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2024 UK Open Pool Championship – WNT No.1 Ruiz Knocked Out As Kaci’s Title Defence Continues

Eklent Kaci (Taka Wu – Matchroom Multi Sport)

World Champion Francisco Sanchez Ruiz suffered an unexpected exit from the BetVictor 2024 UK Open Pool Championship, at the Telford International Centre, whereas defending champion Eklent Kaçi advances into tomorrow’s Last 16 live on broadcasters worldwide, including DAZN, Viaplay, and Sky Sports in the UK.



Despite making it to the Last 32, Ruiz fell short against former World Cup of Pool champion Petri Makkonen, losing 10-6. Upsets continued as home favourite Jayson Shaw and Vietnamese star Duong Quoc Hoang both failed to progress from the Last 64 stage, each losing 10-7.

Kaçi’s title defence remained strong, staging a crucial comeback against Mario He, overturning a 1-5 deficit to ultimately secure a 10-7 victory. The defending champion went into the Last 32, where he defeated the Singaporean Toh Lian Han with a decisive 10-5. However, his younger brother, Kledio Kaçi, struggled to advance past the Last 64, falling 10-7 to Makkonen.

The only Austrian to make it to the quarterfinals, Albin Ouschan, secured a hard-fought victory over snooker champion Gary Wilson in a nail-biting 10-9 battle. Ouschan clawed back from a three-rack deficit, earning his place for tomorrow’s matchup.

The Ko brothers effortlessly advanced into the quarterfinals with slid back-to-back victories in their matches, alongside last year’s Mosconi Cup Team USA contenders, Fedor Gorst, Shane Van Boening, and this year’s captain, Skyler Woodward.

To wrap up the day, Joshua ‘The Killer’ Filler claimed his revenge against old foe Anton Raga with a commanding a 10-0 masterclass, marking a stark contrast to Raga’s victory over Filler in the 2023 European Open.

JS Junior Open Bracket

The JS Junior Open returns alongside the main action in the Telford International Centre. Juniors aged 17 and under all came to Telford hoping to make a name for themselves as an up-and-coming superstar. With host Shaw watching on and welcoming, action was fast-paced as they compete for their part of the $10,000 prize fund. All players were provided with a free jersey from partners Onboard Sportswear as well as welcome pack that included tips and chalk from KAMUI. The final of the JS Junior Open will be live-streamed live on the Matchroom Pool YouTube channel thanks to the partners mentioned above and Cuetec, Diamond Billiards, Iwan Simonis, and Aramith Balls.

Match Schedule

TV Table
Joshua Filler (GER) (4) vs Wiktor Zielinski (POL) (11)
Eklent Kaci (ALB) (13) vs Shane Van Boening (USA) (2)

Table One

Tobias Bongers (GER) (70) vs Ko Pin Yi (TPE) (12)
Fedor Gorst (USA) (3) vs Robbie Capito (HK) (52)
Skyler Woodward (USA) (16) vs Petri Makkonen (FIN)

Table Two

Mieszko Fortunski (POL) (24) vs Ko Ping Chung (TPE) (5)
Mickey Krause (DEN) (68) vs Pijus Labutis (LIT) (36)
Albin Ouschan (AUS) (7) vs Liu Ri Tend (TPE) (95)

Live rack-by-rack scoring will be available throughout the event at

Wherever you are in the world, you will be able to catch the action with broadcasters globally and live on the Matchroom Pool and Multi Sport YouTube channels in selected territories and on Matchroom.Live. UK-based fans can see the final two days on Sky Sports with the opening four on Matchroom.Live and the Matchroom YouTube. Fans in the USA and Brazil will be able to watch all six days live on DAZN whilst those in Scandinavia, the Baltics, Poland, Netherlands, and Iceland can watch live on Viaplay.

See where to watch in your country here.

