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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.

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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 www.wntlivescores.com.

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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2024 UK Open Pool Championship – Only 64 Remain In Telford

Ko Ping Yi and Ko Ping Chang (Taka Wu/Matchroom Multi Sport)

Only 64 players remain after day three of the BetVictor 2024 UK Open Pool Championship at the Telford International Centre with Eklent Kaçi continuing his title defence into the single elimination stage live on broadcasters worldwide, including DAZN, Viaplay, and Sky Sports in the UK.

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Kaçi secured his spot by defeating the Danish viking Mickey Krause with a solid 9-6 victory, joining top World Nineball Tour players like Francisco Sanchez Ruiz, Shane Van Boening, Fedor Gorst, and Joshua Filler in the last 64.

Tough matches for both Mosconi Cup captains, with Skyler Woodward making a terrific comeback winning 5 racks after being down 8-4. Meanwhile, Jayson Shaw narrowly secured his place, after capitalising on Besar Spanhiu missed a 6-9 combo at 7-7, allowing Shaw to execute a carom to win the rack and take back control.

Ko Pin Yi and Ko Ping Chung delivered dominant 9-3 victories side by side on tables one and two to secure their places, while Ko Ping Han fell short against Petr Urban, losing 8-7 and exiting the tournament.

Kledio Kaçi, brother of the defending champion, maintained his winning momentum with a convincing 9-2 win over Thorsten Hohmann from Germany. Carlo Biado also advanced to the last 64, dominating the table once more with a commanding 9-0 victory over Phuong Nam Pham.

James Aranas and the Austrian Trio Albin Ouschan, Mario He, and Max Lechner fell into the loser brackets but rallied in their ‘second chance’ matches to secure spots in tomorrow’s single elimination stage.

Snooker champion Garry Wilson clinched a tense 9-8 victory over two-time World Pool Masters champion David Alcaide, advancing further in the tournament. Alcaide moved into the losers’ qualification but failed to find redemption, losing to Tobias Bongers. Amongst the casualties on the third day were Ralf Souquet, Pia Filler, Sanjin Pehlivanovic, Moritz Neuhausen, and Karl Boyes.

Last 64 Draw

The Last 64 draw was done at the completion of play with the pick of the round including a tasty encounter between defending champion Eklent Kaçi and Mario He. Other stand out ties include Jayson Shaw against Tobias Bonger and Wiktor Zielinski against Alvin Anggito.

For the full draw and live rack-by-rack scoring will be available throughout the event at www.wntlivescores.com.

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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2024 UK Open Pool Championship – Rocky Start For Kaci In Title Defence

Eklent Kaci

Defending Champion Eklent Kaçi’s title defence kicked off with tough battle against Jose Alberto Delgado on the opening day of the BetVictor 2024 UK Open Pool Championship at the Telford International Centre, with the likes of Francisco Sanchez Ruiz, Fedor Gorst, Shane Van Boening, and Duong Quoc Hoang amongst the list of top names to not fumble yet live on broadcasters worldwide, including DAZN, Viaplay, and Sky Sports in the UK.

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Kaçi faced a testing start on day one, locked in a neck-and-neck matchup with Spanish player Jose Alberto Delgado. Delgado took an early lead, but Kaçi rallied back after a series of rack wins exchanged between the two. Despite miscuing the 9-ball in rack 16, Kaçi managed to regain control after a scratch from break, securing his first win of the tournament.

Top-ranked players like No.1 WNT Francisco Sanchez Ruiz, Shane Van Boening, Fedor Gorst, Joshua Filler, and Mario He had smooth victories in their opening matches. However, the Austrian, Max Lechner faced his first defeat against Cypriot Antonis Brabin, who finished the day with two consecutive wins.

Duong Quoc Hoang continued his winning streak from the Scottish Open, defeating Spencer Oliver from Great Britain and the American Danny Olsen with scores of 9-2 each. Meanwhile, last year’s World Cup of Pool winner, Johann Chua, dominated Vincent Facquet 9-0 and later secured a close 9-7 win against fellow Filipino Bernie Reglario.

The Ko brothers, Pin Yi and Ping Chung, sailed through their initial rounds in the UK Open, while Ko Ping Han made a remarkable comeback against Korean star Seo Seoa. However, Ping Han fell short against the Brit Imran Majid in his second match, losing 9-7.

