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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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Pin-Yi goes undefeated, downs Zielinski in finals of 256-entrant Predator Bucharest Open

Ko Pin-Yi (IDM Pool Tour)

Zielinski takes top prize in 16-entrant Kamui Invitational

Poland’s Wiktor Zielinski has been on something of a roll over the past couple of months, and we all know how important ‘rolls’ are in any billiards game you care to name. He defeated the male half of the Killer Fillers (Joshua) in the finals of the Dynamic Billiard Lasko Open in February and then came across the ocean to down Aloysius Yapp in the finals of CSI’s Alfa Las Vegas Open in March. Last weekend (May 13-15), chalking up his flight miles, he headed back east and landed in Bucharest, Romania, where he claimed the 16-entrant, single-elimination Kamui Invitational title, defeating Boznia-Herzegovina’s Sanjin Pehlivanovic in the finals.

He also appeared in the finals of the concurrently-run, 256-entrant Predator Bucharest Open, but had his winning streak stopped by Taipei’s Ko Pin-Yi, who went undefeated through four rounds of double elimination and five rounds of single elimination play to snatch what would have been Zielinski’s third straight title from him in the finals. Though he’d been cashing in major tournaments all over the world (also on something of a roll and also chalking up his flight miles), it was Pin-Yi’s first recorded major victory since he laid claim to the 2018 China Open Men’s Division title.

Both events were hosted by the 20-year-old IDM Club in downtown Bucharest, about a mile or so east of the Dambovita river, which flows through the city for about 13 miles and is its main water supply. The IDM is a multi-functional sports club that offers members everything from fitness, body-building, swimming pools (a children’s leisure and a “semi-Olympic”), locker rooms, bowling, billiards, snooker, table tennis, darts and a restaurant, bar and children’s playground. US venues, take note.

Each of the 42 Brunswick Gold Crown IV pool tables in the IDM club was employed six times (+4) to get through the event’s opening round. Pin-Yi got through his opening rounds against Levent Kurtulus, Adi Petruscu and Michal Olech with an aggregate score of 27-4 to arrive at the winners’ side qualification round for single-elimination play against David Alcaide. Zielinski, in the meantime, found himself battling increased challenges. He allowed his first opponent, Albert Gabos, only a single rack but gave up six to Maor Shalom, before getting caught up in a double hill battle against Kevin Lannoye, which did eventually send him to the qualifying round versus Mustafa Alnar.

Among those also advancing to the qualifying round on the winners’ side were Shane Van Boening, Oliver Szolnoki, Denis Grabe, Thorsten Hohmann, Alex Kazakis, Mario He and Ko Pinc-Chung (who played each other), and Ralf Souquet and Nick Economopolous (who also played each other). There were 16 who advanced on the winners’ side to be among the 32 who would compete in the first single-elimination round. They were joined by the final 16 on the losers’ side of the bracket.

Two rounds later, the field was down to 8 in the quarterfinals. Ko Pin-Yi faced Souquet, who’d won his only loss-side match and come back to defeat Ko Ping-Chung. Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz faced Dimitri Jungo, Zielinski drew Petri Makkonen and Van Boening took on Mario He.

Ko Pin-Yi got by Souquet and Sanchez-Ruiz downed Jungo, both 11-3. Zielinski eliminated Makkonen 11-8 and Van Boening defeated He 11-9. In the semifinals that followed, Ko Pin-Yi defeated Ruiz 11-7, as Van Boening and Zielinski locked up in only the fourth double hill fight since the opening round of single-elimination play, with Van Boening involved in two of them. Zielinski advanced to face Ko Pin-Yi in the finals. 

Pin-Yi had come to the finals with a 70% game-winning average (79-34). He won 72% of the games he played in the race-to-13 finals against Zielinski, claiming the Predator Bucharest Open title 13-5.

Two out of four matches for Zielinski go double hill in Kamui Invitational

The Kamui Invitational, which required less than 20% of the 42 Brunswick Gold Crown IV’s in the IDM Club, once, to complete its 15-entrant opening round, featured 12 competitors who participated in the open event, Zielinski, Van Boening and David Alcaide among them. Ko Pin-Yi, however, was not on the roster.