Spectators will be able to catch the action live from the Telford International Centre throughout the week, with day tickets available from £22 and weekend passes for fans to take in the final two days for just £50.
Secure your ticket here

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Duong Quoc Hoang wins loss-side five, four in double-elimination to win Jacoby Scottish Open

Duong Quoc Hoang

Oscar Dominguez wins loss-side three, three more in double-elimination to finish as runner-up

They call him “The Martian,” which, as best as we can figure, is in reference to his ‘other-worldly’ skills at the table. He’s been demonstrating those skills for a while now (about seven years, according to our records), but when Vietnam’s Duong Quoc Hoang prevented Shane Van Boening from defending his 2022 World Pool Championship title by eliminating him (double hill) in the 2023 event, and then, finished 5th, people started to notice. Though he cashed in a total of eight events, all over the world that year, including a 3rd place finish in last February’s Alfa Las Vegas Open, he didn’t win an event in what turned out to be his best recorded earnings year, to date. 

In an international field of 104 that got together this past weekend (May 1-5) at McGoldrick’s Pool & Sports Bar in Glasgow, Scotland, Hoang got off to shaky start, losing his opening match to Taipei’s Ko Ping Han 10-7. He won the next five matches on the loss side to qualify for the event’s single-elimination, final 16 and then won four more to claim the title. This caused quite a stir in Vietnam, where reportedly (by Vietnam media) hundreds of thousands of people watched him win his first international title and the first international title won by a player from Vietnam. 

Sacramento, California’s Oscar Dominguez, who (as far as we know) started earning cash payouts during the first term of George W. Bush (2003), didn’t attract as much (streaming) attention here in the US as Hoang did in Vietnam, but he made enough noise in finishing as the runner-up to attract the kind of international notice that accompanied Hoang’s defeat of Shane Van Boening a year ago.

The two of them came into the event ranked 42nd (Dominguez) and 44th (Hoang) on the World 9-Ball Tour rankings. They were playing ‘way above their pay grade,’ at least in World 9-Ball ranking terms, which measures success strictly in terms of finance. And wait’ll you hear the people they beat to get to the finals.

As Hoang was busy at work on the loss side of the double-elimination bracket, Dominguez was working on the winners’ side. For two matches, defeating UK’s Bash Maqsood 10-2 and Italy’s Francesco Candela 10-6. Then he ran into the #1 competitor in the World 9-Ball Tour rankings, Spain’s Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz, who defeated him 10-6.

Sanchez-Ruiz’ winners’ side run ended in the next round, when he was defeated by Bosnia-Herzegovina’s Sanjin Pehlivanovic 10-5.  Joining Pehlivanovic in single-elimination from the winners’ side were David Alcaide, Joshua Filler, Thorsten Hohmann, Shane Van Boening, Tyler Styer, Aloysius Yapp and Fedor Gorst. In other words, (in order, as named) World 9-Ball-ranked competitors #19, #8, #6, #34, #2, #32, #10 and #3.

On the loss side, Hoang got his five-match, loss-side streak underway with a shutout over Jake-Dylan Newlove, an 8-2 win over Benji Buckley, an 8-3 win over Elliot Sanderson, and an 8-1 victory over Mustafa Alnar. Then, it started getting interesting when he and Carlo Biado fought to double hill before Hoang closed it out to meet up with the guy that his eventual opponent in the finals had sent over, Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz, who only had to win the single, loss-side match to get himself back on track in single-elimination. Didn’t happen, as #44 took down #1 10-7. 

Dominguez had to win three to get back to single elimination. He did so by defeating Ko Ping Han 8-2, Dawud Qadir 8-4 and in the qualifying match, Japan’s Naoyuki Oi 10-6. Joining the two who’d be the last men standing, from the loss side, were Albania’s Eklent Kaci, Spain’s Jonas Souto, UK’s Jayson Shaw (who’d lost his opening match to Liu Ri Teng and defeated Karl Boyes to advance back), Albania’s Albin Ouschan, Taipei’s Ko Pin-Yi and the Netherlands Neils Feijen (last year’s addition to BCA’s Hall of Fame).

While neither Tyler Styer, Eklent Kaci, nor Ko Pin Yi would be considered ‘easy’ draws by any stretch of the imagination, it could be argued that Hoang had the softer, single-elimination path to the finals, because while Hoang was going through that gauntlet, Dominguez had to get through Josh Filler, Thorsten Hohmann and Jayson Shaw, whose ranking numbers, in total (45), are just three over Dominguez’ #42. 