2023 World Pool Championship finalist, Mohammad Soufi faced off against Lin Tsung Han from Chinese Taipei, narrowly clinching a 9-7 victory. However, Soufi struggled in his following match against the rising star Sam ‘Ryno’ Henderson, who capitalised on Soufi’s errors to secure a well-fought win.

Adding to the excitement, Kledio Kaçi, the younger brother of the defending UK Open champion, made a memorable impression on day one, with a decisive 9-1 victory against Ali Asgar Merchant, followed by a 9-5 win against the Estonian, Denis Grabe.

Pia Filler, the first signed woman WNT professional, delivered a strong performance against Chris Wattanawonna, winning 9-5 against the Thai player. However, Filler faced a challenging match against Dutch cueist, Marc Bijsterbosch, losing in a tense hill-hill battle.

Commentating duo Jeremy Jones and Karl Boyes had mixed results on day one; Jones lost to Babken Melkonyan in a hill-hill match, while ‘Box Office’ Boyes defeated Konrad Juszczyszyn with a commendable 9-6 win. However, Boyes failed to maintain his momentum against the Indonesian Alvin Anggito, who showcased his skill with a dominant 9-2 victory in the pair’s second match.

Live rack-by-rack scoring will be available throughout the event at www.wntlivescores.com.

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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Sanchez Ruiz Ready To Rule The World In Jeddah With Richest-Ever World Pool Championship In Saudi Arabia For First Time

World Nineball Tour No.1 Francisco Sanchez Ruiz has heralded a grand, new era for the sport as he looks forward to defending his world title at this year’s World Pool Championship – which marks the beginning of a major 10-year partnership for the premier tournament in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

The crown jewel of the WNT, the World Pool Championship, will be held at the Green Halls, Jeddah in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia between 3-8 June, in partnership with the Saudi Arabian Billiard & Snooker Federation (SABSF) and the Saudi Arabian Ministry of Sport. 128 of the world’s elite cueists will battle it out in a double-elimination format for the record-breaking prize fund of $1,000,000, and a top prize of $250,000 – both the highest ever on the World Nineball Tour.

Along with reigning and defending world champion Francisco Sanchez Ruiz, five-time US Open champion and 2022 world champion Shane Van Boening and 2018 world champion Joshua Filler will be among the high-profile names competing for the game’s greatest individual prize this summer.

Sanchez Ruiz said: “This is an incredibly exciting time for the World Nineball Tour and a sign of the future direction of our sport. The World Championship in Saudi Arabia marks a historic moment for pool and I am really looking forward to defending my title amongst the world’s best in Jeddah.”

The field will feature the top 100 from the World Nineball Tour Rankings, with the remaining 28 players made up of wildcard entries, 10 of whom will be given to the host nation, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia – these include Saad Aldress, Ahmed Al jabar, Khalid Alotaibi, Ahmed Fairaq, Khalid Al Ghamdi, Hussain Mustafa, Ahmed Al Ahmadi, Fahad Alharbi, Nawaf Shamardal and Othman Alzahrani.The cutoff for the top 100 WNT players will be determined at the conclusion of the UK Open 7-12 May.

In this exciting new partnership, the move will help establish the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as a new home of the World Pool Championship for the next decade, with the country becoming one of the fastest growing countries in world sport. Since 2015 and the introduction of Vision 2030, Saudi Arabia has hosted over 100 international sports events and welcomed more than 2.6 million sports fans as it looks to inspire its people to live happier and healthier lifestyles through sports participation.

It is an approach that has been working especially within its young population, of which there is over 20 million people under the age of 30 years old. Since 2015, Saudi Arabia has tripled the number of official sports federations from 32 to 97 federations. Everything from Kite surfing, to boxing, from Beach Volleyball to Padel. Whilst during the same time, participation rates in sports have also tripled with more boys and girls, men and women playing more sports than ever before, including an 150% increase in female sport.

The landmark event, which starts on June 3, will feature 223 matches over six days of competition, with 50 televised hours of pool and 100 streaming hours broadcast to every territory around the globe.

Defending world champion Francisco Sanchez Ruiz will head to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia seeking to retain the crown that he won last February in Kielce, Poland against Syria’s Mohammad Soufi.

