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Predator Germany Open Reaches Single Elimination

Petri Makkonen

The Predator Germany Open has reached the single elimination stage after players battled through the last double elimination rounds of the Pro Billiard Series event on Thursday.

Austria’s Jasmin Ouschan had to win through three rounds and will now face two-time Pro Billiard Series champion Kelly Fisher in the quarter-finals of the Women’s Division.

The Open division moves to single elimination for the last 32 and Germany’s World Junior Champion Moritz Neuhausen won 4-3, 4-1 against Hong Kong’s Ip Tung Pong to make it five players from the home country to reach the second stage. Ralf Souquet had won through the winners’ side of the bracket and will now face Mahmut Sami Koylu of Turkey. Can Salim also came from the winners’ side and will face German countryman Tobias Bongers, who scored a win against Vincent Gomez to reach the single elimination phase. Yuma Dorner is the fifth German into the last 32 and will play Mateusz Sniegocki.

Both divisions of the Predator Germany Open have added money of €45,400 and both champions will earn €20,000, along with a spot at the 2023 World 10-Ball Championship for the Open winner and a spot in the 2022 World Women’s 10-Ball Championship for the Women’s Division winner.

In the Women’s Division, Ouschan won a shootout against Kim Witzel and then defeated Angeline Magdalena Ticoalu to meet Amalia Matas for a place in the quarter-finals. Matas already has a Women’s EuroTour title this year but her run in Germany was ended with a straight-sets defeat to Ouschan. Germany’s Veronika Ivanovskaia is drawn against Bojana Sarac.

Among the players to reach the final 32 of the Open division is Finland’s Petri Makkonen, a winner on the EuroTour in 2015. He had been defeated on the first day of play by Saudi Arabia’s Khalid Alghamdi and the Finn then had to battle through three rounds on the losers’ side, which culminated in a shootout against Alex Montpellier of France.

Makkonen won the first set 4-2 but France’s Montpellier, who came to the losers’ qualification round after a shootout defeat against Pijus Labutis, took advantage of Makkonen’s struggles in the second set to win 4-1. That was the end of the tournament for Montpellier, as Makkonen regrouped and didn’t miss in the shootout while his French opponent missed on each of his last two innings.

Play resumes at 9am local time in Bremen, Germany, and Friday’s play on the TV table will commence with Nick van den Berg facing Mickey Krause.

Follow @probilliardseries on Facebook, @probilliardseries on Instagram or @PBilliardSeries on Twitter to follow the next events.

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UK Open Day 2 | Big Hitters Progress With Relative Ease

Dennis Orcollo (Taka G Wu/Matchroom Multi Sport)

Day 2 of the UK Open Pool Championship at the Copper Box Arena, London live on the Matchroom Pool Facebook and YouTube pages as well as Matchroom.Live brought plenty of success for the top seeds as only Ko Pin Yi, Naoyuki Oi, and Eklent Kaci came unstuck in Winners’ Round 1.

Live Scores 

Bracket

The action began live on the Matchroom Pool Facebook with the two young guns of Lo Ho Sum and Mickey Krause head to head with Ho Sum looking to build on his runner-up finish at the World Pool Masters just a few weeks ago. Krause is far from a pushover though and the Dane showed his credibility and rise through the ranks to dispatch the Hong Kong, China player to Losers Round 2 in a 9-5 win.

Dennis Orcollo went up to Solihull, Birmingham between the World Pool Masters and the UK Open to keep in stroke playing in a local tournament which he won on Sunday evening and that decision seems to have paid off so far as he came good in a 9-4 win against Chris Seville of Great Britain.

One of the upsets of the day came on one of the back tables as 2015 World Champion Ko Pin Yi was on the end of a 9-4 loss to Luke Garland. Garland was only a few frames away from a World Snooker Tour card a few years back before defeat to UK Championship winner Zhao Xintong at the final hurdle and it showed his pedigree to run seven racks on the way to an 8-0 lead over Pin Yi. Pin Yi did come back but it proved too much of a hill to climb putting him into the next stage in the Losers bracket.

Oi is still in search of his first Matchroom title and his work will be cut out if he is to get rid of that hoodoo this week. The Japanese star fell at the hands of Pole Mariusz Skoneczny in the opening match of the day live on the Matchroom Pool Youtube. Kaci also missed out to Skoneczny’s compatriot Daniel Maciol 9-6. Maciol will face Pijus Labutis in the next round on the winners’ side whilst Kaci faces Rich Jones on the other side of the bracket to keep his hopes alive.

The USA’s Chris Reinhold survived an inspired fightback from Pia Filler to set up a clash with Pia’s husband Joshua in the next phase. Reinhold had amassed an initial advantage, but Filler came back into the contest most notably with a brutal hook early on in the 14th rack. Filler ran it close to get one away from Reinhold at 8-7 but it was the two-time Mosconi Cup player who pulled through to meet Joshua next.

It was the end of the road for Martin Gould on day two as the former World Snooker ranking event winner faced two defeats. Firstly, to Great Britain’s rising star Elliott Sanderson despite hitting the front first and looking in control before being dumped out of the competition in the evening to the vastly experienced Daniele Corrieri who will represent Italy at the World Cup of Pool next month from June 14-19 at the Brentwood Centre in Essex, England.

The journey for Gary Wilson continued though as the former Crucible semi-finalist bounced back from defeat to Chris Alexander to beat Gianluca Cappella and set up a tie with Romania’s Babken Melkonyan tomorrow.

Top seeds Shane Van Boening, Albin Ouschan, David Alcaide, Max Lechner, and Jayson Shaw amongst others all sailed through their respective contests to keep their run on the Winners’ Side continue. Alcaide yet to drop a rack this week whilst Van Boening has only dropped two so far.

There’s plenty of action for fans to get their teeth into tomorrow as Losers Round 3, 4 and 5 all take place as well as Winners Round 2, and 3. Over 100 players will be out of the tournament by the close of play tomorrow.