Hoang eliminated Styer 10-7, Kaci 10-5 and punched his ticket to the final with a double-hill, semifinal win over Ko Pin-Yi. Dominguez, more than likely taking a huge breath after every step along his path to the same destination, got into a double-hill tussle against Filler right off the bat (breath). Thorsten Hohmann stayed close, until Dominguez edged out in front near the end to win it 10-7 (another breath). 

Anyone who has ever played against him or just watched Jayson Shaw play will tell you that he can be an intimidating opponent. He doesn’t try to throw you off stride by acting particularly aggressive. In fact, at times, he can look as though he’s ready for a nap. What settles into your head more than anything is the quick and decisive ways that he approaches the table, finds the shot he needs to make, gets down on it and pulls the trigger. In less time than it takes him to get onto his feet and get to the table. One shot after another; see it, get down and shoot, faster than you can say 1, 2, 3. Over and over. He’ll make an unforced position error every once in a while, but rarely makes a shot error. And again, if you’ve watched this, as competitor or spectator, you know that a significant or satisfying win will have him roaring like the MGM lion, only louder. And if all that doesn’t rattle your cage a bit, you might want to check yourself for a pulse.

By the same token, it wasn’t Dominguez first rodeo and over the years, he’s squared off against some of the best in the business. Shaw’s ‘routine’ appeared to have little effect, as Dominguez pulled out in front early and joined Hoang in the finals with a 10-5 win over Shaw in the other semifinal (another breath).

And then, the final. After working their way through some of the best competitors on the World 9-Ball Tour stage (they’d both defeated the WNT’s #1-ranked competitor, Sanchez-Ruiz), their match between each other had to offer Dominguez and Hoang a measure of relief. Not underestimating their opponent, but confident enough with their work to that point that they might actually have settled into enjoying themselves a bit. Relaxing, not when it got down to the business of shot-making, but just in the minute-by-minute reality of absorbing all that had gone before and paying attention to what was happening at the table.

It got close. One of those almost double-hill matches, with all the tension of double hill, minus the agonizing fact that after all the work that’s gone into a sizeable tournament, winning or losing has come down to a single game. There was a $6,000+ difference between 1st and 2nd place, so there was a lot at stake in the final match, although given what they’d gone through to get there, I suspect they both figured on ending up as ‘happy campers’ no matter how it turned out.

As he had done in all four of the single-elimination tournaments, Hoang came from behind to claim the final “W.” They traded racks to a 3-3 tie before Dominguez won five of the next six to take an 8-4 lead. Hoang took it over from there, winning it 10-8 to claim his first international title at the Jacoby Scottish Open. According to reports in Vietnamese media, Hoang raised his cue in celebration and later posted on social media “I made it.”

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Defending Champion Zielinski Still Alive at Alfa Las Vegas Open

Wiktor ZIelinski

One year ago, Wiktor Zielinski became the first player from Poland to break through at a large-scale event, defeating Aloysius Yapp to win the Alfa Las Vegas Open.

Heading into the final day of this year’s Open, Zielinski’s hopes to repeat as champion remain firmly in tact, as the Pole defeated 2020 champion Jung-Lin Chang in straight sets Saturday night at the Rio All-Suites Hotel and Casino. The Pole will now face Vietnam’s Duong Quoc Hoang, who came from behind to beat Shane Van Boening.

After Zielinski won the first set, 4-2, the two competitors split the first two games of the second frame until the Pole clawed ahead with a victorious safety exchange. He failed to pocket a ball on the break in the following game but forced Chang into fouling, allowing him to tack on another win and climb onto the hill. Chang, who reached the quarterfinals by defeating Albin Ouschan and Joshua Filler, cut the deficit to 3-2 when he forced Zielinski into a foul with a safety but lost the next game and the match when his opponent used the same strategy, finding an opening to run out after multiple safeties on the 2 ball.

On an adjacent table, Hoang was taking advantage of a handful of unforced errors by Van Boening to grind his way into the semifinals.

The American won the first two racks of the opening set then took advantage of a missed cut shot on the 2 ball by his opponent to build an early 3-0 advantage. Van Boening, who reached the quarterfinals with victories over Eklent Kaci and Konrad Juszczyszyn, closed out the set in the next game when he forced Hoang into a foul with a safety.

