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Draw Made For UK Open Pool Championship

The draw has been made for the inaugural UK Open Pool Championship taking place at the Copper Box Arena, London from May 17-22 with tickets available from only £15 to enjoy the action as 256 players battle it out for a share of $200,000.

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Nineball World No.1 Shane Van Boening heads into the tournament as the newly crowned World Champion and starts his bid to become the first-ever UK Open winner against James Channon of Great Britain. 2022 World Pool Masters champion Joshua Filler meets Robert Hart whilst British favourites Jayson Shaw and Chris Melling face Ali Hirji Kheraj and Petr Urban, respectively. Albin Ouschan will take on Sergio Lagunas whilst the World Snooker Tour’s duo of Martin Gould and Gary Wilson take on Tashunka Schultz and Blaine Barcus.

Players were seeded based on the combination of the 2022 Nineball World Ranking and 2023 Nineball World Ranking alongside the WPA Rankings.

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

From Tuesday, 17 May to Friday, 20 May fans will be able to enjoy the action globally on the Matchroom Pool Facebook and YouTube pages as well as Matchroom.Live with two tables streamed. The tournament will also be live on betting websites around the world.

The final two days are available on Sky Sports in the UK and Ireland, DAZN in the USA, Canada, Spain, Italy, 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.

Day 1 Streamed Matches Below 09:00 am to 06:00 pm

Table 1 – Matchroom Pool Facebook / Matchroom.Live

Match 1: Ko Pin-Yi (13) vs Chun Hao Man

Match 2: Chris Melling (59) vs Petr Urban

Match 3: Joshua Filler (7) vs Robert Hart

Match 4: Albin Ouschan (2) vs Sergio Lagunas

Match 5: Martin Gould (74) vs Tashunka Schultz

Match 6: Shane Van Boening (1) vs James Channon

Table 2 – Matchroom Pool YouTube / Matchroom.Live

Match 1: Kelly Fisher (35) vs Tayfun Teber

Match 2: Ko Ping Chung (11) vs Dominic Clemens

Match 3: Naoyuki Oi (5) vs Adam Humphries

Match 4: Gary Wilson (61) vs Blaine Barcus

Match 5: Lo Ho Sum (78) vs Kinga Rauk

Match 6: Jayson Shaw (14) vs Ali Hirji Kheraj

The week will begin with a Press Conference live from the Copper Box Arena, London on Monday 16, May at 5 pm UK time live on Facebook and YouTube.

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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New Additions To Team Mezz

Kristina Zlateva

The team at Mezz Cues HQ isn’t resting as more sponsored players are added to the Mezz Cues family.

At the top of the list of latest additions is Bulgarian Champion Kristina Zlateva. Zlateva is a multiple time Nationals Champion with many third place finishes on the Ladies Eurotour. She secured a second place finish in the European Team Championship and a bronze medal in the European 8-Ball Championship.

Zlateva plays with a Mezz EC9-K4 with a WX Sigma shaft. “I’m so excited to upgrade my game with Mezz cues! I love the feeling of comfort and security they give me.” said Zlateva about her new sponsorship.

Another great new member to Team Mezz is current #1 on the Czech Pool Tour, Petr Urban. Urban is a multiple Czech National Champion, has won the Czech Scotch Doubles National Championship, and Team Championship in 2019. Then, he returned in 2020 to defend his Team Championship title while also adding the Czech National Singles 8-Ball title to his resume.

“I am honored to be a part of this amazing brand. I have been playing with Mezz products for over 10 years. Being a part of the Mezz lineage has always been my dream and I’m really looking forward to this cooperation.” beamed Urban.

Petr Urban

National Championships are nothing new for another new Team Mezz Member; Alen Muratovic hails from Bosnia and Herzegovina where he is an eight time National Champion. Muratovic was the winner of the country’s first European Championship Bronze Medal at the European Championships and has won multiple open events in Sarajevo.

Muratovic commented that he was expecting to have even more success on the national scene with his new association with Mezz sponsorship. “This sponsorship means a lot to me because Mezz equipment is top quality. I would like to thank Mezz as it means a lot to me to improve the quality of my game, which I have no doubt about with the top equipment of Mezz.”

The latest player to join Team Mezz is Johanna Vartainen who hails from Lappeenranta, Finland. Vartainen is a four-time Finnish National Champion who also owns a bronze medal from the Nordic Championship.

Vartainen plays with the Mezz EC9-K4 with an Ignite shaft. Like Muratovic, she sees great things in her future with her new Mezz sponsorship. “It is an honour to represent Mezz amongst the best players around the world. Now my game will reach the next level.” she commented.