Day 2 Streamed Matches Below From 11:00 am

Table 1 – Matchroom Pool Facebook / Matchroom.Live

Dennis Orcollo vs Jonas Souto Comino (W3)
Ko Ping Chung vs Benji Buckley (W3)
Robbie Capito vs Riku Romppanen vs (W3)

TBC Match (Winner Round 4)
TBC Match (Winner Round 4)
TBC Match (Winner Round 4)

Table 2 – Matchroom Pool YouTube / Matchroom.Live

Alex Kazakis vs Chris Melling (W3)
Dimitri Jungo vs Wojciech Szewczyk (W3)
John Morra vs Billy Thorpe (W3)

The final two days are available on Sky Sports in the UK and Ireland, DAZN in the USA, Canada, Germany, Austria, Spain, Italy, and Switzerland as well as on Viaplay in Scandinavia and the Baltics and various other broadcasters worldwide including Matchroom.Live in relevant countries. See the full where to watch list here.

Tickets start from £15 for the day using the code UKOPEN at checkout. Secure yours here

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UK Open Day 1 | Sanchez Ruiz Avoids Early Exit From 6-0 Down

Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz (Taka G Wu/Matchroom Multi Sport)

Francisco Sanchez Ruiz avoided an early exit coming from 6-0 down on the opening day of the inaugural UK Open Pool Championship at the Copper Box Arena, London live on the Matchroom Pool Facebook and YouTube pages as well as Matchroom.Live worldwide.

Live Scores 

Bracket

256 players descended on one of London’s most iconic sporting venues for a piece of history as they gun to become the first player to claim the UK Open title and a share of the $200,000 prize fund as the opening round and Losers Round 1 saw the first 16 players leave the tournament and leave many in a perilous position with the remaining losers round matches set to get underway tomorrow morning ahead of Winners Round 1.

Fans were treated to two live streams for free wherever they are in the world thanks to the Matchroom Pool Facebook and YouTube pages as well as on Matchroom.Live and on betting websites around the world and they were not disappointed.

Sanchez Ruiz lost his opening match of the tournament against South Africa’s Jason Theron from 6-3 up to face Ashik Nathawani in one of the opening Losers Round encounters to keep his spot in the tournament. The Spaniard has had a good year of it so far and is one of the Mosconi Cup Team Europe hopefuls, but it was nearly curtains as Nathwani took hold with a 6-0 lead and only three from victory, but Sanchez Ruiz rallied from that point onwards to put on the performance of the opening day in a dramatic hill-hill victory.

Fresh off the back of claiming the title at Nineball Ranking Event, the Bucharest Open on Sunday, Ko Pin Yi made light work of Chun Hao Man 9-2 to kick off Table 1 action before one of the home favourites in Chris Melling put on a fine display to hand a donut to Petr Urban in a cruising 9-0 victory inside 40 minutes. The speediness of Melling’s showing wasn’t the last performance of such nature as both recent World Pool Masters winner Joshua Filler and two-time World Champion Albin Ouschan rattled off emphatic wins of the same scoreline against Robert Hart and Sergio Lagunas, respectively.

With over 38% of the field British, there was plenty of support for the home nations as World Snooker Ranking Event winner Martin Gould got off to a winning start in his first appearance in a Nineball tournament since the early 2000s to beat Tashunka Schultz to set up an all Brit affair with Elliott Sanderson in the Winners Round 1 tomorrow whilst fellow World Snooker Tour player Gary Wilson, a former Crucible semi-finalist showed off his first forway into another cue sport discipline in a 9-6 win over America’s Blaine Barcus. Another notable name from the world of snooker in Fraser Patrick overcome fellow Scot David Black.

Wilson said: “It was getting a bit twitchy. It was too close for my liking. I was 4-1 up. It was a scrappy game. I am trying to get used to the conditions and work out what’s going on. I tried my best to keep potting balls and getting onto the next one. The tables are so different, it is skiddier and more reactive. It took us a few racks to work it out. I am learning as a go and hopefully, I can improve”

Two-time Mosconi Cup MVP Jayson Shaw comfortably pulled through against Ali Hirji Kheraj whilst newly crowned World Champion Shane Van Boening didn’t seem to break swear in another 9-0 win on Table 1 over James Channon.

Action continues tomorrow morning from 9am in the arena before streaming coverage begins from 10am on Table 1 and 2. See below the schedule of matches.

Day 2 Streamed Matches Below 10:00 am to 07:00 pm

Table 1 – Matchroom Pool Facebook / Matchroom.Live

Lo Ho Sum vs Mickey Krause

Dennis Orcollo vs Chris Seville

Elliott Sanderson vs Martin Gould

Chris Reinhold vs Pia Filler

Eklent Kaçi vs Daniel Maciol

Jayson Shaw vs Stephen Folan

Table 2 – Matchroom Pool YouTube / Matchroom.Live

Naoyuiki Oi vs Moriusz Skoneczny

Imran Majid vs Jeff Beckley

Oliver Szolnoki vs Fraser Patrick

Gary Wilson vs Chris Alexander

Mika Immonen vs Adam Smith

Shane Van Boening vs Matthew Rigley

The final two days are available on Sky Sports in the UK and Ireland, DAZN in the USA, Canada, Germany, Austria, Spain, Italy, and Switzerland as well as on Viaplay in Scandinavia and the Baltics and various other broadcasters worldwide including Matchroom.Live in relevant countries. See the full where to watch list here.

Tickets start from £15 for the day and £85 for the week using the code UKOPEN at checkout. Secure yours here

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Team Golds For Finland And Germany

Janni Siekkinen, Casper Matikainen, Jani Uski and Petri Makkonen

In the penultimate day at the Dynamic Billard European Pool Championships in Lasko, Slovenia, it was an evening of drama and excitement as the destination of the medals in the men’s and women’s team events was determined. And it was Finland in the men’s and Germany in the ladies’ who took the gold medals in a pair of thrilling finals.

In the men’s event, there were three matches playing simultaneously with the first team to achieve two wins carrying off the gold medals and the trophy. The featured match was on the TV table and involved Casper Matikainen (Finland) facing off against Daniel Maciol of Poland in 9-Ball.