He drew first blood in the second set when his opponent missed the 1 ball but again failed to make a ball on the break, allowing Hoang to drill home a combination shot on the 10 ball. Hoang climbed ahead after Van Boening missed a soft 7 ball in the side pocket, then increased his lead when he pocketed another combination after forcing the American into committing another foul. Van Boening had a chance to pull to within a game of the lead but missed the 6 ball, allowing his opponent to sail to a 4-1 second set win.

In the deciding set, Van Boening took advantage of a Hoang miss in the opening game to take an early lead but both players continued to be plagued by breaking struggles, failing to land a ball on the opening shot. Hoang tied the score after trading safeties, gave away a chance at the lead when he scratched but recovered in the next game when Van Boening scratched on the break. With the score now knotted at two, Hoang closed out the set by taking advantage of a missed 3 ball by Van Boening in the fifth game then breaking and running.

Zielinski will have familiar company in the semifinals, with fellow countryman Daniel Maciol defeating Bader Alawadhi 4-3, 4-1 in the quarterfinals, meaning half of the event’s remaining four competitors are from Poland. Maciol will face Sanjin Pehlivanovic, who defeated Vitaliy Patsura in straight sets as well.

Semifinals are scheduled to begin at 12 p.m. local time and the finals are slated to start at 4 p.m.

Watch Live on World Billiard TV YouTube channel, Billiard TV and at

Brackets and scores can be found at

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

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Polish Power and Fisher Back to Defend Crowns at Alfa Opens and World 10-Ball

For the past five years or so, competitors from Poland had been going deep in large professional pocket billiards tournaments and challenging the world’s best.

Polish competitors like Mieszko Fortunski, Wiktor Zielinski and Konrad Juszczyszyn would routinely reach the final 16 or quarterfinals of a major tournament or world championship – like in 2021, when eight Poles qualified for the 64-player, single-elimination phase of a world championship.

“Everyone is chasing after each other here and working on their game and it makes it very difficult for anyone to stand out,” said Wojciech Szewczyk. “We have a lot of passion for the game and we take it very seriously.”

Despite this passion, no one from the European nation had managed to earn a major victory –until last year, when Zielinski took home first place at Predator’s Pro Billiard Series Alfa Las Vegas Open and Szewczyk came from behind to win the Predator World 10-Ball Championship six days later. Both players along with women’s Alfa Las Vegas Open champion Kelly Fisher will be back to defend their titles beginning this week, with the Cue Sports International Expo kicking off this week. The 11-day event, which also includes the 3-Cushion World Cup, will begin Wednesday with the men’s Alfa Las Vegas Open and the women’s Open starting on Friday.

As Predator and CSI work to produce the toughest and fairest tests in professional pool, this year’s Pro Billiard Series events will see a format change. The single-elimination final stage of the Open tournaments will expand to three sets of a race-to-four from the two sets that it was previously. If the third set finishes in a 3-3 tie, a sudden-death shootout will occur. Competition in the double-elimination opening stage will remain a two-set race-to-four with ties decided by a shootout.

The format for the 128-player World 10-Ball Championship will remain unchanged, with players competing in race-to-eight double-elimination during the first half of the event before expanding to a race-to-10 during the single-elimination portion of the competition.

Zielinski survived a rollercoaster of a final day in last year’s Alfa Open, defeating Dimitri Jungo and Mika Immonen in shootouts to reach the finals where he took down Singapore’s Aloysius Yapp in straight sets. Six days later, Szewczyk trailed Edgie Geronimo 9-6 in the quarterfinals of the World 10-Ball Championships before taking advantage of a pair of open opportunities to come from behind and defeat his opponent. He then took down Albania’s Eklent Kaci and Christopher Tevez of Peru to earn Poland’s first world title. The weekend concluded with Fisher continuing a hot streak that would result in her earning a gold medal at the World Games later that summer and Player of the Year honors with Billiards Digest as AZBilliards, as the Hall of Famer posted an undefeated record and defeated Canada’s Britany Bryant in the finals of the women’s Alfa Las Vegas Open.