 

Gomez Survives Brave Ouschan Fightback At World Pool Championship

Albin Ouschan congratulates Roberto Gomez

Roberto Gomez defeated Albin Ouschan 9-7 to advance to the last 64 of the World Pool Championship at Marshall Arena, Milton Keynes, but only after a brilliant fightback from the Austrian, who had been 8-0 down.

Ouschan is still alive in the double elimination event and will now face a sudden-death play-off to qualify for the straight-knockout stage. After getting on the board at 8-0 down, Ouschan would have thought his fightback was brief until Gomez missed an 8, and from then the 2016 World Champion set to work on winning six consecutive racks before a missed 6 at just one behind gave his Filipino opponent the chance to win.

Also on the TV table on Sunday evening was US No.1 Shane van Boening, who got his tournament off with a 9-3 win over Petr Urban. He’ll now face fellow American Oscar Dominguez for a place in the last 64.

Germany’s Veronika Ivanovskaia shocked Greece’s Nick Malai with a 9-7 victory, the first win for one of the tournament’s eight female entrants. Ivanovskaia’s compatriot Joshua Filler also got off to a winning start, beating Belarsus’ Margarite Fefilova.

American female April Larson gave Chris Melling a scare before the Brit closed out a 9-7 victory, while Darren Appleton booked his place in the last 64 with a 9-2 success over Germany’s Christof Reintjes, who was on the winning side when the pair were on opposing teams in the World Cup of Pool final last month.

Defending champion Fedor Gorst is safely through to the last 64 after wins over Mark Magi and Mark Gray. Team USA’s Mosconi Cup star Billy Thorpe has also won through the groups stage, as had former World Champion Thorsten Hohmann.

The World Pool Championship continues at 12pm (UK) time on Monday, June 7 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.

Brilliant Netherlands Into Quarter Finals But Great Britain B Out At World Cup Of Pool

ROUND 1
Philippines 7
-3 Great Britain B

ROUND 2
Finland 1-7 Netherlands
Slovakia 7-6 Czech Republic

Netherlands fired a warning shot to the rest of the field as they stormed into the quarter-finals of the World Cup of Pool with a near-perfect 7-1 victory over an out-of-sorts Finland.

Slovakia are also through to the last eight having beaten Czech Republic in the tournament’s first hill-hill match, while Great Britain B’s Allison and Kelly Fisher crashed out 7-3 in round one to the Filipino pairing of Jeff De Luna and Roberto Gomez.

Niels Feijen has twice been a World Cup runner up, in 2013 and 2014, both playing alongside Nick van den Berg. Marc Bijsterbosch stepped up in 2017 after Van den Berg retired, and their 7-1 drilling of Petri Makkonen and Casper Matikainen was probably the best performance the new Dutch duo have put in together.

Finland, and particularly their rookie Matikainen, struggled at the table but in contrast the Netherlands were near faultless in booking their place in the quarter-finals.

“We played well, with confidence and we did a good job,” said Bijsterbosch. “We can’t complain today, but we aren’t there, we have to prepare for the next match and we have to keep going.

“We know Finland are a really good team but we looked at our own game and we really, really hit it off today, it was a great match,” said Feijen. “We are really enjoy this, we played a great match and we get some time to enjoy that.

“I felt really good, Marc, if you leave him tough he is still central so that gives me a lot of confidence too. If we keep playing like this, we are dangerous.”

Czech Republic lead their match against Slovakia 4-2 but with the chance to go 5-3 ahead failed to capitalise when Polach missed the 9; Gavenciak also failing to conclude the rack with a long pot. Koniar took the easy 9 left for him, and Slovakia led for the first time in the match when they went 5-4 up.

The tenth went the way of the Czechs, but Slovakia regained their lead after a dry break to reach the hill at 6-5 up. The next rack was a reversal of its predecessor; this time Slovakia breaking dry and Czech Republic taking advantage to join their opponents on the hill.

Gavenciak was breaking but again came up dry. Polach played safe and though Urban’s reply seemed to have done enough, Koniar played off the side rail to make the 1. It didn’t present his side with the opportunity to clear, though, and at his next visit he scratched on the 2.

The table didn’t look easy and even when Urban missed a straight 4, Czech Republic fell safe. Koniar then benefited from a bit of fortune in making the 4 trying to escape a snooker and this time the roadmap was there, and Slovakia cleared the table for a place in the quarter-finals where either Russia or Japan will await.