The willowy Finn was always ahead of the game with some quality shot-making while his opponent never quite got to grips with the match. Matikainen had led 3-1 and 4-2, while the other two tables saw it at 3-3 in the 10-ball match between Petri Makkonen and Sebastian Batkowski, with the 8-ball encounter between Jani Uski and Wojciech Szewczyk also tied up at 3-3.

Always staying ahead of his opponent, Matikainen maintained his two-rack margin before leaping into a 6-3 lead. The Finn enjoyed some beneficial fortune as that became 7-3 and victory was in his grasp. At that same juncture, the other two games were in Poland’s favour as they led 6-4 in the 10-Ball encounter and 4-3 in the 8-Ball.

A fruitless break from Maciol gave the table back to Matikainen and with the balls spread nicely, he cleared up to reach the hill with a five-game cushion. Maciol relaxed a little as he won the next for 8-4 but in what was the final rack, Matikainen made an excellent bank on the 2 ball, leaving a difficult 3/9 combo but with a comfortable lead, he took it on and made it, giving the first of the three available points to Finland.

The focus now shifted to tables two and three as Petri Makkonen moved to the hill in the 10-ball match, having overcome a two-rack deficit to leave Finland within a rack of the gold medals. Makkonen, with the break, delivered an enormous shot to down three balls. Sucking down deep breaths to keep himself calm, Makkonen rattled the jaws with the 1 ball to give the table back to Batkowski as the 8-ball match moved to five racks each.

Makkonen though got back to the table and had a terrific opportunity to bring home the gold. The balls were all there for the Finn as he pocketed the orange 5 into the centre pocket. The 6 was down the rail and the 8, 9 and 10 all out in the open. The seasoned Finn composed himself and took them down as his two jubilant team mates ran into the arena to celebrate their first ever team gold medal.

Commented Matikainen, “It feels great! I have a really nice team with me and we all trust each other. We didn’t really think it was going to be this time but this feels really good. It was a good match for me in the final but throughout the tournament I think everybody played good.”

For Petri Makkonen it was a nerve-racking affair but potting the championship 10 ball was a supreme moment; “I was one rack down all the way until I was 6-4 down but I dug deep. I had a few hiccups but I overcame them. I saw Casper was winning and Uski was playing good so it was easy to play and I relaxed a little bit when I saw we were one up and Uski was 6-5 up.

“I played good, we played good and here’s the result. Watching your team mates winning and at the table really gives you energy and it’s much easier to overcome things in your own match. Relieved is the word and we got the result we wanted,” he added.

Final

Finland 2 – 0 Poland
Casper Matikainen 9 – 4 Daniel Maciol (9 Ball)
Petri Makkonen 8 – 7 Sebastian Batkowski (10 Ball)
Jani Uski v Wojciech Szewczyk (8 Ball) Did not complete

Semi Finals

Finland 2 – 0 Poland
Jani Uski 8 – 5 Diego Pedro Simon (8 Ball)
Casper Matikainen 9 – 7 Jonas Souto (9 Ball)
Petri Makkonen 8 – 1 Francisco Diaz Pizarro (10 Ball)

Poland 2 – 1 Denmark
Wojciech Szewczyk 8 – 5 Jeppe Thyde (8 Ball)
Daniel Maciol 9 – 3 Mickey Krause (9 Ball)
Sebastian Batkowski 5 – 8 Andreas Madsen (10 Ball)

Veronika Ivanovskaia, Melanie Subenguth, Tina Vogelmann and Pia Filler and German National Coach Tom Damm

In the women’s event it was Germany who prevailed with the winning duo of Pia Filler and Tina Vogelmann who defeated the Norwegian pairing of Line Kjorsvik and Nina Torvund via a deciding shootout after the two teams couldn’t be separated in regulation play. The format of the Dynamic Billards Women’s Team event saw two matches in 8 ball and 9 ball, with a shootout in operation should the two teams be tied at one match apiece.

After defeating Switzerland 2-0 in their semi-final, the German pair had a tougher proposition against Norway. The first match to finish was Pia Filler’s 7-1 9-ball win over Torvund, leaving the medal destination resting on the other game of 8 ball. With a big lead though, Kjorsvik closed out a 6-2 victory over Vogelmann to leave a shoot-out decider, where the black ball rests on the spot, with and the cue ball positioned at the centre of the head-string.

It took 16 shots to separate the pair as Norway missed with the score at 7-7 and the Germans converted to give themselves team gold, breaking a run of two consecutive silver medals. As well as Vogelmann and Filler, who collected her second gold of the Championships, medals also went to team members Veronika Ivanovskaia and Melanie Suβenguth who had won the team’s winners’ qualification match, also against Norway.

Commented Vogelmann, “It’s amazing, I can’t believe it at this moment. I was sure we were well-prepared; we’re a good team and we have so many good players in Germany at the moment, many more than the four playing in this tournament. You have pressure because you know you want to win it and you can win it but I think we are a shoot-out monster team!”

Suβenguth added, “I’m very proud of the team and of course the final was very exciting to watch and I’m very happy we got the win.”

For Ivanovskaia who had played her part in the earlier rounds, it wasn’t an easy experience; “It was very nervy watching. There’s a lot of support between each other and a lot of belief in ourselves and they both played very good in the final.”

Finally, for Pia Filler, who is still alive in the 9-ball event which concludes on Saturday, it was another great day at the ECs; “It was my first time playing in the team event and I’m very proud of us, I think we did a really good job. I know the job for today was done very well but there’s another gold medal to be won and of course I’ll be trying my very best to win that too.”

Final

Germany 2 – 1 Norway
Pia Filler 7 – 1 Nina Torvund (9 Ball)
Tina Vogelmann 2 – 6 Line Kjorsvik (8 Ball)
Germany 8 – 7 Norway (Shoot Out)

Semi Finals

Germany 2 – 0 Switzerland
Tina Vogelmann 6 – 2 Claudia Von Rohr (8 Ball)
Pia Filler 7 – 2 Christine Feldmann (9 Ball)

Norway 2 – 0 Poland
Line Kjorsvik 6 – 1 Oliwia Zalewska (8 Ball)
Nina Torvund 7 – 3 Izabela Lacka (9 Ball)

The 2022 Dynamic Billards European Championship sees 15 separate events
across four disciplines – 8, 9 and 10 ball as well as straight pool –
plus the men’s and women’s team competitions. In total there are four
divisions; men, women, under 23 men and wheelchair users.

