunski, 11-5. In the round of 16 Chang came back from an early deficit to beat Spain’s Francisco Sanchez Ruiz, 11-7. Then in the quarters he looked to be in total control over Finland upstart Casper Matikainen, with an 8-2 lead.
 
Matikainen, who had defeated defending champion Joshua Filler in the round of 64, and had just beaten 2016 World 9-ball Champion Albin Ouschan in the round of 16, was a total revelation this week in Doha. And just when the quiet Finn looked like he would run out of gas, he began a glorious fight back against Chang. The pair ended up tied at 10 in a battle of sheer will and stamina. Chang, though, mustered one last bit of energy and skill and held on to break and run the very last rack for a nail-biting ticket to the semis.
 
China’s Liu has been knocking on this door of greatness for the last several years, and his three matches today showed he is ready to finally kick it in. In the round of 64, he came from two down late against Greece’s Alexander Kazakis to win 11-9. In the final 16 he came back from 6 -2 down to defeat Japan’s Naoyuki Oi, 11-9. In the quarters the Chinese went toe to toe with a streaking Alex Pagulayan. The pair had nothing between them for the first half, until Liu decided this time was his, and he put the Filipino-Canadian away, 11-8.
 
Should Liu win it all on Tuesday, he would become the first Chinese player to ever win the WPA World 9-ball Championship.
 
The winner of the 2019 World 9-ball Championship will receive $30,000. The total prize fund is $150,000.
 
*The 2019 WPA World 9-ball Championship takes place at the Qatar Billiards and Snooker Federation in Doha, Qatar from December 10-17, 2019. The event is hosted by The Qatar Billiard and Snooker Federation(QBSF), and is sanctioned by the World Pool Billiard Association, the governing body of the sport of pool.
 
Fans around the world will be able to view live scoring, results, brackets and live streaming of many of the matches via the QBSF’s free live streaming platform at esnooker.pl.  Multiple tables will be available to view online at no charge to the public.
 
 
SEMI-FINALS
Tuesday, December 17 11am, GMT +3
Race to 11, Alternate Break
 
Jung Lin Chang(TPE) vs. Lui Haitao(CHN)
Ping Chung Ko(TPE) vs. Fedor Gorst(RUS)
 
FINALS
3PM Doha
Race to 13, Alternate Break
 
 
 
RESULTS QUARTERFINALS
 
Jung Lin Chang(TPE) 11 – 10 Casper Matikainen(FIN) 
Lui Haitao(CHN) 11 – 8 Alex Pagulayan(CAN)
 
Chung Ko Ping(TPE) 11 – 6 Do The Kien(VET)
Fedor Gorst(RUS) 11- 6 Pin Yi Ko(TPE)
 
 
 
RESULTS FINAL 16
 
Casper Matikainen(FIN) 11 – 6 Albin Ouschan(AUT)
Jung Lin Chang(TPE) 11 – 7 Francisco Sanchez Ruiz(ESP)
 
Lui Haitao(CHN) 11 – 9 Naoyuki Oi(JPN)
Alex Pagulayan(CAN) 11 – 9 Billy Thorpe(USA)
 
Chung Ko Ping(TPE) 11 – 4 Ruslan Chinakhov(RUS)
Do The Kien(VET) 11 – 8 Waleed Majid(QAT)
 
Pin Yi Ko(TPE) 11 – 9 Aloysius Yapp(SIN)
Fedor Gorst(RUS) 11 – 10 Mateusz Sniegocki(POL)
 
 
 
RESULTS FINAL 32
 
Casper Matikainen(FIN) 11 – 8 Yip Kin Ling(HKG)
Albin Ouschan(AUT) 11 – 8 Denis Grabe(EST)
 
Jung Lin Chang(TPE) 11 – 5 Mieszko Fortunski(POL)
Francisco Sanchez Ruiz(ESP) 11 – 5 Xu Xiaocong(CHN)
 
Liu Haitao(CHN) 11 – 9  Alexander Kazakis(GRE) 
Naoyuki Oi(JPN) 11 – 6 Johann Chua(PHL)
 
Alex Pagulayan(CAN) 11 – 7 Chang Yu Lung(TPE)
Billy Thorpe(USA) 11 – 10 Carlo Biado(PHL)
 
Chung Ko Ping(TPE) 11 – 8 Lin Wu Kun(TPE)
Ruslan Chinakhov(RUS) 11 – 8 Maximilian Lechner(AUT)  
 
Do The Kien(VET) 11 – 7 Chris Melling(ENG)  
Waleed Majid(QAT) 11 -10 Wojciech Szewczyk(POL) vs.
 
Pin Yi Ko(TPE) 11 – 9 Jeffrey Ignacio(PHL)
Aloysius Yapp(SIN) 11 – 5 Darren Appleton(ENG)
 
Fedor Gorst(RUS)11 – 7 Yu Hsuan Cheng(TPE)
Mateusz Sniegocki(POL) 11 – 7 Liu Ri Teng(TPE)