Professional events will be played on 18 nine-foot Predator Apex tables while over 6,000 competitors from the CSI Leagues will be competing on 276 of the seven-foot Apex table.

The prize fund for this year’s World 10-Ball Championship is also expanding to a total of $250,000 – up from $225,000 the previous year – with the winner’s share remaining $60,000. The two-week-long event kicks off third year of the Pro Billiard Series, which will include 21 total events this year that will pay out over $2 million in prize money.

Matches can be watched on Billiard.TV and on World Billiard TV, the official YouTube channel of CueSports International. A schedule of televised matches will be posted daily on the Pro Billiard Series and CSI Facebook and Instagram pages.

The Alfa Las Vegas Open starts at 9am local time tomorrow. Watch Live on World Billiard TV YouTube channel, Billiard TV and at

Brackets and scores can be found at

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

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Day One Wraps Up In Tallinn

Mario He

PLAY GOT UNDERWAY at the Dynamic Billard Estonian Open as the opening day unfolded for the 200 or so competitors at the Kalev Sports Hall in Tallinn. Almost four rounds of play were completed and absentees Joshua Filler and Wiktor Zielinski were joined by No.4 ranked player Eklent Kaci who failed to materialise for his first-round match, having failed to travel to Estonia.

That gave extra impetus to some of the big names competing, as 2022’s player of the year, Francisco Sanchez Ruiz won his opening game, beating Panagiotis Ksipoliteas (Greece) by 9-6. The Spaniard plays again tomorrow morning when he faces countryman Salvador Garcia Fernandez.

Estonian No.1 Dennis Grabe enjoyed a 9-7 win over Portugal’s Joao Grilo to safely negotiate day one, while countryman, reigning WPA World U17 champ Karl Gnadeberg, scored a fantastic win over No.10 ranked player Miesko Fortunski by 9-5. Both players had table time in the Longoni 9 Ball League on Friday evening but Gnadeberg certainly sent out a message with the win.

Another highly-decorated junior, 15 year-old Felix Vogel (Germany) made it two wins from two in Tallinn. Vogel was a gold medallist at the European Junior Championships last year and even at a tender age, is a dangerous opponent for anyone.

He beat Eero Romppanen 9-0 and then Azhdar Nasirov 9-3 to set up a Winners Round 2 match against top Hungarian Oliver Szolnoki, which will be a real test for the precocious young talent.

Mario He, the winner in Treviso last time out in November, suffered a body blow as he lost his opening match 9-6 to Adam Stankiewicz. The 21 year-old Pole is currently ranked No.76 on the Euro Tour and that was certainly one of his finer moments.

Juho Teittinen

He though, bounced back on the one loss side as he defeated 16 year-old Finnish junior Juho Teittinen 9-6 to keep his hopes alive and he can look forward to facing another Finn, Leevi Auresto at midday tomorrow.

There are plenty more matches in store on Sunday as the field plays down to the last 16. Action continues in the morning at 9.00am local time, with Losers Round 2 as well as Winners Round 2 matches.

As well as the prize money, there are Tour ranking points on offer. All Euro Tour tournaments are 9-ball and players compete in a double-elimination format, playing down to the last 32 competitors, and then single elimination until the finish. All matches are races to 9 racks with alternate break.

All the matches can be viewed live by visiting and clicking on the ‘LIVE’ button.

This will take you through to viewing options. In addition, selected matches will be streamed on Facebook Live on the EPBF page.

The semi-finals and final, played out on Monday night, will be live or highlights on the following television stations across Europe;

SportKlub HD – Serbia, Slovenia, Croatia, Montenegro, North Macedonia,
Bosnia Herzegovina, Greece
Duo5 – Estonia
SportKlub – Poland
ORF – Austria

Results, live scoring, and draw are available at

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World Pool Masters Prize Fund Increases To $125,000 And China Returns

The prize fund for the World Pool Masters 2023 will increase to $125,000 with the winner now see to take home $40,000 as China return on the international stage in Nineball for the first time since 2019 from May 10-13 at the Brentwood Centre, Essex in England.

