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Las Vegas World Cup Groups Drawn

Hugo Patino and Pedro Piedrabuena from the 2021 Silver Cup

The UMB has drawn the groups for the March 27 to April 2 World Cup in Las Vegas.  The groups, player list, and timetable can be found on the UMB website ( under the Active Events tab.  Twenty-two (22) USBA players will participate in the World Cup.

The Las Vegas World Cup, sponsored by Predator, will be held at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino. Per the UMB rules, Predator has selected Pedro Piedrabuena and Hugo Patiño as its wildcard entries into the 1/16 main tournament round at the World Cup. Piedrabuena won his 10th national championship crown in December 2021, and Patiño is a four-time USA title holder.
Joining Piedrabuena and Patiño in the World Cup are twenty (20) other USBA enthusiasts. Ten (10) USBA players have been placed into the groups per the UMB rules. Tae Kyu Lee and Miguel Torres, based on their world rankings, were placed into the PQ round. Lee won the 2020 US national tournament and finished second in the 2021 nationals. Torres has won the US national tournament twice. Five (5) USBA players, based on their finish in the 2021 US National tournament, have been placed into the PPQ round: Young Kyu Lee, Edward Gomez, John Park, Kang Lee, and Eric Kwon. Raymond Groot, who was selected by the USBA, has also been placed in the PPQ round. Mazin Shooni and Frank Torres, each a former national champion chosen by the USBA to participate in the World Cup, have been placed in the PPPQ round.
Ten (10) spots remain to be chosen for USBA entries into the World Cup. Eight (8) will be chosen on March 25 in a qualifier, and the other two (2) will be determined on March 26 in a second qualifier. The following USBA players are entered into the March 25 qualifier.


Mario Garcia
Quoc Vo
Seungkwon Hong
Raye Raskin
Ricardo Carranco
Jesus Corona
Ertan Tarhan
Carlos Villegas
Jorge Hernan John Patarroyo
Andres Fernandez
Jose Pelayo
Andres Mora
Vicke Pineda
Jairo Lenis
Zoel A Kehrt Matta
Camilo Medina
Chang Pyun
Jose Cruz
Julian Banol Molina
Ahmet Ozan
Jay Karahan
Ricky Carranco Sr.
Young Gul Lee
Henry Ugartechea
Guillermo Alejandro Sosa
Jovanny Caballos
Elmer Meza
Jose Delatorre
Ho Ahn
Bilal Khalifa
Olegario Gonzalez
Trinidad Espinosa


These thirty-two (32) players will be drawn into 8 groups of 4, with the winner of each group qualifying. On March 26, there will be a single elimination bracket to determine the final two (2) qualifiers. The players will play in a single-elimination bracket, with the two (2) finalists earning spots in the World Cup. SOME SPOTS ARE STILL AVAILABLE FOR THE MARCH 26 QUALIFIER. REGISTER ON THE USBA WEBSITE.

For any questions about the USBA qualifiers for the World Cup, or for the World Cup, call 410 599 8177.

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Ten Spots Remain for USBA World Cup

Mazin Shooni (Rick Schmitz – Rixx Images)

The USBA field for the Las Vegas World Cup is rounding out. The USBA has selected Mazin Shooni, Frank Torres and Raymon Groot to participate in the tournament. With their selection, ten spots remain for USBA players. These will be determined on March 25 and 26 at two qualifying tournaments to be held in Las Vegas prior to the start of the World Cup.

Three players selected by USBA

Shooni and Torres are past USBA national champions. Groot finished second in the 2020 USBA national tournament. All three have extensive international playing experience, with Torres’ second place finish in the 1987 World Championship being the most-notable highlight. They join nine other USBA players who have been selected to play in the tournament.