All matches can be viewed live at www.kozoom.com

Results, live scoring and draw are available at
www.epbf.com/tournaments/european-championships/

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Gerson Martinez & Mary Rakin Tam Crowned Texas Open 10 Ball Champs

Gerson Martinez (Pool Action TV)

Skinny Bob’s Billiards & Sports Bar in Round Rock, TX was the venue for the 7th Annual Texas Open 10 Ball Championships. 

Produced by Cue & A Promotions, this event featured three divisions – the $2,000 added Scotch Doubles, the $2,000 added Ladies 10 Ball and the 10,000 added 10 Ball Open. A total of $15,750 was added to the prize fund.

Local sponsors included Mints Amusements, Hanshew Jump Cues, Austin Pro Siding, Windows & Roofing, GAF, DigitalPool.com and ABC Supply Co., Inc.

The tournament began on Wednesday night with a $500 added 10 Ball mini tournament. This $25 entry single elimination race to three event had a full field of 64 players. Hailing from Sarajevo, Bosnia, Sanjin Pehlivanovic took the cheese. Defending US Open Pool champ Carlo Biado took second while Lima, Peru’s Gerson Martinez and Roland Garcia each tied for third place.

Following a players meeting and auction, play commenced on Thursday afternoon in the Jack & Jill Scotch Doubles 10 Ball Championship. Twenty three teams posted $125 entry fees to play in this double elimination, race to seven event. 

Continuing his hot streak, Carlo Biado and his partner, Mary Rakin Tam took first place over Alex Pagulayan and April Larson.

Thursday evening also featured the $500 added Banks Ring Game. At the end, Denmark’s Mickey Krause, John Morra and Manny Chau did a three-way chop of the cash.

Carlo Biado and Mary Rakin Tam (Pool Action TV)

Friday began with both a $500 added Open Ring Game and a $250 added Ladies Ring Game. John Morra won the Open Ring Game and the Ladies was won by Jenna Bishoff.

Later that evening, a players meeting and auction kicked off the main event. 125 players paid their $150 entry fees into this double elimination, race to seven with alternate break format. Play began the following day.

Meeting in the first round, Roland Garcia edged out Josh Roberts 7-6 and Alex Pagulayan defeated Evan Lunda 7-3.

Second round action saw Lee Vann Corteza spank John Gabriel 7-2 as Gerson Martinez squeaked by Sergio Rivas 7-6. Robbie Capito eked out a 7-6 win over recent Music City Open champ Shane Wolford, Singapore’s Sarik Sayed trounced local favorite Justin Espinosa 7-2 while Pagulayan toughed out his match with Pehlivanovic 7-5. 

In the third round, straight shooting veteran Tommy Sanders shot down Blaine Barcus 7-3 as did Biado over Krause with an identical score. Gerson Martinez sent Lee Vann west 7-4 while Sean Black upset the legendary David Matlock 7-5.  John Morra blistered Shane McMinn 7-2 while Manny Chau sent Michael Yednak packing 7-3. Fellow Houstonians Roberto Gomez and Tommy Tokoph duked it out with Tommy emerging the victor 7-3 and Sayed lost to Pagulayan 7-4.

Matches in the fourth round saw Sanders bow to Krause 7-4 and Chris Reinhold lose to Gerson Martinez by the same score. Morra toasted Sean Black as did Chip Compton versus Nicholas De Leon – both matches were 7-3. Sending another Houstonian to the one loss side, Tokoph bested Chau 7-5 – Capito went down to Pagulayan 7-4.

Round five had Gerson Martinez mowing down Krause 7-4 and Tokoph easing past Christopher Teves 7-3. With identical 7-1 scores, Pagulayan bested Souto as did Tokoph over Christopher Tevez.

Now down to four players on the winners side, Gerson Martinez defeated Morra 7-5 while Pagulayan beat Tokoph 7-3. Both Alex and Gerson moved into the hot seat match as their opponents headed west.

Saturday evening saw the players meeting and auction for the Ladies 10 Ball event. A full field of 32 players posted a $100 entry – same format as the Open 10 Ball.

Notable first round matches included perennial favorite Ming Ng’s victory over Kelly Durbin 7-5 with both Kim Sanders edging out Mary Avina and Margaret Fox over Tam Trinh 7-6. 

Second round action saw Jenna Bishoff eke out a win over Jennifer Kraber 7-6 as Mary Rakin Tam defeated Ng by the same score. Sanders defeated Emily Sumrall 7-3 and Melissa Rushton took care of Fox 7-4.

After skunking her two previous opponents, April Larson had a bit of a tougher time with Kim Pierce – April won 7-3. Tam sent Bishoff packing 7-5, Chris Fields pummeled Rachel Hurst 7-1 and Rushton notched another win over Sanders 7-5.

Down to four on the winners side, Tam sneaked past Larson 7-5 and Fields beat Rushton 7-4. Both Tam and Fields advanced to the hot seat match. Mary handily beat Chris 7-2 and claimed her seat in the finals. Chris headed west to await an opponent.

On the one loss side, Bishoff defeated Rushton 7-4 while Larson eliminated Trinh 7-5. Larson won her match with Bishoff 7-4 leaving Jenna in fourth place. April then defeated Chris 7-2 to move into the finals. Chris finished with a third place finish.

Since this was true double elimination, April would have to defeat Mary twice to claim the title. However, it was not to be as April was relegated to a well-deserved second place finish and Mary went undefeated to claim her first Texas Open 10 Ball title!!! 

Meanwhile, the Open 10 Ball was winding down to its last few players! In the hot seat match, Gerson Martinez mowed down his last opponent to lock up his berth in the finals. Pagulayan lost 7-4 and headed to the other side of the chart to await an opponent.

