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Zalewska, Tahti & Neuhausen Take Final EC Golds

Oliwia Zalewska

Poland’s Oliwia Zalewska won her third Dynamic Billard European Championships gold medal, this time in the Women’s 9-Ball, as she enjoyed a surprisingly easy win over Slovenian hope Ana Gradisnik, running out a 7-0 winner. The Polish girl had won the 8-ball title in Antalya last year.

Having not really showed in the other disciplines, Zalewska saved her best till last. She lost her first match in the 9-ball division but battled her way through the one-loss side to reach the single elimination last 16. Wins over Silvia Lopez Fibla (Spain) and Sweden’s My Nguyen left her a semi-final pairing against Spain’s dangerous Amalia Matas. A 7-0 win put her into the championship match which she cruised through for the gold.

“During the final, I wasn’t thinking about winning the title; I’m thinking about the game and my level of playing. Of course, I love this feeling of winning and yes, the whole of the time spent practising and the emotions that go into it are all a big part of this victory,” said Zalewska.

The gold medallist is the mother of an 18-month-old child and added, “I’m sorry my baby can’t be here with me and my husband but it would be too long to spend away from home so we will all enjoy this title when we get home.”

WOMEN’S

Final
Oliwia Zalewska (POL) 7 – 0 Ana Gradisnik (SLO)

Semi Finals
Oliwia Zalewska (POL) 7 – 0 Amalia Matas (ESP)
Ana Gradisnik (SLO) 7 – 4 Sara Rocha (POR)

WHEELCHAIR

Jouni Tahti

In the wheelchair division Jouni Tahti made it an unbelievable 28th Dynamic Billard European Championship gold medal as he came from behind to outpace Ireland’s Fred Dinsmore, winning 7 – 6 in a battle royale. The Finn collected his first ever EC gold in 2002 and 20 years later, he is still the wheelchair games dominant force.

Dinsmore, who had already won bronze and silver in the 10-ball and 8-ball respectively, looked on his way to a gold medal, holding a 6-3 lead but Tahti, showed why he is a serial gold medallist as he dug in and pipped the Irishman at the post.

Commented Tahti, “When I was 6-3 down, I didn’t give up as there is always hope and I knew I could turn it around. To win gold medals you often need to overcome very tough situations and I’m pleased I had what it took to achieve that. I’m really looking forward to defending my title in Tampere next year and I’ll be going all out for three gold medals in my home country.”

Final
Jouni Tahti (FIN) 7 – 6 Fred Dinsmore (IRE)

Semi Finals
Jouni Tahti (FIN) 7 – 5 David Beaumont (GBR)
Fred Dinsmore (IRE) 7 – 5 Henrik Larsson (SWE)

UNDER 23

Moritz Neuhausen

Moritz Neuhausen, the 2019 Under 17’s and 2021 Under19’s WPA World 9 Ball Champion, added another trophy to his cabinet as he won an all-German final 9-7 to take 9-ball gold at the Dynamic Billard European Championships. His opponent Luca Menn gave him a tough battle but it was Neuhausen who prevailed to add to his credentials as a potential new German superstar of the game.

Neuhausen, 21, had survived a gripping hill-hill thriller in his semi-final match against another star of the future in Norway’s Emil Andre Gangflot. There is an overflow of top young talent in Europe currently and Neuhausen may just be the pick of the bunch.

“That’s my first title in the Under 23 division. I had two titles previously, one in teams so I’m really happy with this win. I’ve won some big titles in my age group and hopefully I can take that forward into open tournaments but there’s a lot of space for improvement and I’ll keep working hard,” said Neuhausen.

Final
Moritz Neuhausen (GER) 9 – 7 Luca Menn (GER)

Semi Finals
Luca Menn (GER) 9 – 3 Haris Trtovac (SRB)
Moritz Neuhausen (GER) 9 – 8 Emil Andre Gangflot (NOR)

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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The Road to Glory – World Junior 9-Ball Championship

Three World titles were to be won on this final day of the 2021 Predator World Junior 9-Ball Championships in Kalgenfurt, Austria. In the morning, the faces of the youngsters warming up for their D-day showed the enormity of what could be achieved. To have their name added to the WPA hall of fame and tohave their name cemented in 9-ball history.

Austria, being the organizing country fared well in the girls’ division. One Austrian semi-final guaranteed one in the final. Kapeller, already having survived a hill-hill decider in the quarterfinal, had yet another one in the semi-final against her compatriot Lena Primus. This time she found herself on the receiving end though, falling victim to Primus’ fighting spirit.The other semi-final was contested between Polish Pawelczyk and Korean Kim. This turned out to be a much more one-sided affair. Kim barraged through to the final with a 9-4 victroy.