Two players have been selected by Predator, the host organizer for the World Cup, as its wildcards: Pedro Piedrabuena and Hugo Patiño. Piedrabuena finished first in the 2021 USBA national tournament. Patiño is a four-time USBA national champion. The USBA had previously selected the following players based on their top-eight placement in the 2021 National tournament: Tae Kyu Lee, Young Kyu Lee, Edward Gomez, John Park, Miguel Torres, Kang Lee, and Eric Kwon.

The Las Vegas World Cup, scheduled from March 27 to April 2, 2022 at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino, is one of eight similar tournaments on the UMB calendar for 2022. Each tournament is limited to 149 players.

Ten to be determined at qualifying tournament

Mazin Shooni Wins Dennis Dieckman Memorial 3 Cushion Tournament

Mazin Shooni

Thirty three players representing at least 10 different states converged at Amazin Billiards in Malden, Massachusetts for four days of 3 cushion billiards in honor of the late Dennis Dieckman, a friend of all in the billiard world.

The main event, a handicapped tournament, pitted the players in a round robin format fielding three flights of seven and two flights of six players.

In addition, the evening brought about a Scotch Doubles tournament featuring eight teams (16 players in all) that battled over three nights.
In the main event format, the top two players advanced to a single elimination final. In addition, the two best 3rd place finishers advanced to ensure 12 players into the final round. The top four finishers from the prelims, however, were granted byes, forcing the bottom eight to square off, with the top four joining the top four byes in a true single elimination round to the final game.

The top 4 finishers were:
Kris Kwon – record 5 & 0 averaging 1.069
Ian Mckelvey – record 5 & 1 averaging .654
Vicke Pineda – record 6 & 0 averaging .973
Joe DeAmato – record 5 & 0 averaging .921

Cleiton Rocha won his flight with a 5 & 1 record averaging .668, but was forced to play in the first round featuring eight players.
The other seven players were:
Mazin Shooni – 5 & 1; 1.171
Luis Aveiga – 4 & 1; 1.524
Ray Glennon – 3 & 2; .681
John Johnson – 4 & 2; .432
Ricardo Carranco – 5 & 1; .920
George Couture – 4 &2; .624
John Guldali – 4 & 1; .785

The charts will tell the tale from here but let’s mention a few notable happenings:

Mazin Shooni. First and foremost he was the emerging champion of this handicapped event. Mazin’s recent play had dipped just below the 1.000 average, but for this tournament his play brought back to memory the performance that won him the 2006 National Championship title. Mazin played many games over 1.400. He is, of course, the room owner, host of this event and is frankly responsible for the many tournaments happening around the country for several years now with more to come. Congratulations to our champion, Mazin.

Cleiton Rocha. Despite Mazin defeating him and knocking him into second place, he had a wonderful wonderful tournament. An established pool player, Cleiton took on and defeated many more experienced 3 cushion players, albeit playing at a handicap he’s not likely to ever see again thanks to his finishing average. Great playing Cleiton.

Luis Aveiga. Another highlight of the event happened in a preliminary match between Luis Aveiga and Richard Falanga. Luis was the top dog handicap wise, playing to 40, while Richard was playing to 20 points. With 20 points to start the match, Richard had a lead of 29-13 and seemed as though he might just hand Luis an early loss would not bode well for the highly-rated player’s chances. Then Luis stepped to the table and put together a high run the likes of which patrons of Amazin Billiards had never seen in tournament play before. Luis ran a 21, running the score to 34-29 in just a matter of minutes. Awesome work Luis.

Ian Mcklevey. How about Ian finishing 5 & 1 in his first ever tournament at Amazin Billiards and averaging .654 in doing so? You don’t see that too many times for a tournament newbie. He too may see a different handicap number in the future as well but so be it, congratulations on a fine showing.

Ben Sutherland. I also have to mention Big Ben Sutherland – not only for delivering once again a high quality live stream throughout the event, but also for winning two games in his flight. Ben’s a true beginner in the 3 cushion discipline, though it’s quite apparent that his cueing ability from playing pool is enhancing his promise. He loves the game and we love him, congrats Ben.