Zielinski got by his opening opponent, Davy Piergiovanni well enough, but ran immediately into a double hill match against Naoyuki Oi in the quarterfinals. From the bottom half of the bracket, Zielinski’s eventual opponent in the finals, Sanjin Pehlivanovic, who’d gotten by Alex Montpelier, drew Alex Lely. Ralf Souquet, who’d drawn a bye in the opener, faced Ko Ping-Chung, while Van Boening and Alcaide rounded out the quarterfinal matchups.

Zielinski survived his double hill encounter with Oi and in the semifinals, drew Souquet, who’d eliminated Ping-Chung 8-3. Van Boening defeated Alcaide 8-4 to pick up Pehlivanovic, who’d shut Lely out.

Zielenski walked right into his second straight double hill match, against Souquet, but did advance to the finals. Pehlivanovic dropped Van Boening 8-5 to join him. Zielenski defeated Pehlivanovic 8-5 to claim the Kamui Invitational title and his third victory in as many months.

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Dynamic Billiard Treviso Open Down to 134 Players

Ralf Souquet

Following a lengthy day’s play at the Dynamic Billard Treviso Open at the BHR Treviso Hotel in the northern Italian town, some of the field has been whittled down after upwards of 15 hours of intense play. Of a starting line-up of 204 players, 70 were eliminated from the competition, leaving 134 left to battle on day two, Sunday.

Wojciech Szewczyk, hot off a crowning victory at the recent World 10 Ball Championship, was one of the few big names to succumb in their opening match. He lost out 9-1 to a fired-up Elliot Sanderson, one of the five British players in the field. The Polish star recovered though, beating Sweden’s Kai Kraft by a similar scoreline to keep his hopes alive.

Germany’s Ralf Souquet, a recent European Championship gold medallist, fell to Jonas Souto, the young Spaniard and former WPA World Junior Champion. 9-7 was the scoreline. Like Szewczyk, Souquet followed it up with a 9-2 victory over Antonio Colucci (Italy).

Another German veteran, Oliver Ortmann, made a welcome return to the Euro Tour. A previous winner on 14 occasions, Ortmann went down in a hill-hill opening match at the hands of Admir Muho (Albania). However, he bounced back with a confident 9-1 win over Italian Valerio Castellano to take his place in Sunday’s line-up.

Elsewhere, the youngest competitor in the event, 12-year-old Maks Benko (Slovenia) survived a a great day to stay alive in the event. After losing his first match, he enjoyed a fine 9-2 win over France’s Stephane Herman to set up a game against highly experienced Finn, Petri Makkonen, on Sunday. Despite his age, the youngster looks a marvellous prospect for the future as he exuded confidence and exhibited some quality shot-making.

The tournament continues at 9.00 on Sunday morning with the remainder of the Losers Round 2 matches as well as Losers Round 3 and Winners’ Round 2 games. The tournament concludes on Monday evening with the televised final stages.

All Euro Tour tournaments are 9-ball and players compete in a double-elimination format, playing down to the last 32 competitors, and
then single elimination until the finish. All matches are races to 9 racks with alternate break.

All the matches can be viewed live at www.kozoom.com
Results, live scoring and draw are available at www.epbf.com

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64 Remain At 2022 World Pool Championship | Alcaide And Woodward Out

Skyler Woodward (Taka G Wu/Matchroom Multi Sport)

David Alcaide and Skyler Woodward became two of the biggest exits so far as the 2022 World Pool Championship field was whittled down to the Last 64 at the Marshall Arena, Milton Keynes. Coverage live on Sky Sports in the UK/Ireland, DAZN in the USA, Canada, Brazil, Spain, Italy, Germany, Switzerland, and Austria as well as Viaplay and networks worldwide.

LAST 64 BRACKET

Losers’ Round 1 saw the first few scalps of the day as both Woodward and Alex Pagulayan were punished as they exited without a win to their name. Woodward lost out to Daniele Corrieri in the opening match, and he went hill-hill with Qatar’s Ali Al Obaidli who fluked the 9 in the penultimate rack to hold the break in the final one. Elsewhere, Pagulayan was much fancied heading into the tournament, but he faltered against former EuroTour winner Craig Osborne of Great Britain to exist early on the second day.