The final was what one can expect, filled with great shots, unforced errors and drama. Of the two, Primus was the one keeping her composure best in the first half of the match. What impressed in the second half was firstly the ferocious fightback by Kim, refusing to roll over. Then, when Kim was breathing down Primus’neck, the question was whether the Austrian would be able to withstand the pressure. She did just that and more. It unleashed her true potential and she powered on to victory. 9-7 the victory, a spot in the World 10-ball Championship for women in september here in Klagenfurt, Austria, but most importantly….the title for life, the World Champion 2021.

In the U17 division it was Netherlands versus Poland. Two young guns, two European champions who have fought it out more than once in the European Championships. Jastrzab from poland the reigning European 8-ball Champion, Dutch Pongers the current European 9-ball Champion. The were favourites to make it to the final from day one, but it had by no means been easy. Pongers beat wildcard Rompanen from Finland in the semi-final with the narrowest of margins. Jastrzab beat young Japanese Oda by a score of 9-7. Young Oda, it must be said, won the hearts of the fans with his stroke, his demeanour and table presence. What a character and player…but this time he would have to settle for bronze.

The final was a lopsided affair. Where after an error-strewn opening phase, Jastrzab clicked into gear, Pongers continued to struggle with the shotclock, his gameplan and his timing. Little mistakes did Jastrzab need from his Nederland-opponent, who looked dim and down in the chair. The Polish Champion put on a clinic and showed the world what a classy player he is. Textbook perfect alignemtn and cue-action and truly a perfect temperament for our game. Hail Dominik, the World U17 Champion!!

In the U19-final, with German Neuhausen and Polish Kural battling it out, the title-fight had even more gravity than the two previous finals. Neuhausen was the U17 World Champion two years ago, winning today meant he could join an even more elite group. Kural, after Jastrzab earlier, could become World Champion and thus the second on the day for Poland. On a sidenote, Riley Adkins became only the fourth US-medalist in a Junior World Championship ever. He fell prey to Kural in the semi-final with a clear scoreline of 11-5. Riley is learning the trade from his father Dee, who is a former All Around Champion at the Derby City Classic.

Neuhausen was the favourite in this final. The final was for him to lose more than for Kural to win, so was the thought of many. The German has more experience and therefore more composure in the pressure-packed arena. That is a big burden, a lot of weight to carry. He was not flawless in the opening phase, but exactly that experience and composure seemed to prove the difference. After another missed opportunity by Kural, Neuhausen looked to extend his lead to 5-1. But as Neuhausen failed to convert, a different script was put to paper. Kural from Krakow sensed fragility, managed to put his own into perspective and started to look the better player of the two. Once Kural levelled the score and put his neck in front a couple of times, it looked like hill-hill was written allover this final. It was 6-6, 7-7 and 8-8.

Krakow, or Poland for that matter started believing their boy could go all the way and secure a second gold on the day. The shift in the way this match evolved helped Neuhausen. No longer the clear favourite, no longer the thought about how it should be…pure survival. He managed to produce a solid and robust 10 minutes at the right time. He pulled away and finish clinically to clinch his second World title. It reminds of the saying:”Soccer is 90 minutes 11 against 11 and then the Germans win”. He came with it when it was needed the most and that is what champions do. It was the last Junior World Championship for young Moritz and he looks well on his way to follow the footsteps of many iconic compatriots that have gone before him: Ortmann, Souquet, Hohmann, Filler.

And so this festival in Klagenfurt comes to an end. Predator and its team have fueled the engine for the growth of the sport. They have brought great pool to the audience with a triple-A production and a beautifully suspenseful shootout-format. We, the people, crave for more of the same. Lastly, this would not have been possible without the commitment of the local organizers, the volunteers and the billiard-loving community of Klagenfurt. We all leave for home tired, satisfied and very much looking forward to the next gathering.

Let Pool be the winner always.

Defending Champion Gorst Out Of World Pool Championship

Skyler Woodward

Fedor Gorst’s World Pool Championship defence came to an end at the hands of USA’s Skyler Woodward, who came from 8-4 down to win 11-8 at Marshall Arena, Milton Keynes.

After a shaky start, Woodward was staring down the barrel of defeat but settled himself and won seven consecutive racks, keeping Gorst largely rooted to his seat and unable to stem the tide of the two-time Mosconi Cup MVP, who will now face Denmark’s Bahram Lotfy in the last 32.

“When I was 8-4 down I was waiting for a chance to take control and that’s what I did,” said Woodward. “I knew I couldn’t give him a chance because he was three games away so if I gave him a game off my break he was two away and I would be out of here.

“Having the race to 11 was nice, because at 8-4 if he was on the hill it would have been a little different thinking from me if it was race to 9. I have to keep focused, keep doing what I am doing and I can go deep.”