Lee Vann Corteza ended Tommy Tokoph’s hopes for the title 7-3 as John Morra did the same to Jonas Souto 7-3. Lee Vann and John locked horns and battled it out to a 7-6 result. Leaving Lee Vann in fourth place, Morra’s next opponent was fellow Canadian, Alex Pagulayan. Also a tough one, John emerged to take on Gerson for the title. Alex finished in third place.

Again, as this was true double elimination, Morra would have to defeat Martinez twice to win the title. The match started out close until John pulled away to close out the first set 7-4. The final set was also close but this time, Gerson pulled away to put him one game away from the title – 6-4. John clawed back to win another game but that was it. Gerson won the final game & the title leaving John with a well deserved runner-up finish!  

Congratulations to both Gerson Martinez and Mary Rakin Tam – this year’s Texas Open 10 Ball champions!!!

PoolActionTV.com would like to thank owners Kim and Tracy Sanders as well as their General Manager, Shayla Neris, and their staff for rolling out the red carpet for all of the players and fans.

Thank you to Tournament Director Jason Hill for doing an exemplary job juggling all the various events.  

We’d like to thank Blake Kamiab, Clint Palaci and David (“Doc”) Reyes for running the DFW Tour setup broadcasting the ladies event on our free channel. 

We’d also like to thank Larry Schwartz, Michael Yednak, Alex Pagulayan, Mary Kenniston and Ray Hansen for their expert commentary.

And, last but not least, we’d like to thank our sponsors and fans. Our sponsors include JB Cases, Hanshew Jump Cues, StraightPoolEye, Lomax Custom Cues, Diamond Billiard Products, Aramith, Simonis, Durbin Custom Cues, the Action Palace of Dayton, OH and the Fort Worth Billiards Superstore of Fort Worth, TX. 

Our next event is the 5th Annual Scotty Townsend Memorial in West Monroe, LA featuring three divisions – Pro One Pocket, Open 9 Ball and Women’s 9 Ball. The dates are March 1st-6th. Hope to see you there!!!

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Apex Wisconsin Open Down to Final 16

The 21-year-old Russian Fedor Gorst is certainly not a stranger to the U.S. Pro Billiard Series’ format, having won back-to-back Arcadia Arizona Opens.

Friday evening, Gorst saw plenty of the dramatic twists and turns that can occur in the short-race, shootout-deciding matches as he jumped out to big advantages in the first set only to lose the second and have to survive a shootout to advance.  It wasn’t easy, but he punched his ticket for the final day of play of this weekend’s Apex Wisconsin Open, defeating American Chris Reinhold and Canadian John Morra to advance at Ho-Chunk Resort and Casino to advance.

After a straight sets victory against Mason Koch to begin his day, Gorst was able to take advantage of two scratches and a missed shot by Reinhold to cruise to a 4-1 opening set victory. The script completely flipped in the following set, with Reinhold breaking and running the opening rack and winning the next game when Gorst missed a 2 ball in the side pocket. The Russian appeared to be positioned to climb onto the scoreboard after a Reinhold error but missed a 3 ball in the corner pocket in one trip to the table and scratched in the side pocket in the next, handing his opponent a 3-0 lead.

Gorst clawed out two victories thanks to a Reinhold scratch and a safety exchange in the fifth rack. He had a chance to tie the match in the next game but missed a combination shot on the 10 ball. He had another opportunity after Reinhold scratched during a safety battle but missed the 8 ball, allowing the American to close out the set, 4-2, and force a shootout. The two competitors were perfect through the first four innings of the spot shot contest, but when the format moved the cue ball back a diamond and switched to sudden death, Gorst pocketed his first shot while Reinhold missed.

A couple of hours later, Gorst was facing Morra for a chance to reach Saturday’s single-elimination phase. The first set was nearly a carbon copy of his opening round against Reinhold, with the Russian using two break and runs, a victorious safety exchange and a Morra miss to pitch a 4-0 shutout. After he used a risky bank shot on the 1 ball to run out the opening rack of the second set, it appeared Gorst could be making quick work of his Canadian counterpart. That was until Morra used a safety battle along with a break-and-run to take a 2-1 lead.
Gorst took advantage of a scratch on the break by his opponent to tie the score then used a successful table-length jump shot on the 1 ball to run the rack and take a 3-2 lead. As he cleared the balls in the sixth game, Gorst appeared to be closing out the set but drew the cue ball halfway down the table and into the corner pocket while trying to secure position on the 5 ball. Morra made him pay for the mistake, clearing the rack to tie the score and then using a carom shot on the 10 ball to steal the game, win the set, 4-3, and force a shootout.
Although he struggled with ball pocketing in the second set, Gorst was robotic in the spot shot contest, pocketing four straight balls while his opponent missed twice.

The Russian began the tournament with an opening round victory against Eklent Kaci, who also advanced to the final 16 with three consecutive straight sets victories over Justin Martin, Thorsten Hohmann and Kuwait’s Omar Al Shaheen.

Kaci was virtually perfect in his opening set against Al Shaheen, breaking and running three consecutive times and surviving a short safety exchange to pitch a 4-0 shutout. The Kuwaiti, who was a runner-up in last year’s World Pool Championships, used a break-and-run and a misplayed safety on the 8 ball by Kaci to win the first two matches of the second set. Kaci’s opportunity to mount a comeback arrived in the third rack when his opponent failed to pocket a ball on the break, as the Albanian cleared the table and then won the next two racks to take a 3-2 lead. Al Shaheen had an opportunity to tie the set but wasn’t able to secure position on the 9 ball, then misplayed a safety on the ball which allowed his opponent to close out the rack for a 4-2 win.

Meanwhile, Billiard Congress of America Hall of Famer Darren Appleton continues to play more and more like the competitor who won the World 9-Ball championship a decade earlier, defeating former U.S. Open 9-Ball champion Mika Immonen in straight sets, 4-1, 4-2. Immonen, who has been appearing at the top of leaderboards more frequently himself in recent months, rallied on the one-loss side by defeating Evan Lunda in straight sets to earn a spot of his own in Saturday’s final day of competition.