Rolling into the evening, it was Losers’ Qualification with 32 final players set to join the Last 64 and 32 going home. On Table 1, Jayson Shaw demolished Jakub Koniar 9-3 to see the two-time Mosconi Cup draw Finland’s Petri Makkonen in the Last 64. Alcaide was a World Pool Championship semi-finalist just under 12 months ago and his cueing suggested it would be straightforward’s against Hong Kong’s Lo Ho Sum who was knocked into the losers’ bracket by defending champion Albin Ouschan. Ho Sum though, held his nerve in some cagey early moments to pull through and find himself in the Last 64.

Pia Filler put in a stellar day to beat Ivan Meng Li in the afternoon and Bashar Hussein Abdulmajeed 9-6 to make the Last 64 for the first time and set up an enticing Table 1 match with Mario He at 11 am.

Things didn’t get much better for Mosconi Cup captain Jeremy Jones as he witnessed Billy Thorpe, Chris Reinhold, and Tyler Styer all exit on day two, but positives were taken from seeing Nicholas De Leon beat So Shaw and Toh Lian Han by 9-2 and 9-7 scores respectively. De Leon will now face Ouschan. There was also no such luck for Chris Melling who exited at the hands of Bahram Lotfy who will now meet Shane Van Boening tomorrow.

From now, it is single elimination with matches becoming Race to 11 up until the final. The draw saw the 32 players who won in Winners’ Qualification drawn against the 32 players who won in Losers’ Qualification this evening.

Mosconi Cup USA hopeful Shane Wolford has been drawn against Masato Yoshioka whilst Live (2023) Nineball World Rankings No.1  Francisco Sanchez Ruiz faces two-time World Champion, Thorsten Hohmann. Elliott Sanderson overcome a hill-hill finish with fellow Brit Tom Staveley to set up a clash with Chinese Taipei’s Chang Jung-Lin tomorrow.

FRIDAY 8, APRIL 11 am 

Table 1 – Where to Watch 

Mario He vs Pia Filler

Shane Van Boening vs Bahram Lotfy

Table 2 – Live on Matchroom Pool YouTube 

Darren Appleton vs Tomasz Kaplan

Joshua Filler vs Sanjin Pehlivanovic

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

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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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Dynamic Billard Lasko Open – Day One Complete

Chris Melling

Day one is complete at the Dynamic Billiard Laško Open as a whopping 215 matches took place across 28 tables in double elimination play. With a big field of 217 players gathered in Slovenia, the play was unrelenting as stars of the game, seasoned pros and young up-and-comers battled to avoid an early trip to the one loss side.

An opening match defeat generally means a minimum of a further six wins to reach the last 32 single elimination stage, while staying on the winners’ side throughout means that only three victories are needed to reach a similar stage.

Hosted by the smart Hotel Thermana Park, there were a few big names that succumbed on the opening day. English duo of Chris Melling and Darren Appleton both lost; to Spain’s evergreen David Alcaide and rising Polish star Daniel Maciol respectively, which puts them both under pressure on day two. Former Euro Tour winner, Finland’s Petri Makkonen, also fell early, losing 9-8 to young Greek player Nick Chatoupis. The Finn bounced back winning his next match but has it all to do on Sunday.

Petri Makkonen

The seasoned Polish duo of Karol Skowerski and Mateusz Sniegocki also suffered defeats. Wiktor Zielinski, winner of the last Euro Tour event – in Treviso last November – was beaten 9-2 in a shock upset by fellow countryman Kamil Szaszor. 2021 Euro Tour finalist and European Under 21 Champion Aleksa Pecelj of Croatia also lost his opener and will have it all to do on Sunday.

On the winners’ side, most of the big names here in Lasko progressed without a stutter including Joshua Filler, Eklent Kaci, Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz, and Alexander Kazakis. Play gets underway in earnest on Sunday morning as the field play down to the final 16 competitors.

The tournament concludes on Monday 28th February, starting at the round of 16 and playing down to the championship match. This is a new time slot for the tour, made to accommodate a live TV broadcast, initiated for 2022.

This the first of six events in the 2022 Dynamic Billiard Euro Tour series and players battle for Tour ranking points, as well as world ranking points for the newly implemented system operated by Matchroom Sport.

All the matches can be viewed live at www.kozoom.com
Results, live scoring and draw are available at www.epbf.com

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Draw Made For World Pool Masters

The draw for the World Pool Masters has been made, with defending champion David Alcaide set to begin his defense against either Billy Thorpe or Skyler Woodward in the event, which runs from May 22-25 at Europa Point Sports Complex, Gibraltar.