Jayson Shaw suffered a bruising defeat to Shane van Boening, who has been one of the best and most consistent performers of the tournament so far. The five-time US Open Champion looked in good rhythm as he dumped International Open winner Shaw out of the event.

The last 32 commences at 6pm this evening, live on Sky Sports, DAZN and Matchroom.Live. Among the standout ties is Germany’s former World Champion Thorsten Hohmann against Predator Championship League Pool winner Albin Ouschan. Team USA’s Billy Thorpe faces Dutchman Marc Bijsterbosch, while Karl Boyes’ comeback continues with the World Cup finalist in action against Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz after a 11-5 win over Moritz Neuhausen in the last 64.

Joshua Filler won an entertaining clash with Darren Appleton 11-8 and now faces Naoyuki Oi, who knocked out World Pool Masters winner Alex Kazakis 11-6.

The full draw and brackets for the knockout stages can be found at matchroompool.com, along with live scoring throughout the event. For all the latest news and announcements follow Matchroom Pool on FacebookTwitterYouTube and Instagram.

Gorst Fights Back To Get World Pool Championship Defense Off To Winning Start

Fedor Gorst

Fedor Gorst survived a huge scare in the opening match of his World Pool Championship defence as he fought back from 5-1 and 6-2 down to defeat Estonia’s Mark Magi 9-7 at Marshall Arena, Milton Keynes.

Jayson Shaw found himself 6-0 down against World Under-17 champion Moritz Neuhausen of Germany. But the former US Open champion and current Mosconi Cup MVP, being watched by European captain Alex Lely, wasn’t going to lie down and began a confident fightback, winning eight racks without reply. The German youngster cut the deficit to 8-7 with Shaw on the hill but the Scot wrapped up the match 9-7.

There were also opening session wins for Predator Championship League Pool winner Albin Ouschan, who beat Fabio Petroni 9-5, and Finland’s Mika Immonen who beat Kristina Tkach 9-4 having been 3-1 down early on.

The World Pool Championship opens with a double elimination group stage, so those who have already won one match are one away from reaching the last 64. Those who lost their opening fixtures play again on Monday, against another player who has suffered defeat and the loser will be eliminated.

Former World Champion Thorsten Hohmann came through a hill-hill finish against German compatriot Tobias Bongers, and World Under-19 Champion Jonas Souto Comino of Spain inflicted a 9-3 defeat on Karol Skowerski.

Alex Kazakis, who was recently crowned World Pool Masters champion, was up against his mixed-doubles partner Kelly Fisher, the Women’s World Champion, and the Greek star was a 9-1 winner.

Gorst had twice been four racks down on the TV table at the start of the session, but took five in succession to lead Magi 7-6. The defending champion missed a 9 to reach the hill, but having levelled at 7-7 Magi didn’t take another rack and Gorst won 9-7. He’ll face Mark Gray for a place in the last 64.

The World Pool Championship continues at 6pm (UK) time on Sunday, June 6 and is broadcast live on Sky Sports, DAZN and Matchroom.Live. Live scoring as well as complete tournament results and match schedule can be found at www.matchroompool.com.

Successful year for EPBF

Moritz Neuhausen (GER), WC Under 17

The year 2019 is coming to an end and the EPBF would like to once again congratulate all its athletes who gained an international title this year.
 
Especially the World Champions shall be named here. In the men’s 9-ball division, Fedor Gorst (RUS) just recently conquered the World Champion Title in Doha, Qatar with a 13:11 victory in the final match over Chang Jung Lin (TPE).
 
In the women’s 9-ball Championship, Kelly Fisher (GBR) snatched the crown against Jasmin Ouschan (AUT) in the final match with 9:7. With that result, the Gold as well as the Silver Medal went to the EPBF.
 
Also in the Youth 9-Ball Championships, the EPBF was by far the most successful federation. In the Under 17s division, Moritz Neuhausen (GER) took the title while Jonas Souto (ESP) defeated Sanjin Pehlivanovic (BIH) in the final match of the Under 19s. Valeria Trushevskaia (RUS) completed the European Medal collection with a Bronze Medal in the girls division.
 
Also other international events of high profile were won by European athletes.
 
Our best wishes and congratulations also go out to all winner’s and titleists from this year’s European Championships in Veldhoven, The Netherlands.
 
We hope that 2020 will be as successful for us as 2019 was!

European Youth Team Wins Two Out Of Three Titles

Tomas Brikmanis, Moritz Neuhausen, Valeriia Trushevskaia, Sanjin Pehlivanovic, Jonas Souto, Gabi Ham

The European Youth squad won two out of three titles during the recent WPA World 9-Ball Championships. Moritz Neuhausen (GER) took the title in the Under 17 division while Jonas Souto (ESP) defeated Sanjin Pehlivanovic (BIH) in the final of the Under 19 division. Valeriia Trushevskaia (RUS) won the bronze medal in the girls division.
 