The decade-long deal will deliver a sharp focus and commitment to growing the game in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, which includes encouraging grassroots awareness and playing pathways for local talent over the next 10 years.

Saudi Arabia Billiard & Snooker Federation President, Dr. Nasser Saab Al-Shammari added: “In June this year, new sporting history will be written in Saudi Arabia, and we couldn’t be more excited. We’ve literally never had the opportunity to welcome world class talents like Francisco Sanchez Ruiz, Shane Van Boening and Joshua Filler to play live for fans here. So that will be extremely special for us. But to go beyond hosting the top stars by also having the best ten local Saudi players take part, will open-up an entire new world and will give our players the experience of a lifetime.

“Saudi’s sporting future and ambitions will see us becoming far more than just welcoming hosts. We want to connect, share and compete at the highest possible level in the years ahead. That journey starts this summer.”

Matchroom Multi-Sport CEO, Emily Frazer said: “We are incredibly grateful to the Ministry of Sport for Saudi Arabia for this unique opportunity. We believe this landmark 10-year deal will provide the catalyst to developing the stars for tomorrow from this region, supported in conjunction with a leading junior event alongside the World Pool Championship, as well as training top-level officials who will further enhance the sport here in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. It underlines the great strides that are being taken by the World Nineball Tour as we continue to provide unrivalled, life-changing opportunities and competition for our professional players.”

For the latest news, schedules and ticket details, please visit matchroom.com

ABOUT WORLD NINEBALL TOUR
Introducing the World Nineball Tour (WNT), a game-changing initiative in professional pool. With a $5 million minimum prize fund and over 40 ranking events worldwide, the WNT heralds a new era for the sport. Committed to fairness, transparency, and commercial viability, the WNT offers players a clear path to success by providing opportunities to accrue World Nineball Ranking points and gain access to prestigious tournaments on the calendar.

For media enquiries please contact: pool@matchroom.com

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2024 World Pool Masters Celebrates Spectacular Success

Jacqueline Buerger from Moltke Sports, Fedor Gorst with Emily Frazer

The 2024 World Pool Masters at Halle39 in Hildesheim, Germany proved to be an electrifying spectacle on the World Nineball Tour calendar, with local organiser Moltke Sports helping orchestrate the remarkable event.

Fans from around the globe tuned it to watch the 2024 World Pool Masters, thanks to host broadcaster Sky Sports in the UK and Ireland, DAZN in the USA and Brazil, alongside Viaplay in Scandinavia, the Baltics, Netherlands, Poland, and Matchroom.Live in selected territories.

Celebrating three decades of this historic tournament, the competition showcased the unparalleled talent of the top WNT players across four thrilling days, with German fans at the venue, contributing to the electric atmosphere of this iconic event.

Reflecting on the tournament’s success, 2024 World Pool Masters winner Fedor Gorst praised the historic occasion, stating: “It was an unforgettable tournament, set in the perfect venue and location.”

The runner up of the tournament Joshua Filler added “It was an honour to compete in my home country this week, surrounded by an amazing crowd of fans. Their support was nothing short of incredible, making every moment on that stage a privilege.”

CEO of Matchroom Multi Sports, Emily Frazer said: “This year’s event was a resounding success, thanks to the collaborative efforts of Moltke Sports being instrumental in creating a truly memorable tournament in a fantastic location.”

“Thank you to both the phenomenal World Nineball Tour players, as well as the enthusiastic fans whose passion added to the spectacle. I look forward with great anticipation to discuss the future of this tournament following on from this iconic 30th anniversary of World Pool Masters.”

CEO of Moltke Sports, Werner Von Moltke said: “We are very happy that we had the chance to organize the World Pool Masters alongside Matchroom for this special anniversary and would like to thank Emily Frazer for her trust. We consider our first pool event a great success, which has certainly set new standards in Germany. We have seen world-class nineball and no Hollywood screenwriter could have written a more thrilling script for the final. Building on this experience, as a partner of Matchroom we are looking to further develop nineball in continental Europe.”

ABOUT WORLD NINEBALL TOUR
Introducing the World Nineball Tour (WNT), a game-changing initiative in professional pool. With a $5 million minimum prize fund and over 40 ranking events worldwide, the WNT heralds a new era for the sport. Committed to fairness, transparency, and commercial viability, the WNT offers players a clear path to success by providing opportunities to accrue World Nineball Ranking points and gain access to prestigious tournaments on the calendar.