The all-American clash between Thorpe and Woodward was the standout match from the preliminary round draw, and the pair, currently representing USA in the World Cup of Pool, know the defending champion lies in wait in the last 16.

Alcaide and the top 7 players on the Matchroom Pool World Ranking were seeded through to the last 16, while the remaining 16 players in the field will battle it out in the preliminary round.

Other fixtures include Women’s World Champion Kelly Fisher against Justin Sajich, with the winner set to face Alex Kazakis in the last 16. World Champion Fedor Gorst will face either Shane Van Boening or debutant Jakub Koniar of Slovakia.

Albanian Masters rookie Max Lechner will meet either Mieszko Fortunski or Kristina Tkach, while Mosconi Cup MVP Jayson Shaw will face either Niels Feijen or Jeffrey De Luna.

The World Pool Masters begins on Saturday, May 22 and will be broadcast globally, including on Sky Sports, DAZN and Matchroom.Live. All matches are race to 7, winner breaks, except the final, which will be a race to 9.

Alcaide won the 2019 Masters in dramatic fashion with a memorable up-table bank to make the winning 9 at hill-hill against Kazakis, who he could meet in this year’s quarter-finals.

The World Pool Masters marks the return of spectators to Matchroom Pool Series events. Tickets are available exclusive to residents of Gibraltar via BuyTickets.gi. The full match schedule can be found at MatchroomPool.com.

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

WORLD POOL MASTERS DRAW

LAST 16 MATCHES

David Alcaide vs. Billy Thorpe/Skyler Woodward
Alexander Kazakis vs. Kelly Fisher/Justin Sajich

Naoyuki Oi vs. Eklent Kaci/Petri Makkonen
Jayson Shaw vs. Niels Feijen/Jeffrey De Luna

Fedor Gorst vs. Shane van Boening/Jakub Koniar
Max Lechner vs. Mieszko Fortunksi/Kristina Tkach

Joshua Filler vs. Chris Melling/Sanjin Pehlivanovic
Albin Ouschan vs. Denis Grabe/Roberto Gomez

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.

Historic Dannish Win As Netherlands & Finland Advance At World Cup Of Pool

ROUND 1

Netherlands 7-4 Bosnia and Herzegovina
Finland 7-0 Iceland
France 2-7 Denmark

Denmark recorded their first ever World Cup of Pool victory, beating France 7-2 at Stadium MK, Milton Keynes on Monday, while there were also wins for Netherlands and Finland.

The Dutch duo of Niels Feijen and Marc Bijsterbosch used their tournament experience to overcome an impressive pairing of Sanjin Pehlivanovich and Ajdin Piknjac as Bosnia and Herzegovina made their World Cup debut. There was a debut too for Iceland, but they struggled at the table against Finish pair Petri Makkonen and Casper Matikainen, who recorded a 7-0 whitewash win.

Bosnia and Herzegovina gave a good account of themselves and had the session’s opening match level at 3-3. But Netherlands’ class and experience showed as they moved 5-3 ahead. Their opponents had a chance to pull one back when Pehlivanovich missed a 9, but Feijen cut it too thin, allowing Ajdin Piknjac to half the deficit.  However, that was the last frame they would win as Feijen and Bijsterbosch made balls when it mattered to advance to round two.

“What a relief,” said Bijsterbosch. “We waited a few days for the match so I am very happy with the result. “We have to keep moving but we are playing confidently and we grinding out the win.”

Feijen added: “These races to 7s with the brutal winner breaks and the table playing bouncy, it is hard to control the cue ball but we did really well, stuck to our guns and pulled out the win. These early rounds, I don’t think there are any favourites. In the end it could come down to experience and we have been to the semis, been to the quarters, and that can help carry you through.”

Netherlands will meet Finland tomorrow afternoon after a crushing 7-0 victory over Iceland for Petri Makkonen and Casper Matikainen. The unrelated Zophonias and Magnus Arnason struggled when they did get chances, but their table time was limited as Makkonen and debutant Matikainen closed out the first whitewash of the tournament.

“It was a good start with a good win, we didn’t do much wrong and we are feeling good,” said Makkonen.

Matikainen added: “I didn’t play too well this match but it is good to get the win. Playing Predator Championship League Pool helped me get used to the arena, it was my first time in a Matchroom event, and now I know what to expect.”