Qualifying for the single-elimination phase from the winner’s side are Appleton, Dimitris Loukatos, Filipino Lee Van Corteza, Michigan Open champion Aloysius Yapp, Robbie Capito, South Dakotan Danny Olson, Jesus Atencio and World Pool Masters champion Alex Kazakis. The remaining eight players on the one-loss side include Kaci, Gorst, Immonen, Denis Grabe, Roland Garcia, Jeremy Seaman, Mickey Krause of Demark and Kuwait’s Bader Alawadhi.

The seeding will be re-drawn and competition will begin Saturday morning.

The Apex Wisconsin Open is the second event of the year for the Predator U.S. Pro Billiard Series and the first ever to be staged at Ho-Chunk Resort, a sprawling facility north of Madison which offers a 302-room hotel as well as spacious gaming and convention space.
Follow the Apex Wisconsin Open draw on the Predator US Pro Billiard Series FargoRate’s dedicated page

The Apex Wisconsin Open is streamed for free all week on Billiard TV and the World Billiard TV YouTube channel.
Go to Billiard TV to watch 24/7 Billiard Videos on any device

Follow @probilliardseries on Facebook, @probilliardseries on Instagram or @PBilliardSeries on Twitter to follow the event.

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Ouschan Ousted on Second Day of Apex Wisconsin Open

Jasmin Ouschan

It’s been a while since World Champion Jasmin Ouschan has competed in the United States.

Having fewer professional women’s events domestically than what were available years ago doesn’t lend itself to traveling to America frequently. Mix in a pandemic and a newly developed second career as a dancing television celebrity in her native Austria and it doesn’t help matters. Total it all up and the last time Ouschan played in the U.S. prior to this week’s Apex Wisconsin Open was the 2019 Women’s Professional Billiards Association Masters, where she placed fifth.

After her two matches on Thursday, she might be wishing she had waited even longer to return. The multiple-time European champion started her day undefeated after a straight set victory over Zach Bos in the opening round. By the end of the evening, she was reduced to a spectator, having suffered back-to-back grueling losses to Denis Grabe of Estonia and Joven Bustamante at the Ho-Chunk Resort and Casino in the Wisconsin Dells.

The Austrian got off to a hot start against Grabe in the opening match, jumping out to a quick lead after pocketing the 10 ball on the break in the first rack of the set. Things quickly unraveled, with Ouschan failing to pocket a ball on the break in the next rack and Grabe taking advantage by winning the next two games. The Austrian had another opportunity as she worked her way through the fourth rack after Grabe broke dry but she missed a routine shot on the game-winning 10 ball. The young man from Estonia then finished off the set, 4-1, after Ouschan scratched while kicking at the 3 ball in the fifth rack.

Grabe used a pocketed 10 ball on the break of his own and victorious safety exchange to build an early 2-0 advantage of the second set, but Ouschan climbed onto the scoreboard when her opponent committed a foul in the third rack. After tying the score 2-2, she used a carom shot involving the 5 and 10 balls to take the lead then used a missed 3 ball by Grabe in the next game to close out the set, 4-2.

After both competitors pocketed their first four shots in the overtime shootout, the cue ball was moved back a diamond and the format switched to sudden death. Grabe made the first shot while Ouschan missed, handing the Estonian the win and moving over to the one-loss side.

Later in the day, Ouschan squared off against Filipino Joven Bustamante, where the two split the first six racks of the first set. Bustamante broke in the set-deciding seventh rack, then played safe and appeared to be in position to run out the rack after a brief exchange – until he missed the 5 ball in the side pocket. Ouschan jumped the 6 ball to pocket the 5, then ran the remaining balls to survive the set, 4-3.
The Filipino jumped out to an early 2-0 advantage in the next set thanks to a combination shot after a dry break from Ouschan in the opening rack and a break-and-run in the following game. The Austrian cut the deficit to 2-1 after a victorious safety exchange in the third rack led to a combination shot on the 10-ball but Bustamante climbed onto the hill in the next rack when Ouschan again failed to pocket a ball on the break. Ouschan used victorious safety exchanges to gut out the next two games and tie the set and appeared to be in position to clinch the set after Bustamante left an opening after another misplayed safety. After pocketing the 8 ball in the corner pocket, she was left with a long straight shot on the 9 ball which Ouschan missed. Bustamante cleared the table to send the match to shootout, which he won 6-5.

In other notable matches, Jeremy Seaman used three pocketed 10 balls on the break to defeat former World 9-Ball champion Thorsten Hohmann in straight sets, 4-1, 4-2 on the winner’s side. South Dakotan Danny Olson took advantage of a handful of unforced errors by opponent Mario He – including a pair of missed 9 balls in the first set – and defeated the reigning Ohio Open champion in straight sets, 4-2, 4-2. Arcadia Arizona Open runner-up Roland Garcia earned a first set 4-1 victory against Robbie Capito, then watched as his opponent stormed back to claim the final set, 4-1, then won in a shootout, 3-2 to remain undefeated. Capito will now face Canadian John Morra, who needed a shootout victory of his own to squeak by American Michael Yednak.

Friday’s action begins at 11 a.m. eastern time with notable matches including Billiard Congress of America Hall of Famer Darren Appleton facing fellow Hall of Famer Mika Immonen in a winner’s side match and Chris Reinhold taking on Roberto Gomez Jr. on the one-loss side. Competitors will be jockeying for one of the 16 berths available in Saturday’s single-elimination phase of the event, with the remaining eight players on the winner’s and one-loss qualifying and the seeding being redrawn before play begins.

The Wisconsin Open is the second event of the year for the U.S. Pro Billiard Series and the first ever to be staged at Ho-Chunk Resort, a sprawling facility north of Madison which offers a 302-room hotel as well as spacious gaming and convention space.

Hours later, Gorst would pitch a 4-0 shutout in the first round of his match against Dimitris Loukatos, but lost the second set 4-3 and lost in a shootout to the Greek, 4-3. The Russian moves to the one-loss side of the bracket where he will play Friday morning.

England’s Darren Appleton appears to close to regaining the stroke that landed the former U.S. Open 9-Ball champion in the Billiards Congress of America Hall of Fame. Facing Mickey Krause of Denmark, Appleton played nearly flawless in a straight set second round victory.