For media enquiries please contact: pool@matchroom.com

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Fedor Gorst Wins 2024 World Pool Masters

Fedor Gorst

Fedor Gorst has won the 2024 World Pool Masters title in Hildesheim, Germany, beating Joshua Filler in the final 13-12, the longest match in the tournament’s history, presented in partnership with local organiser Moltke Sports and host broadcaster Sky Sports.

Filler won the lag but scratched from the opening break, handing Gorst the chance to clear up, only to find himself hooked after attempting to pot the 8 ball. The opponents exchanged misses on the 8 ball until the American eventually potted it, but his attempt at a bank shot with the 9 ball failed, allowing Filler to clinch the first rack and kickstart a three-rack winning streak.

Fedor secured his first rack win in the fourth after Filler’s dry break, but he gifted the advantage back to Filler with a dry break of his own in the sixth. Seeking a comeback, Fedor exploited Filler’s miss on the 4 ball in the seventh, following it up with a well-executed safety shot in the eighth, forcing Filler to falter on a 5 ball jump shot. Fedor seized the opportunity to level the score, then cleared the table in the ninth to take the lead.

Filler countered Fedor’s hook of the 6 ball in the tenth with an impressive jump shot into a bank 6-9 combo, levelling the field. The pair proceeded to battle over the next seven racks, pouncing on any small errors made by their opponent. However, by rack 17, Gorst broke away from the level field to establish a two-rack advantage 10-8

The ‘Killer’ Filler capitalised on Fedor’s failure to pot the 3 ball in the nineteenth, bulldozing his way to the hill. However, a dry break in rack 23 stopped Filler’s momentum, allowing Gorst to take back control of the table to bring it to hill-hill. Following a tense comeback from being 10-12 down, Fedor Gorst gracefully cleared the table in the final rack, securing his first Matchroom Major title.

Fedor Gorst said: “It feels unbelievable! Both of us had crazy rolls in this match. I thought it was over for me but somehow it turned around for me. Hats off to Matchroom, this is an unbelievable tournament to win.”

NEXT WORLD NINEBALL TOUR EVENT 

The Jacoby Scottish Open will take place the weekend before the next Matchroom event with the tournament set to be held at McGoldricks Sports Bar in Glasgow with the world’s elite set to descend on one of the UK’s most historic sporting cities for a vital World Nineball Tour Ranking event and tune-up ahead of the UK Open Pool Championship.

NEXT MATCHROOM EVENT 

The first signature Matchroom major open event comes next at the Telford International Centre, Telford for the UK Open Pool Championship from May 7-12 with the Jayson Shaw Junior Open taking place on May 10-11. Buy your tickets here from £20.

ABOUT WORLD NINEBALL TOUR
Introducing the World Nineball Tour (WNT), a game-changing initiative in professional pool. With a $5 million minimum prize fund and over 40 ranking events worldwide, the WNT heralds a new era for the sport. Committed to fairness, transparency, and commercial viability, the WNT offers players a clear path to success by providing opportunities to accrue World Nineball Ranking points and gain access to prestigious tournaments on the calendar.

For media enquiries please contact: pool@matchroom.com

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Joshua Filler and Fedor Gorst To Contest 2024 World Pool Masters Final

Joshua Filler

Joshua Filler and Fedor Gorst will contest the 2024 World Pool Masters final at the at Halle39 in Hildesheim, Germany, in partnership with local organiser Moltke Sports and host broadcaster Sky Sports.

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Semi-Final Results

Joshua Filler 11-8 Ko Pin Yi
Fedor Gorst 11-7 Jayson Shaw

The semi-finals commenced with a mouthwatering matchup, featuring defending champion Ko Pin Yi and the 2022 World Pool Masters champion, Joshua Filler, both eyeing their second World Pool Masters title.

Filler took an early lead in the opening racks, with Ko closely trailing behind, securing a victory in the third rack. However, Ko’s missed attempt to pocket the 5 ball in the fourth rack handed Filler an opportunity to showcase his prowess with an incredible bank shot on the 8 ball. The ‘Prince of Pool’ retaliated against Filler’s safety play with the 1 ball, setting himself up for a 1-9 combo off the bank.