The session closed out with an impressive World Cup debut from Mickey Krause, who partnered Bahram Lotfy for Denmark. They played France (Alex Montpellier & Alain Da Costa), who were late replacements for Albania. Krause, a 20-year-old from Copenhagen, and partner Lotfy opened up a 4-0 lead before France got on the board. It was the first of only two racks for France, however, as Denmark made light work of the match and will face either Spain or Italy in the next round on Wednesday.

Round one continues on Monday evening at 5:30pm UK time with Spain vs. Italy, Germany vs. Lithuania and Poland vs. Kuwait. 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.

Filler Falls in Dramatic Upset, while Van Boening Also Crashes Out

Finland’s Casper Matikainen takes down the defending champion in wild day in Doha as 32 players set for a sprint to the World 9-ball crown.

 

Casper Matikainen

Finland’s Casper Matikainen came into his round of 64 match at the World 9-ball Championship today versus the defending champion and world number 1 Joshua Filler feeling relaxed and ready for battle. He figured the German great would bring his usual fire, but he also knew that Filler might also take his eye off the proverbial ball. After all, the 23 year old Finn wasn’t exactly the most feared name in a field of absolute monsters.

So even when the self-described “King” of pool jumped out to a 4-1 lead, Matikainen never lost hope, as Filler had gotten a few lucky rolls and wasn’t playing all that great, while the Finn had a few rolls go against him.

The mental strategy soon started to bear fruit for the cool-headed blonde. Slowly, and increasingly surely, Matikainen crawled even, and then took the lead while at the same time Filler started to get sloppy, lose focus and even showed some signs of panic. From 4-1 down Matikainen calmly won 9 out of the next ten frames.  After a brief hiccup on the hill that allowed Filler to claim two quick racks, the steady Finn held his nerve and closed out the biggest shock of the tournament so far, an 11-7 upset of the defending champion.

“He’s the world champion and he’s playing and I’m not there in the big tournaments and maybe he’s thinking it’s an easy win,” the 22 year old Matikainen said afterward.  “I felt that Joshua had the pressure because he’s the world champion and I was really relaxed at the table and that helped me and I just got it done.”

Matikainen’s massive win was but one huge result on a dramatic day in Doha that saw some of pool’s biggest names dumped out, while others were taken to the absolute limits. With the field now down to the final 32, the next two days promises to be one of the most exciting and fascinating Battle Royale’s of 9-ball we’ve seen in years.

America’s Shane Van Boening had come to Doha a heavy favorite this year and for good reason. His last three starts here ended with two runner ups and a spot in the semis last year. But several early mistakes against Taiwan’s Liu Ri Teng was all it took for the Taiwanese to grab a commanding lead at 10-4. The American mounted a valiant fight back, but the alternate break format meant the hole was too deep. Liu sent Van Boening packing in the round of 64 with a humbling 11-8 defeat.

After his runner up finish at the US Open in Las Vegas last April, former champion Wu Jiaqing figured to go far here in Doha. But Wu came up against fellow compatriot Xu Xiaocong, who is one of a slew of quality young talents coming out of China. Xu has impressed all week here and  against Wu he turned his game up several notches, crushing the former Boy Wonder 11-5.

The Taiwanese are almost sure to have one, possibly two players in the semis after tomorrow as Team Taipei looked absolutely marvelous today. It isn’t easy picking a favorite out of these world beaters but World 10-ball Champion Ko Ping Chung would probably be at the top of most punters betting sheets.  The slightly built and painfully shy 22 year old is clearly at the top of his game but he even he barely escaped in a harrowing match against Hungary’s talented Oliver Szolnoki.

Szolnoki, another bright European prospect, played the match of his young career and had “Little” Ko on the ropes, shooting out to a 7-3, then 8-5 lead. The fresh-faced Hungarian reached the hill first, but Ko then displayed the courage and guts that only champions can pull off.  In a nervy and tense sudden death rack, the Taiwanese made a series of surreal pressure shots to eek out the victory.

Little Ko’s older brother and two-time former world champion Pin Yi also won today, easily defeating Japan’s Yukio Akagariyama, 11-5. Fellow Taiwanese Chang Jung Lin, Chang Yu Lung, Lin Wu Kun and Kevin Chang all won their round of 64 matches today. In all seven Taiwanese made it through to the round of 32.