Ricardo Carranco. This gentleman is a highlight unto himself. In the eyes of many, myself included, he is the preeminent tournament director in the country. The fact that he plays in the tournament alongside running everything is a wonder in itself. Finishing 5 & 1, averaging 1.00 and being 5th overall while running the event? Awesome job. Congratulations and a big thank you from all.

Vicke Pineda. Vicke went 6 & 0, besting his friend Ricardo 40-39 and then losing in the semi-final match to his Boston friend, Mazin Shooni. Nice tournament Vicke.

Kris Kwon. He went undefeated in his flight, averaging over 1.00 and he too lost to the eventual winner Shooni in a single elimination match. Nice play Kris.

Joe DeAmato. Joe informed me that his own personal highlight was besting Master Champion Luis Aveiga in a quarter-final match and finishing 3rd overall with Mr Pineda.

John Guldali. He played superbly throughout, also losing to the eventual champion in the single elimination round.

Terrific showings also from Ray Glennon, George Couture and John Johnson in making the 12 man final round.

The Scotch Doubles winner was the team of Luis Aveiga and Mickey Campbell. Luis and Mickey beat a team comprised of Shooni and Falanga 30-14 to take the title.

Thanks and congratulations to all 33 players for making this 4th annual Dieckman memorial tournament a reality and special thanks once again to Ben Sutherland for stellar live streaming, to Ricardo Carranco Jr. for being the most efficient and approachable tournament director and to Mazin Shooni whose time, effort, money and dreams continue to make tournaments like this a reality and a memory for all its participants. A big thank you to Amazin Billiards Staff – Stevie Roy and Al Buontempo – who kept the play running smoothly with clean tables and balls.

Mazin and his organization, ‘3 cushion USA’ will be moving on to Tucson, Arizona in January. Visit the Amazin Billiards website or for posted details and stay tuned for updates.

Tiger Silver Cup 3-Cushion Event Underway

Day one of four of the 2021 Tiger Silver Cup has commenced at Vicke Pineda’s Silver Cue-Billiards in Huntington Park California. With a powerhouse field of 72 players in attendance, the event was originally scheduled for only 50 players to compete in a ‘tiered entry fee’ event ranging from $365-$125 (based on skill level). The event earned responses from 79 willing competitors and was re-capped by tournament director, Ricky Carranco just prior to last night’s player meeting and flight draw. A wide range of talent consisting of both US and Pan-American champions have flocked from all corners of the Americas to battle it out on nine  10 foot Verhoevens, maintained by the renowned table mechanic, Insoo Park.

The overwhelming support for the two promoters, Ricky and Vicke, shows an enduring strength of the sport of Three-Cushion Billiards in America, with the Tiger Products sponsored event boasting a star studded field of familiar names, defending 2019 ‘Cup’ recipient and champion, Pedro Piedrabuena, New York’s, Hugo Patino, former USBA president and founder of 3 CushionUSA’s, Mazin Shooni; Pan-American and Mexican Champions include, Javier Vera, Guillermo Sosa, Luis Aviega to name a few. Additional surprises are expected with names like Gilbert Najm, Raymond Groot, John Park, Stan Lee, Kevin Pham, Carlos Cruz and also the tournament promoters themselves (Ricky/Vicke) should cause a stir during these upcoming prelim rounds. 

This year’s tournament format will consist of three days of preliminary rounds (May 13-15), 12 flights of 6 players each competing in ‘round robin’ to 35 points, followed immediately by a single elimination, final bracket of the top 12 or the winner from each group. The event will also be slightly seeded, issuing a ‘bye’ to the top player of each group.

This event is scheduled to be live streamed by Daniel Busch and Point Of View Pool Media at POVPOOL on YouTube, however due to some technical issues there is a possibility that the broadcast might migrate to Facebook Live instead. Please stay tuned for more news and updates on this as they develop.