Already, the top 14 on the Nineball World Rankings after the World Pool Championship have qualified underlining the importance of the ranking system first introduced by Matchroom at the start of 2021 with Joshua Filler set to be seeded as number one after beating Lo Ho Sum in last year’s final 9-6:

1 Joshua Filler Germany
2 Francisco Sanchez Ruiz Spain
3 Shane Van Boening USA
4 Mario He Austria
5 Albin Ouschan Austria
6 Jayson Shaw Great Britain
7 Wiktor Zielinski Poland
8 Max Lechner Austria
9 Alexander Kazakis Greece
10 Ko Pin Yi Chinese Taipei
11 Fedor Gorst
12 Niels Feijen Netherlands
13 Mohammad Soufi Syria
14 Eklent Kaci Albania

China’s Zheng Xiao Huai becomes the first wild card with one more to be revealed in the coming weeks.

Tickets for pool’s most historic invitational start from only £10 with fans able to soak in all four days of action for just £60. Tickets will go on priority sale to Matchroom Pool Club members on Monday, 20 February with general sale to follow Tuesday, 21 February. Sign up for priority sale here.

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64 Remain In Poland At World Pool Championship 2023 Inbox

Joshua Filler (Taka G Wu/Matchroom Multi Sport)

Joshua Filler survived being knocked to the loser’s side by Alex Pagulayan on day two of the World Pool Championship 2023 in Kielce, Poland as only 64 remain after two days of action live on Sky Sports, Viaplay, DAZN, Matchroom.Live and TV networks worldwide.

Brackets / Scores

Filler faced Pagulayan early on for a spot in the Last 64 to avoid an extra match in Losers’ Qualification round this evening. The Killer fell to a 9-7 defeat, his second defeat to the Canadian in a matter of days after a loss at the Derby City Classic. It left Filler having to beat Daniele Corrieri to ensure his hunt for a second world title would continue and he did so in emphatic fashion in a 9-1 dismantling. Crucially, defeat to Pagulayan meant Filler lost his seeded position in the bracket ahead of the Last 64 redraw.

Other top seeds had less trouble as Shane Van Boening stepped past Mats Schjetne 9-2 whilst two-time winner Albin Ouschan put Khalid Alghamdi onto the losers side. Jayson Shaw meanwhile took out young German Tobias Bongers 9-5 and World Cup of Pool winner David Alcaide whitewashed Jani Uski to secure an afternoon off.

Last year’s semi-finalist Abdullah Alyousef suffered a 9-3 defeat to USA hotshot Shane Wolford to be sent home at the first major hurdle whilst Oliver Szolnoki suffered the same fate in a hill-hill finish against Ajdin Piknjac. 2021 runner-up Omar Al-Shaheen struggled for his groove against Denis Grabe as the Estonian came good to knock the 2021 runner-up out the competition. There was frustration for 1996 champion Ralf Souquet also, the Kaiser well beaten by Pole Daniel Maciol in Winners’ Qualification before defeat at the hands of Dimitri Jungo. Home favourite Mieszko Fortunski was also knocked out with the World Pool Masters semi-finalist knocked out by Lars Kuckherm.

The 32 players who qualified through Winners’ Qualification were seeded in the Last 64 redraw against an unseeded player who came through the Losers Qualification matches with Karl Boyes completing the draw with Rachel Casey on the Matchroom Pool YouTube page. Pagulayan and Filler will have to dance again after being drawn against each other whilst defending champion Van Boening will come up against Uski.

Action returns from midday local time tomorrow on Sky Sports in the UK and Ireland, Viaplay in Poland, Scandinavia, the Baltics, and the Netherlands, DAZN in the USA and Italy as well as on Matchroom.Live and broadcasters worldwide. Table 2 and Table 3 are on the Matchroom Pool and Multi Sport YouTube Channels respectively and Viaplay in above listed territories. See where to watch here.