Despite the initially balanced playing field, Ko’s failure to sink two long shots in racks 7 and 9 paved the way for Filler to establish an unassailable lead in the semi-final. Filler’s five-rack winning streak was interrupted in rack 12 when Ko fluked the 9 ball off the 2 ball after Filler played a safety shot. In rack 14, Filler attempted to seize back control but missed the 4 ball, allowing Ko to execute a spectacular jump shot on the 5 ball and secure his third consecutive rack win.

However, Ko’s winning streak was short-lived as he failed to pocket the 5 ball in the following rack, enabling Filler to not only clear up but also reach the hill in rack 16. Despite Ko’s valiant efforts to secure two more rack wins in the seventeenth and eighteenth, his luck ran out in rack 19 when he scratched while attempting to pocket the 1 ball. This setback allowed ‘Killer’ Filler to eliminate the defending champion and advance into the final with his head held high.

The semi-finals concluded with a grudge match between the British billiards player  Jayson Shaw and the American sensation Fedor Gorst, seeking vengeance after his defeat to Shaw in the Hanoi Open last year.

Fedor initiated his quest for revenge with an 8-9 combo in rack 1, only to concede the advantage to Shaw in the second rack following a scratch, levelling the playing field. In rack 6, Fedor missed the 2 ball, seemingly setting the stage for Shaw to capitalise, but the Brit mirrored Fedor’s error, missing the 2 ball and handing the rack to the American. ‘Eagle Eye’ Shaw retaliated after Fedor failed a jumpshot on the 2 ball in rack 7, allowing Shaw to inch past Gorst and seize the lead in the subsequent rack.

Gorst redeemed himself with a remarkable jumpshot across the table to pocket the 3 ball and regain control in rack 9, sparking a fierce exchange between the two cueists. By rack 15, Shaw attempted to break from a level playing field with a safety shot, but Fedor capitalised by potting the 2 ball, igniting the American’s sweet revenge in a four-rack winning streak to eliminate the Brit and move closer to securing the title.

The final begins at 7 pm UK time tonight, with 13 being the magic number for victory and a World Pool Masters crown for either Joshua Filler or Fedor Gorst.

Watch live on Sky Sports in the UK and Ireland, DAZN in the USA, Spain, Italy, and Brazil as well as on Viaplay in the Netherlands, Poland, Scandinavia and the Baltics. If no broadcaster is available in your country, watch the action on Matchroom.Live. See where to watch in your country here

The 30th Anniversary of World Pool Masters will maintain last year’s most challenging format, with 16 players competing to take home a $40,000 share from an enticing $125,000 prize pool. Opening round ties will be Race to 9 with the Matchroom break box, magic-racking, and winner breaks in action, with the tournament stretching going to race to 10 for the quarter-finals, 11 for the semi-finals, and 13 for the final.

ABOUT WORLD NINEBALL TOUR
Introducing the World Nineball Tour (WNT), a game-changing initiative in professional pool. With a $5 million minimum prize fund and over 40 ranking events worldwide, the WNT heralds a new era for the sport. Committed to fairness, transparency, and commercial viability, the WNT offers players a clear path to success by providing opportunities to accrue World Nineball Ranking points and gain access to prestigious tournaments on the calendar.

For media enquiries please contact: pool@matchroom.com

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World Pool Masters 2024 – Defending Champion Ko Pin Yi Knocks Out WNT No.1 Francisco Sanchez In Quarter-Final

Ko Pin Yi

Defending champion Ko Pin Yi knocked out WNT No.1 Francisco Sanchez Ruiz to advance to the semi-finals of the 2024 World Pool Masters at Halle39 in Hildesheim, Germany, in partnership with local organizer Moltke Sports and host broadcaster Sky Sports.

BRACKETS

Despite securing the opening rack, Ruiz suffered a setback when he scratched from the break in rack 2, igniting a dominant winning streak for the ‘Prince of Pool,’ Ko Pin Yi. The Spanish cueist made an effort to stage a comeback in rack 6 with a jump shot over the 7 ball to pot the 2 ball, but his momentum was short-lived after missing the 4 ball in the same rack.

In rack 11, Ko Pin Yi’s streak nearly came to an end at the hill after failing to pot the 2. Ruiz, eager to maintain possession, opted for safety when attempting to kick the 2 ball, only to inadvertently fluke it, leaving himself trapped from the 3 ball. Capitalising on Ruiz’s error, Ko Pin Yi secured victory in the quarter-final with a commanding 10-1 win, further solidifying his title defence.