Also, in a surprise announcement, Vicke Pineda has decided to raise additional funds for the family of the dearly departed Luis Miguel Avila, donating $1,000 of a $3,000 in-house cue raffle at the event and redirecting another $1,000 to the prize fund of the event, making this year’s Cup event; $4,000 added!

Mazin Shooni Brings Another Successful 3-Cushion Event to Casino Del Sol in Tucson

Dinh Hoa

It might have had a different look from past events in Tucson Arizona, but it was another successful week of top 3-cushion action as Mazin Shooni brought a field of 73 players from all over North America, including players from Mexico and Columbia, back to Casino Del Sol in the beautiful Tucson desert from January 24th – 30th. 

Things kicked off on Sunday the 24th with 38 players competing in the 3-Cushion USA “B” Championships. This event was limited to players with less than a .8 points per round average, with players broken up into five round robin groups. The top three from each bracket were joined by the top fourth place finisher to move into a single elimination sixteen player bracket. 

The first round of the single elimination bracket shook things up, with four of the five group winners from the round robin stage losing in the first round. Paul Guernsey was the only group winner who advanced from the first elimination round. Guernsey scored a 25-18 win over Nghia Lam, and followed that up with a close 25-21 win over Jim Henrickson in the second round. 

The elimination bracket was down to four players for the third round of play, where David Thai rode a high run of six to eliminate Guernsey. The other third round match saw Dinh Hoa eliminate Dung Truong 25-22 in a 65 inning marathon. 

The final 30 point match was as close as expected, with Hoa defeating Thai 30-26. In the match win, Hoa had a high run of 7, tying Guernsey and Joe DeAmato for highest run of the elimination bracket. A number of players turned in high runs of 7 during the group brackets. 

Hoa earned $2,000 for first place, while Thai settled for $1,500 in second place prize money. 

Guillermo Sosa & Jesus Corona

While the B Championship (and the Handicap Championship that followed it) were being played during the day, a twelve team scotch doubles championship was played each night. Teams were separated into two groups of six, with the top two teams from each group advancing to a final four team round robin bracket. 

The event was won by Guillermo Sosa & Jesus Corona, who were the top team out of their group and then won two of three matches in the final group. Sosa & Corona’s one final group loss was to the team of Richard Carranco Jr. & Jim Henrickson. Carranco Jr. & Henrickson also won two of three matches in the final group, but ended in second place due to the total point tie-breaker. 

Sosa wasn’t done collecting prize money this week, as he added to his scotch doubles win with a win in the main event of the week, the Handicap Championship. 

The Handicap Championship saw seven groups of seven players each, competing in 40 point matches, advancing to a final sixteen player bracket. 

John Park and Guillermo Sosa

Sosa advanced from his group with a 5-1 record, only dropping a 40-33 match to the second place finisher in their group, Alfonso Torres. Torres’ 4-2 record in the group was enough to earn his place in the elimination bracket. 

The first round of the elimination bracket turned out like the first round of the B Championship elimination bracket with five of the seven group winners being eliminated. The other group winner to advance out of the first round was Dat Nguyen, and he fell to Paul Feltman Jr. in the second round of the elimination bracket. Feltman would then lose to Sosa in the third round 40-32, second Sosa to the finals. His finals opponent, John Park, eliminated Jim Hendrickson by an identical 40-32 scoreline in the other third round match. 

Sosa was victorious in the final 32 round match, with a score of 40-27. While Sosa did turn in an impressive run of four, it was his steady play the entire match that was the difference, as he had an average of 1.250 for the match. 

Sosa pocketed another $3,400 for the event win, while Park took home $2,400 for second place. 

Tournament organizer Mazin Shooni expressed his thanks to everyone who helped make the event a success. He thanked Casino Del Sol for being supportive and allowing him to hold events, as well as his sponsors Gabriels, Dynaspheres, McDermott, Royal Pro Cloth, Simonis Cloth and Million Dollar Products. Shooni also thanked Ben Sutherland with BBTV for the great job streaming matches all week, and “Professor Q-Ball” Paul Frankel for all of his help behind the scenes and for “Always helping even when he isn’t there”. 