Last 64 Draw

Shane Van Boening VS Jani Uski
Aloysius Yapp VS Chris Melling
David Alcaide VS Wojciech Szewczwk
Lo Ho Sum VS Duong Quoc Hoang
Max Lechner VS Ruben Bautista
Nick Van Den Berg VS Johann Chua
Naoyuki Oi VS Emil-Andre Gangflot
Alexander Kazakis VS Wu Kun Lin
Sebastian Batkowski VS Francesco Candela
Ali Nasser Al Obaidli VS James Aranas
Imran Majid VS Mika Immonen
Mariusz Skoneczny VS Mohammad Soufi
Gerson Martinez VS Lars Kukcherm
Mateusz Sniegocki VS Fabio Petroni
Daniel Maciol VS Dimitri Jungo
Albin Ouschan VS Tyler Styer
Alex Pagulayan VS Johshua Filler
Aleksa Pecelj VS Roman Hybler
Sanjin Pehlivanovic VS Petri Makkonen
Niels Feijen VS Adjn Piknjac
Eklent Kaci VS Mario He
Ko Ping Chung VS Shane Wolford
John Morra VS Luong Duc Thien
Jayson Shaw VS Besar Spahiu
Wiktor Zielinski VS Mickey Krause
Jose Alberto Delgado VS Moritz Neuhausen
Chang Jung-Lin VS Hunter Lombardo
Ko Pin Yi VS Jan Van Lierop
Konrad Juszczyszyn VS Nguyen Anh Tuan
Robbie Capito VS Denis Grabe
Thorsten Hohmann VS Khalid Alghamdi
Francisco Sanchez Ruiz VS Oscar Dominguez

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Super Mario Is Italian Open Winner

Mario He

MARIO HE CLAIMED the Dynamic Billard Italian Open, winning the championship match 9-5 as he defeated Eklent Kaci. It was He’s first Euro Tour title in over three years, having reached the semi-final stage in the last two Tour events. Despite having a very consistent year and going deep at any number of tournaments, this was He’s first victory of 2022.

The Italian Open took place at the Best Western Premium BHR Treviso Hotel and started out with nearly 230 players which played down to the final four for the Monday evening televised stages. He and Kaci were the last two men standing and both played their parts in an entertaining finale.

Commented He; “It feels very good, especially when you come very close all the time. It’s another award for playing good but I think I needed it. It feels really good before you go into the holiday break before next year and I’m very happy about this win.

“When you are that close all the time, you want to win at least one or a few tournaments but there are so many other great players who can play a perfect set on you. This time I played really good and I got the rolls in some matches – I could have been out earlier but when you get lucky, you have to take it and still play good and try to win it.”

Both players got to grips straight away and they shared the first four racks with their breaks to set the score at 2-2 in the early stages. He took the fifth game, running out from his break, before Kaci found himself blocked out after downing two balls in the next. His jump shot on the 3-ball wobbled in the jaws and stayed out, enabling He to take one against the break for a 4-2 lead.

The Austrian had his break working well for him as two balls went in the next and with the remainder out in the open, he cleared the table for a three-rack lead at 5-2. That became 6-2 following a dry break from Eklent but he got to the table in the next and ran out to reduce the deficit to 6-3. That became 6-4 following another solid break-off but Mario came with some excellent shots in the next game to keep himself at the table and run-out for a 7-4 lead.

There were multiple visits in the next rack but it was Kaci who took it after He found himself blocked by the knuckle of the centre pocket with just two balls on the table. His jump shot failed to connect with the 8-ball and it became 7-5. A solid break from Mario gave him a look at the run out which he took advantage of to reach the hill.

They both exchanged high-quality safeties in what was the final rack before Kaci finally failed to make contact, kicking at the 1-ball, to give Mario ball-in-hand and a golden chance to close the match out, which he did to secure the title.

He continued, “It was closer than what the final score was and it could have been way closer. I didn’t break that well but I got away with it, making a ball and still having a shot at it. Eklent broke good but didn’t have as many shots as me after the break so that was the key in this match. I’m looking forward to taking a break, getting some energy for next year and just relaxing at home with family and friends.”

Earlier in the semi-finals, Kaci had won 9-5 over Miesko Fortunski (Poland) who had gamely battled to the closing stages of the tournament despite using a succession of borrowed cues after his own set went missing in transit. Mario He had made his way to the final, derailing Wiktor Zielinski by a similar scoreline in their semi-final.