The session had opened with a highly-anticipated round one match between Great Britain B and Philippines. The all-female British pairing looked to have settled quickly and took the second rack to keep the scores level early on. However, De Luna and Gomez were breaking well and managed to open up a 5-1 lead before Great Britain B next won a rack. Despite falling further behind, Fisher and Fisher cut the gap to 6-3 but that was to be their last rack as Philippines took the next to close out a 7-3 win.

“We had a great time out there,” said Allison. “it has been a while for me and I really enjoyed it. There were some good shots in there but we never got going. We had a nice start to the match and we were never really frozen out but some of the games were a bit awkward. At this stage for me the most important thing is to have fun out there and I really enjoyed it.”

“We are competitors so we are disappointed, of course,” said Kelly. “In the match we never really got the chance to get going, everything fell a bit awkward. Me and Allison are great friends off the table, we gel well together, and we have loved every moment and had fun.”

Round one concludes on Tuesday evening with USA taking on Australia, Great Britain C in action against South Africa and Great Britain A up against Belarus.

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.

For all the latest news and announcements follow Matchroom Pool on FacebookTwitterYouTube and Instagram.

Slovakia Stun Austria To Knock Defending Champs Out Of World Cup Of Pool

ROUND 1 RESULTS
Japan 7-1 Croatia
Czech Republic 7-4 Hungary
Austria 1-7 Slovakia

World Cup of Pool debutants Slovakia stunned defending champions Austria, knocking out the No.1 seeds with a brilliant 7-1 victory on the opening afternoon at Stadium MK, Milton Keynes.

Albin Ouschan and Mario He have reached the last three World Cup finals, lifting the trophy in 2017 and 2019. However, Jakub Koniar and Jaroslav Polach barely gave their opponents a chance as Slovakia proved exactly why they had been invited for the first time. A little luck along the way helped but Koniar and Polach looked calm at the table as they ran four of the seven racks won to advance to the second round.

“It is amazing,” said Koniar. “We had a little bit of luck in the beginning but with the 1-ball on the spot and winner breaks, you can even beat the best team in the world.

“We knew we could win. I have beaten Albin a few times, Jaro has won against both players in the Austrian Bundesliga, so we knew if we played our best game we could win.

“We practiced the break all last weekend together,” added Polach. “We played a hard break, the cue ball control was good, and we had a little bit of luck, but from 2-1 to 6-1 they weren’t at the table. In this game you can beat anybody in the world.”

Slovakia will face Czech Republic in the second round after a 7-4 success over Hungary for the Czechs.

“It will be a federal derby,” said Jaroslav. “We play every year something like the Mosconi Cup between Czech Republic and Slovakia. It hasn’t played last year because of Covid so now we will play one scotch doubles to see who is best!”

The event opened with Japanese favourite Naoyuki Oi, alongside debutant Masato Yoshioka, up against Croatian duo Philipp Stojanovic and Roberto Bartol.

Yoshioka earned his first appearance in the World Cup on the back of a fine run of form prior to the Covid-19 lockdown. A win in the Kansai Open in his homeland and a bronze medal at the World 10-Ball Championship helped him rise to Japanese No.1 and World No. 36.

In their opening match, he actually looked the more comfortable of the pair, his experienced partner struggling at times with cue-ball control. Croatia, though, were really struggling. Japan only ran out one rack, so even with the winner breaks format the Europeans had chances, but they were only able to take one of them and Japan eventually won 7-1, a result which meant TV viewers were treated to another colourful Oi interview.

“It was a very fast match today, the table was playing very quick with the new ball and the new cloth. It was difficult but my teammate was confident,” he said, before treating those watching to a victory dance. “In the next round it will be Russia, they have the World Champion, or Switzerland who are very good, they have strong players. But Japan will play to win.”

After Japan’s cruising first-round victory, the clash between Czech Republic (Petr Urban and Michal Gavenciak) and Hungary (Oliver Szolnoki and Vilmos Foldes) was a more attritional affair. The Czech team’s preparations were hit when Roman Hybler had to withdraw less than a week before the event, but Urban proved a worth deputy.

The first six racks were shared before the Czech team pulled ahead and moved to the hill at 6-3 up. Hungary fought back briefly but their campaign was ended when Urban and Gavenciak won the 11th for a 7-4 victory.

The World Cup of Pool continues from 5:30pm (UK time) this evening with three more first round matches; Russia will face Switzerland, Greece take on Serbia and Estonia are up against Belgium.

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.

For all the latest news and announcements follow Matchroom Pool on FacebookTwitterYouTube and Instagram.