The WPA Youth World 9-Ball Championships 2019 were held in Nicosia, Cyprus. Team EUROPE consisted of 7 local players plus 13 players from the EPBF nomination system. The team was accompanied by the Youth Sports Director of the EPBF, Tomas Brikmanis from Estonia and Germany’s Gabi Hammer. The nominated players through the EPBF were:
 
GIRLS
My Nguyen (SWE), Aleksandra Guleikova (RUS), Valeriia Trushevskaia (RUS), Nina Torvund (NOR) and Bojana Sarac (SRB)
 
UNDER 17
 
Emil-Andre Gangfløt (NOR), Dominik Jastrzab (POL), Szymon Kural (POL) and Moritz Neuhausen (GER)
 
UNDER 19
 
Christoffer Lentz (DEN), Froehlich (GER), Sanjin Pehlivanovic (BIH) and Jonas Souto (ESP)
 
The draw was generally not in favour of the Europeans since they played each other pretty early during the event. However, the result is more than successful for team Europe. The nomination of the players took place after this year’s European Youth Championships in Veldhoven, The Netherlands. The EPBF covered all costs for players and both coaches such as travel, transfer and daily allowances. Hotel costs were covered by the organiser so all participants were able to have all costs being taken care of.
 
In the Under 17s, there was no real favourite before the event. Neuhausen, who took the title in the end was among the stranger players together with Joey Tate (USA) and Khalid Alghamdi (KSA). The field however was pretty levelled and saw many close results. To his horror, Neuhausen lost his first round match to Alghamdi with 6:7. He had to go to the loser’s side straight away. There, he eliminated teammate Szymon Kural 7:2 and whitewashed Haydar Capo (CAN) 7:0. In the loser’s qualification round, Neuhausen once more had a close encounter. He barely stayed alive against Dominik Jastrzab and won 7:6 to advance to the single elimination stage. There, he took down Yushi Muramatsu (JPN) 9:0. He went on and took revenge from Alghamdi, winning 9:6 in the semi-final. The final match was won by Neuhausen with 9:5 over Huan Fu (CHN).
 
In the Under 19s, Jonas Souto funnily enough also lost his opening match. He fell to the sharp blade of Shamir Tremus (CURACAO) with 5:9. Then he took down Stylianos Loukaides (CYP) 9:1 to then eliminate last year’s Champion Makheal Parris (USA) 9:5. The victory in his next match with 9:8 over Lukas Fracasso-Verner (USA) booked Souto a seat in the single elimination stage. He continued his quest to take down Kaiden Hunkins (USA) 11:8 and Robbie Capito (HKG) 11:9 to enter the final match against teammate Sanjin Pehlivanovic. Some favourites like Christian Froehlich and Robbie Capito started their tournament out very well but their performance went down towards the end of the eevnt. Pehlivanovic and Souto were the last two athletes standing in the Under 19 division. The final match turned into a thriller one more time with Souto having the better ending on his side. 11:9 was the final result that brought the title for the Spaniard.
 
The girls division saw a deserved victory of Yi-Hsuan Lu (CHN). The Chinese dominated the field together with last year’s runner-up Seoa Seo (KOR). Lu finally defeated Sea in the semi-final with 9:7. Valeriia Trushevskaia lost her semi-final match also 7:9 to Tamami Okuda (JPN). In the final match, Lu defeated Okuda 9:5.
 
Stated EPBF Youth Sports Director Tomas Brikmanis after the event: „The end result for team Europe was very good. 2 golds out of three is a fantastic result. Unfortunately, some players were not able to get medals, but this is sports. Maybe high hopes did not help Emil Andre Gangflot, My Nguen and Christoffer Lentz. There is a good potential with Alexandra Guleikova and Bojana Sarac and both polish athletes. If they get some experience, then I am sure they will win something in the future.“
 
The President of the EPBF, Gre Leenders, congratulated also all participants for a great job representing Europe: „Looking at the results of the EPBF delegation I can only congratulate all athletes with their achievements. 2 Gold medals (U17) & (U19), 1 silver medal (U19) and one bronze medal (Girls), is a proof of the high playing level these young athletes already have. The competition is not easy with high quality athletes from continents like Asia and North America. Also the “younger” continental bodies like Latin America and Africa presented already a good level of athletes. These results also mark that the structures, build in the 40 years history of the EPBF, are working. The work done in the national federations is very important and the seamless cooperation between the National EPBF Federations and the EPBF itself does help these young athletes to develop in the best environment. Therefore, we must also express our appreciation towards these National bodies who are responsible for this tremendous job. Congratulations also to all our EPBF members.“