After Krause used a break-and-run and a scratch on the break by his opponent to build an early 2-1 lead, Appleton took advantage of a foul by his opponent in the fourth rack to tie set then tacked on back-to-back breaks and runs to close out a 4-2 victory. The Brit, reached the second round with a straight sets victory over Poland’s Konrad Juszczyszyn, was equally crafty in the second set, using two victorious safety exchanges and a break-and-run to build a commanding 3-0 advantage. Krause had a chance to climb onto the scoreboard after his opponent scratched on the break in the fourth game but failed to secure position on the 6 ball and missed a bank shot. Appleton executed a sharp cut on the object ball then finished off the rack to pitch a 4-0 shutout and advance to the third round of the winner’s side of the bracket.
Appleton will face fellow Hall of Famer Mika Immonen in the third round Friday at 11 a.m. eastern time.

In other matches of the day, Roland Garcia took advantage of a handful of errors by three-time Mosconi Cup member Tyler Styer to earn a 4-0, 4-2 victory and Billiard Congress of America Hall of Famer Immonen needed an extra frame to survive a 7-6 shootout against Michael Schneider of Switzerland.

Competition resumes Thursday morning with notable matches including Denis Grabe of Estonia taking on Jasmin Ouschan at 11 a.m. eastern time, Garcia taking on Robbie Capito at 3 p.m. and Mieszko Fortunski of Poland meeting Hunter Lombardo on the one-loss side of the bracket at 6 p.m.

The Apex Wisconsin Open is the second event of the year for the Predator U.S. Pro Billiard Series and the first ever to be staged at Ho-Chunk Resort, a sprawling facility north of Madison which offers a 302-room hotel as well as spacious gaming and convention space.

Follow the Apex Wisconsin Open draw on the Predator US Pro Billiard Series FargoRate’s dedicated page
The Apex Wisconsin Open is streamed for free all week on Billiard TV and the World Billiard TV YouTube channel.
Go to Billiard TV to watch 24/7 Billiard Videos on any device
Follow @probilliardseries on Facebook, @probilliardseries on Instagram or @PBilliardSeries on Twitter to follow the event.

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World Champions Kaci and Gorst Face Off on Opening Day of Apex Wisconsin Open

Eklent Kaci

When spectators attend a concert, they’re usually treated to an opening act or two, hired to get the crowd engaged and set the tone for the night and the event’s main attraction.

Wednesday morning’s starting match at the Apex Wisconsin Open was the equivalent of skipping the warm-up acts completely and heading straight into the hottest new bands, with former World 9-Ball champion Fedor Gorst facing reigning World 10-Ball champion Eklent Kaci in a first-round clash. The two opened play with a nip-and-tuck battle, with Gorst taking advantage of a crucial mistake by his opponent to come from behind and steal a straight-sets victory, 4-2, 4-3, at the Ho-Chunk Resort and Casino in the Wisconsin Dells.

After Kaci won the opening rack, Gorst snagged the next two games after his opponent failed to pocket a ball on the break in the second game but quickly relinquished the table when he didn’t land a ball on the opening shot in the fourth rack. The Albanian tied the score at two games each then opened play in the fifth game by playing a safety on the 1 ball when an open shot wasn’t available. Gorst promptly rattled the ball into the corner pocket with a jump shot and ran out to reclaim the lead. Kaci had another opportunity to tie the set when Gorst again failed to pocket a ball on the break but missed a combination shot on the 2 ball, which the Russian pocketed along with the remaining balls to secure the set, 4-2.

Kaci used a break-and-run in the second set to jump out to an early lead but broke dry in the next rack, allowing his opponent to clear the table and then weave around a clustered 4, 5 and 10 balls in the next game to climb ahead, 2-1. After Gorst failed to land a ball on the break, Kaci again tied the set then gained the lead when his opponent fouled in the fifth game. Standing at the table with a 3-2 lead and a chance to force a shootout, Kaci missed a makeable 6 ball which allowed Gorst to tie the match. After breaking in the set-deciding seventh rack, the Russian executed a sharp cut on the 1 ball, slid in a 5 ball that was closely guarded by the 8 ball and banked in the 9 ball into the side pocket to clear the table and escape with a 4-3 victory.

Watch the entire Gorst-Kaci match on our partner YouTube channel World Billiard TV

Hours later, Gorst would pitch a 4-0 shutout in the first round of his match against Dimitris Loukatos, but lost the second set 4-3 and lost in a shootout to the Greek, 4-3. The Russian moves to the one-loss side of the bracket where he will play Friday morning.

England’s Darren Appleton appears to close to regaining the stroke that landed the former U.S. Open 9-Ball champion in the Billiards Congress of America Hall of Fame. Facing Mickey Krause of Denmark, Appleton played nearly flawless in a straight set second round victory.

After Krause used a break-and-run and a scratch on the break by his opponent to build an early 2-1 lead, Appleton took advantage of a foul by his opponent in the fourth rack to tie set then tacked on back-to-back breaks and runs to close out a 4-2 victory. The Brit, reached the second round with a straight sets victory over Poland’s Konrad Juszczyszyn, was equally crafty in the second set, using two victorious safety exchanges and a break-and-run to build a commanding 3-0 advantage. Krause had a chance to climb onto the scoreboard after his opponent scratched on the break in the fourth game but failed to secure position on the 6 ball and missed a bank shot. Appleton executed a sharp cut on the object ball then finished off the rack to pitch a 4-0 shutout and advance to the third round of the winner’s side of the bracket.
Appleton will face fellow Hall of Famer Mika Immonen in the third round Friday at 11 a.m. eastern time.

In other matches of the day, Roland Garcia took advantage of a handful of errors by three-time Mosconi Cup member Tyler Styer to earn a 4-0, 4-2 victory and Billiard Congress of America Hall of Famer Immonen needed an extra frame to survive a 7-6 shootout against Michael Schneider of Switzerland.