Shooni is scheduled to bring 3-cushion back to Casino Del Sol on June 20th – 26th for the 3 Cushion Summer Shootout.


Winners photos courtesy of Paul Frankel –

A’Mazin Billiards

Malden Massachusetts is home to what professionals are calling the most exclusive Billiard Club in the country – A'Mazin Billiards.

A'Mazin Billiards is a members-only billiard club tailored for the professional player and features elite equipment such as Breton 2001 carom tables, Breton pool tables, Brunswick Gold Crown pool tables and Tiger Cues.

It started with a dream shared by a local entrepreneur and a legendary billiard player – to take the sport of carom and pool in the United States out of the bar and into a space reserved for the professional player.  To Kevin VanStry and Mazin Shooni, A'Mazin Billiards is all about the sport.

“The professional pool and billiard player in the United States needed a place to play where the equipment was top-notch and distractions were kept to a minimum,” commented Mazin Shooni. “So we gave them the best – the Bretons, the Gold Crowns – and we keep them in perfect playing condition.”

The atmosphere and equipment has not only attracted local league play, but some of the top contenders in the country.  Members get free lessons from Mazin Shooni, known as the Amazing Mazin for his awe-inspiring performance at the 3-cushion tables, including 95 tournament wins. Three-cushion champions such as Mazin, Sonny Cho, Hugo Patino, Miguel Torres and renowned Carom Café Owner Michael Kang have battled it out on the Bretons. Famous artistic legends Mike Massey and Tom Rossman (Dr. Cue) have entertained members with exhibitions.

A'Mazin Billiards is a full-service club. Breton pool and billiard tables are available for sale from the club, which also features mechanics to install the equipment. Tiger cues and equipment, and pool/billiard accessories are also sold.  A’Mazin Billiards mechanics also offer cue repair.

The Best in The World Meet in New York

The USBA has partnered with Kozoom to broadcast matches live at the Verhoeven Open Tournament to be held at Carom Café in Flushing, New York from July 16 to 20.

Kozoom is the leading live streaming presence on the Internet for billiards. In addition to broadcasting the World Cup tournaments and the World Championship. Kozoom also live streams various European tournaments throughout the year. Its Website ( is the premier Carom site on the web with an extensive library of videos, a latest news section, a store, a chat room and an instructional feature.

According to USBA President Andrew Janquitto, helping Kozoom come to the United States to feature the summer International tournament at Carom Café was a "win-win." The summer tournament at Carom Café, Janquitto explained, is the premier billiard event in America, surpassing in many minds even the USBA National Championship. "The Carom Café tournament brings the best players from around the world," Janquitto said, and "gives US players the chance to play against world ranked opponents. Having Kozoom there to broadcast the event helps promote billiards in the United States and gives Kozoom the opportunity to introduce its product to the American market."

The Verhoeven Open will feature the likes of Torbjörn Blomdahl and Frederic Caudron, currently ranked 1st and 2nd in the world, respectively. They will be joined by Eddie Merckx (No. 5), Roland Forthomme (No. 20) and Eddie Leppens (No. 21) as well as many other players from Europe and America. Returning for the United States will be six time and current US National Champion Pedro Piedrabuena who triumphed against Torbjörn Blomdahl in this same event in 2012. Expect to see some well-fought battles as the top US players including former champions Mazin Shooni and Hugo Patino vie to make their mark on this International group.

Immediately before the Verhoeven Open, a women's tournament will be held featuring, among others, current world champ Natsumi Higashiuchi, former world champ Orie Hida, Therese Klompenhouwer (whom many consider the best player), and always dangerous Karina Jetten. Some of these players may also play in the men's open tournament as well.

For more information about the Verhoeven Open Tournament and many other three cushion events here in the US, check out the USBA Tournament Calendar.