The outcome was different for the other brother, Ko Ping Chung, who  was dismantled at the start of the day by Joshua Filler, who seized the lead in rack 5 after Ko’s failure to execute a 2-9 combo. Killer Filler showcased an exceptional 3-ball long shot in the sixth rack, effortlessly clearing the table once again.

Rack 8 witnessed a tense exchange between the two, as Ko scratched the 2 ball, handing control back to Filler. However, Filler’s missed shot on the 8 ball provided a glimmer of opportunity for the ‘King Killer’ Ko, who attempted a jump shot to pot the 8 ball, only to miss and inadvertently assist Filler’s winning streak.

Filler continued his masterclass, executing a 6-8 carom swiftly followed by a 6-7 combo in rack 11. Despite a fleeting moment of hope in rack 13 with a 3-8 combo, it proved insufficient for the Chinese Taipei star, who succumbed to the German powerhouse, who moves closer to claiming his second World Pool Masters title on home turf.

Entering the evening matches, Fedor Gorst secured another victory over an Austrian contender in the World Pool Masters, this time defeating Albin Ouschan. Foreshadowing the outcome, the opening rack witnessed a golden break for Fedor, marking the beginning of his composed and tactical performance. Gorst embarked on a six-rack streak, executing a flawless 2-8 combo in rack 2 and a bank shot of the 9 ball in rack 4. In the seventh, Albin capitalised on Fedor’s failure to pot the 3 ball, allowing Albin to perform a 3-6 combo to clear the table and claim his first rack victory.

In rack 8, another opportunity arose for the Austrian, who accidentally fluked the 4 ball while attempting to pot the 3 ball. However, it proved insufficient for Ouschan, who missed the 3 ball once again, handing control back to Fedor. To seal the quarter-final with ease, Gorst played a safety shot with the 2 ball, prompting Albin to foul and set up Gorst’s 2-9 combo to reach the hill. In typical Fedor Gorst fashion, he cleared the table in the eleventh rack to advance to the semi-finals with a comfortable 10-1 victory.

The quarter-finals concluded with a gripping showdown between the two Mosconi Cup giants, Shane Van Boening and Jayson Shaw. Van Boening asserted his dominance in the opening racks, capitalizing on Shaw’s break scratch in rack 1, followed by a golden break in rack 2. Shaw mounted a comeback from a 7-3 deficit, seizing the opportunity when Van Boening missed the 3 ball in rack 10, eventually taking the lead to level the score at rack 14, making it 7-7.

Desperate to reclaim his initial lead, Shane edged ahead 8-7 in rack 15 when Shaw failed to hook the 2 ball. Shaw, composed as ever, redeemed himself in the following rack to tie the score at 8-8 after Shane struggled to pot the 1 ball. The odds seemed to favour Shaw in rack 17, who fluked the 9 ball when attempting to pot the 5 to reach the hill. Maintaining his composure, Jayson Shaw cleared the table, leaving no opportunity for Shane to stop his comeback 8-10 victory.

The semi-finals of the World Pool Masters kick off at 12:30 pm CET tomorrow with Joshua Killer Filler challenging defending champion Ko Pin Yi, followed by Fedor Gorst vs. Jayson Shaw. The winners of both matches will go on to play in the final at 7 pm in the ultimate showdown.

Watch live on Sky Sports in the UK and Ireland, DAZN in the USA, Spain, Italy, and Brazil as well as on Viaplay in the Netherlands, Poland, Scandinavia and the Baltics. If no broadcaster is available in your country, watch the action on Matchroom.Live. See where to watch in your country here

The 30th Anniversary of World Pool Masters will maintain last year’s most challenging format, with 16 players competing to take home a $40,000 share from an enticing $125,000 prize pool. Opening round ties will be Race to 9 with the Matchroom break box, magic-racking, and winner breaks in action, with the tournament stretching going to race to 10 for the quarter-finals, 11 for the semi-finals, and 13 for the final.