Competition resumes Thursday morning with notable matches including Denis Grabe of Estonia taking on Jasmin Ouschan at 11 a.m. eastern time, Garcia taking on Robbie Capito at 3 p.m. and Mieszko Fortunski of Poland meeting Hunter Lombardo on the one-loss side of the bracket at 6 p.m.

The Apex Wisconsin Open is the second event of the year for the Predator U.S. Pro Billiard Series and the first ever to be staged at Ho-Chunk Resort, a sprawling facility north of Madison which offers a 302-room hotel as well as spacious gaming and convention space.

Follow the Apex Wisconsin Open draw on the Predator US Pro Billiard Series FargoRate’s dedicated page
The Apex Wisconsin Open is streamed for free all week on Billiard TV and the World Billiard TV YouTube channel.
Go to Billiard TV to watch 24/7 Billiard Videos on any device
Follow @probilliardseries on Facebook, @probilliardseries on Instagram or @PBilliardSeries on Twitter to follow the event.

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EPBF Antalya Open Day Two – Big Names Fall as Field Reduces to 16

Ronnie Regli

The field is down to the last 16 at the Dynamic Billiard Turkish Open with some of the heavyweight favourites for the title suffering shock losses in the round of 32. Played out at the Venezia Palace Hotel on the Antalyan coast in Turkey, this is the third stop on the Euro Tour in 2021.

With some names absent from the event this time around, it was a terrific opportunity for others to climb the rankings but for No.2 ranked Eklent Kaci, WPA World No.2 David Alcaide, and veteran champion Niels Feijen it was all over in the last 32.

Kaci (Albania) who recently triumphed in the WPA World 10 Ball Championship in Las Vegas, went out 9-6 to Finland’s Kim Laaksonen while Feijen departed 9-5 to Mariusz Skoneczny, another in a very long line of strong Polish players.

David Alcaide had the misfortune to run into Switzerland’s ever-dangerous Ronnie Regli who prevailed via a 9-6 scoreline.

There are some exciting matches set for tomorrow (Saturday) as the event concludes with four more rounds to find a champion. The picks of the round of 16 are the talented Pole Wojciech Szewczyk against Czech/German veteran Roman Hybler, dangerman Ronnie Regli against up-and-coming Dane Mickey Krause and Norway’s Matt Schnetje v Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz as the Spaniard hunts back-to-back Euro Tour victories.

Play gets underway at midday local time with the championship match scheduled for 17.30.

Meanwhile, alongside the men’s’ event is the Antalya Open on the Predator Euro Tour Women.

Starting with 32 runners, the event is now down to the final four who play off tomorrow (Saturday) at 10.00 local time, with the final following at midday.

Russia’s Kristina Tkach looks to be the favourite following an intensive summer competing in men’s events with some success, but she will need to overcome Ana Gradisnik (Slovenia) first. In the other semi-final, Kamila Khodjaeva, who had the unenviable job of beating her sister Diana in the quarter finals, takes on Poland’s Oliwia Zalewska, who is the defending champion following her win here in 2019.

All the matches can be viewed live at www.kozoom.com

Results, live scoring and draw are available at www.epbf.com

Germany To Meet Estonia In World Cup Of Pool Semi-Finals

QUARTER-FINALS
Denmark 5-9 Germany
Philippines 4-9 Estonia

Germany will meet Estonia in the World Cup of Pool semi-finals after beating Denmark and Philippines respectively at Stadium MK, Milton Keynes on Thursday evening.

After Great Britain and Slovakia had won through in the afternoon session, Germany saw off Denmark 9-5 with both Joshua Filler and Christof Reintjes performing strongly, and the story was the same for Estonia as Denis Grabe and Mark Magi eliminated Philippines 9-4.

There was nothing to split Denmark (Mickey Krause & Bahram Lotfy) and Germany (Joshua Filler & Christof Reintjes) after the first eight of a potential 17 racks. Germany took the ninth and then Filler delivered his second golden break of the tournament to put his country two ahead, the first time either of them had a lead of more than one.

Denmark pulled one back but Germany extended their lead again, and then made it 8-5 with a 7/9 combo left for Filler by Lotfy.

Germany didn’t have a shot after breaking on the hill but got the better of the safety exchange and once they had a chance, Filler and Reintjes didn’t allow Denmark back to the table.

“We made twice as many balls on the break as they did, I think that and our safety game was our big advantage in the match,” said Filler. “The focus is playing the best you can. In this format, with winner breaks, your opponent can make five or six runouts but you just have to focus on yourself.

“The golden break was a big 9-ball because it took us two ahead. In a long tournament you need to improve in every match and that’s what we will continue to do hopefully.”

Reintjes added: “To play with the best player in the world is amazing; every shot goes right into the heart of the pocket. We wanted to do better in this match because in the first two matches we had a lot of things to improve, but in this match we had better chemistry.”

Germany will meet Estonia in the semi-finals after Denis Grabe and Mark Magi completed a confident 9-4 win over Filipino duo Roberto Gomez and Jeff De Luna.

Estonia started off strong, leading 2-0 and 3-1. De Luna then pulled off a highlights reel jump to bank the 1 up table. However, Gomez then missed the four and Estonia were back to the table to lead 4-1. Grabe and Magi continued to turn the screw, extending the lead to 5-1.

At 6-1 up Estonia allowed Philippines a route back when Grabe lost control of the cue ball in making the 4. It left Magi with a difficult cut which he didn’t make, and Gomez and De Luna got out of their seats to steal the rack.

It wasn’t the start of a momentum swing, however, as Estonia took the next for a 7-2 lead. Philippines hit back with two racks to close the gap but a brilliant Grabe safety helped Estonia open up the table at 7-4 and he and Magi cleared to reach the hill.

Philippines had a great chance to cut the gap and make Estonia sweat, but De Luna missed the 8. Grabe then made it but Magi hit the 9 hard down table and it rattled out. The cue was tied to the bottom rail and Gomez couldn’t make it up table and Grabe cut the 9-ball home.

Both semi-finals will be played on Friday afternoon before the race-to-11 final in the evening session from 5:30pm. The World Cup of Pool is broadcast live globally including on Sky Sports, DAZN and Matchroom.Live. Full broadcast details can be found at matchroompool.com.

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