As well as the prize money, there are Tour ranking points on offer as well as world ranking points, so there is everything to play for. All Euro Tour tournaments are 9-ball and players compete in a double-elimination format, playing down to the last 32 competitors, and then single elimination until the finish. All matches are races to 9 racks with alternate break.

All the matches can be viewed live at as well as selected matches on Facebook Live on the EPBF page. Results, live scoring and draw are available at

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Day Two Completes In Treviso

Szymon Kural

DAY TWO OF the Dynamic Billard Italian Open played out today (Saturday) at the Best Western Premium BHR Treviso Hotel. With 230 players and 20 tables, there are plenty of matches to get through and as a consequence the Italian Open is extended to four days, concluding on Monday evening with the live televised semi-finals and final.

There are 32 players remaining on the winner’s side of the bracket including Poland’s Szymon Kural who earlier this week triumphed in the WPA Predator World U19 Championship. The 18-year-old from Krakow went undefeated through that tournament, and after a brief pit stop in home town Krakow, hit the road bound for Treviso.

So far, he has three wins from three matches and defeated French No.1 Alex Montpelier 9-6 in the main arena to book his spot in the winners’ qualification round where he will face Alex Kazakis (Greece) at midday on Sunday.

Commented Kural; “It feels fine, nice, because again, I played very well. I beat a very good player and Alex also played very well. His break though, didn’t work so good and my break was a bit better so overall I’m happy and looking forward to playing Alex Kazakis tomorrow.

“I’m tired but I’ll fight till the end and we’ll see how that works. I will do my best as always and I will try to play my best pool. I’m feeling quite confident because four days ago I won the best title of my life – the World Junior Championship – so I’m confident and I’ll have a lot of fun,” he added.

Another Pole, Wiktor Zielinski, is still on course to usurp the No.1 spot from Francisco Sanchez Ruiz as he too finds himself in the winners’ qualification draw where he will face Tomasz Kaplan. Other big guns still undefeated include Mario He, Eklent Kaci, Niels Feijen, Ronni Regli, Dennis Grabe and veteran Ralf Souquet.

Jonas Souto

On the losers’ side of the draw, the final featured match was a cracker between another former WPA World Junior Champion in Spain’s Jonas Souto and experienced Romanian Babken Melkonyan. The Bucharest man played at a high level as he led throughout but struggled as the finishing line approached.

Souto’s break wasn’t working to any great effect and it was Melkonyan who reached the hill first at 8-6, having led 4-1 in the early stages.  A snooker from Souto saw Melkonyan escape but scratch in the process. With ball-in-hand, the Spaniard made hard work of it but soon found himself level at 8-8. Breaking for the match, Souto found something and delivered his best of the match and from there he ran out for a tight victory.

He said afterwards, “I don’t know how I won that! It was strange in the beginning as I didn’t make a miss and I was 4-1 down as he didn’t miss a ball. He was playing perfect and I managed to comeback under pressure and he missed a little bit more but he played unbelievable. I tried my best all the time and I won 9-8 but it was a difficult, tough match. I think I was breaking well but just didn’t get the rolls but in the last rack I had the luck and made the run out.

“At this Euro Tour, if you lose in the first or second rounds, you need a lot of energy for all those matches because there’s five or six of them to get through but I’ll give it my best and if I do, I do. And if not then it’s onto the next one,” he added.

Play continues tomorrow (Sunday) with the remainder of Losers’ Round Three, followed by two more Losers’ Side rounds, then the last 32 qualification matches on both sides of the bracket. Play commences at 9.00am.

As well as the prize money, there are Tour ranking points on offer as well as world ranking points, so there is everything to play for. All Euro Tour tournaments are 9-ball and players compete in a double-elimination format, playing down to the last 32 competitors, and then single elimination until the finish. All matches are races to 9 racks with alternate break.

All the matches can be viewed live at as well as selected matches on Facebook Live on the EPBF page. In addition, the semi-finals and final, played out on Monday night, will be live or highlights on the following television stations across Europe;

SportKlub HD – Serbia, Slovenia, Croatia, Montenegro, North Macedonia,
Bosnia Herzegovina, Greece
Eyecons – Netherlands)
SportKlub – Poland
ORF – Austria
B1B Box – Bulgaria

Results, live scoring and draw are available at

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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

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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