ABOUT WORLD NINEBALL TOUR
Introducing the World Nineball Tour (WNT), a game-changing initiative in professional pool. With a $5 million minimum prize fund and over 40 ranking events worldwide, the WNT heralds a new era for the sport. Committed to fairness, transparency, and commercial viability, the WNT offers players a clear path to success by providing opportunities to accrue World Nineball Ranking points and gain access to prestigious tournaments on the calendar.

For media enquiries please contact: pool@matchroom.com

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2024 World Pool Masters – Filler’s Round One Redemption

Joshua Filler

2022 World Pool Masters champion Joshua Filler claimed redemption in the opening round of the 2024 edition at Halle39 in Hildesheim, Germany in partnership with local organiser Moltke Sports and host broadcaster Sky Sports.

BRACKETS

The stakes were high for Filler as he entered this year’s event, following his early exit from last year’s World Pool Masters and his defeat to Kaçi in the final of the 2023 UK Open.

Kaci initially seized the lead in the opening racks, capitalising on Filler’s struggles with his long shots. However, the advantage was short-lived as the two players engaged in a back-and-forth battle. The momentum shifted when the score reached 6-6 in rack 12, with Filler showcasing his skill by strategically hooking Kaci behind the 6 ball. In an attempt to regain control, Kaci scratched the 3 ball, leading to Killer Filler dominating the final rounds and securing victory. This win marked Filler’s much-needed redemption, dashing Kaci’s hopes of a comeback and propelling Filler closer to his second World Pool Masters title.

Filler said: “The only thing that stays in my mind is the way I started; I couldn’t find a pocket. But I waited for my chances and luckily in the end it turned around. I started feeling good and I could feel the table better.”

The excitement of round one continued with the battle of the Austrians. Living up to his nickname “Smooth Operator,” Albin Ouschan demonstrated impeccable composure on the grey cloth as he navigated through the racks. However, at 7-0, his opponent Max Lechner secured his first rack after executing a trap that not only caused Albin to foul but also set up Lechner for a 1-9 combo to clinch the rack. Max continued to showcase his prowess with combinations, executing a 2-8-9 combo to win rack 13. Despite his efforts, Lechner faltered at rack 14, failing to pot the 3 ball and allowing Albin to secure victory in the race to 9.

The evening session concluded with a commanding performance from the 2023 Hanoi Open champion, Jayson Shaw, who faced off against the Singaporean cueist, Aloysius Yapp. Although Yapp secured the first rack, a scratch in the second rack opened the door for Shaw to take control, winning nine consecutive racks. The precision of ‘Eagle Eye’ Shaw was evident throughout his dominant display, showcasing an exceptional jump kick shot on the 4 ball in rack 3, followed by the tournament’s first golden break in rack 6, and a flawless 3-9 combo to reach the hill. Shaw’s stellar performance reached its pinnacle in a resounding 9-1 victory, bringing the evening session to a thrilling close.

The remaining Round 1 matches get underway from 12 pm CET tomorrow as defending champion Ko Pin Yi meets David ‘El Matador’ Alcaide before Ko Pin Chung takes on Wiktor Zielinski of Poland to wrap up the afternoon action. The evening sees WNT No.1 Francisco Sanchez Ruiz once again face James Aranas in the first round, followed by Fedor Gorst taking on Mario He, ahead of Shane Van Boening and Duong Quoc Hoang wrapping up the Round 1 action.

Watch live on Sky Sports in the UK and Ireland, DAZN in the USA, Spain, Italy, and Brazil as well as on Viaplay in the Netherlands, Poland, Scandinavia and the Baltics. If no broadcaster is available in your country, watch the action on Matchroom.Live. See where to watch in your country here

The 30th Anniversary of World Pool Masters will maintain last year’s most challenging format, with 16 players competing to take home a $40,000 share from an enticing $125,000 prize pool. Opening round ties will be Race to 9 with the Matchroom break box, magic-racking, and winner breaks in action, with the tournament stretching going to race to 10 for the quarter-finals, 11 for the semi-finals, and 13 for the final.

ABOUT WORLD NINEBALL TOUR
Introducing the World Nineball Tour (WNT), a game-changing initiative in professional pool. With a $5 million minimum prize fund and over 40 ranking events worldwide, the WNT heralds a new era for the sport. Committed to fairness, transparency, and commercial viability, the WNT offers players a clear path to success by providing opportunities to accrue World Nineball Ranking points and gain access to prestigious tournaments on the calendar.

Go to discussion...