2016 World 9-ball champion Albin Ouschan of Austria looks to be in very fine form this year, as he easily defeated Taiwan’s Lin Ta Li 11-5.  Fellow Austrian Max Lechner continued his rise this year with an 11-4 win over Lithuania’s Pijus Labutis.

The Russian contingent also put in solid performances today. Veteran Ruslan Chinakhov took down American Corey Duel 11-3, while youngster Fedor Gorst stayed alive with an 11-8 win over Slovakia’s Jakub Koniar.

2012 World 9-ball Champion Darren Appleton has been quietly playing himself back into game shape over the last few months and his solid victory today over Albanian star and European Mosconi team member Eklent Kaci could be a portent for the rest of the field. The Englishman battled back from a 4-0 deficit, and then turned the screws on the Albanian for a quality 11-6 win. In his remarkable heyday from 2008 to 2015, Appleton famously grinded out championships by the truckload and that bulldog mentality definitely was on display this afternoon.

The Philippines had only three players in the final 64 but all three made it through today. 2017 World 9-ball champion Carlo Biado got taken to the limit by Qatari veteran Bashar Hussein, before breaking and running the last rack for an 11-10 win. Also winning today for the Team Pinoy were Johann Chua and Jeffrey Ignacio.

The Polish contingent has been getting stronger by the year and they showed their quality today with three of their stars pushing through to the final 32. Mieszko Fortunski, Wojciech Szewczyk, and Mateusz Sniegocki all won handily.

Also advancing today were the USA’s Billy Thorpe, Singapore’s Aloysius Yapp, China’s Liu Haitao, Greece’s Alexander Kazakis, Spain’s Francisco Sanchez Ruiz, Estonia’s Dennis Grabe, England’s Chris Melling, Canada’s Alex Pagulayan, Qatar’s Waleed Majid, Vietnam’s Do The Kien, and Hong Kong’s young upstart Yip Kin Ling.

The penultimate day of the World 9-ball championship will be extremely busy as the field will be whittled down to the final four at the end of the days’ action.

Play on day 3, Monday, Dec. 16th will begin at 10am Doha time(GMT +3). All matches will be single elimination knockout race to 11, alternate break.

The winner of the 2019 World 9-ball Championship will receive $30,000. The total prize fund is $150,00.

*The 2019 WPA World 9-ball Championship takes place at the Qatar Billiards and Snooker Federation in Doha, Qatar from December 10-17, 2019. The event is hosted by The Qatar Billiard and Snooker Federation(QBSF), and is sanctioned by the World Pool Billiard Association, the governing body of the sport of pool.

Fans around the world will be able to view live scoring, results, brackets and live streaming of many of the matches via the QBSF’s free live streaming platform at esnooker.pl.  Multiple tables will be available to view online at no charge to the public.

Results Final 64

Casper Matikainen(FIN) 11 – 7 Joshua Filler(GER)
Yip Kin Ling(HKG) 11 – 5 John Morra(CAN)

Albin Ouschan(AUT) 11 – 5 Lin Ta Li(TPE)
Denis Grabe(EST) 11 – 8 Marc Bijsterbosch(NED)

Jung Lin Chang(TPE) 11 – 9 Dang Jinhu(CHN)
Mieszko Fortunski(POL) 11 – 8 Thorsten Hohmann(GER)

Francisco Sanchez Ruiz(ESP) 11 – 6 Konrad Juszczyszyn(POL)
Xu Xiaocong(CHN) 11 – 5 Wu Jiaqing(CHN)

Alexander Kazakis(GRE) 11 – 8 Radoslaw Babica(POL)
Liu Haitao(CHN) 11 – 9  Jalal Al Sarisi (VEN)

Naoyuki Oi(JPN) 11 – 7 Petri Makkonen(FIN)
Johann Chua(PHL) 11 – 5 Enrique Rojas(CHL)

Alex Pagulayan(CAN) 11 – 3 Karol Skowerski(POL)
Chang Yu Lung(TPE) 11 – 9 Masato Yoshioka(JPN)

Billy Thorpe(USA) 11 – 6 Kong Dejing(CHN)
Carlo Biado(PHL) 11 – 10 Bashar Hussain(QAT)

Chung Ko Ping(TPE) 11 – 10  Oliver Szolnoki(HUN)
Lin Wu Kun(TPE) 11 – 7 Damianos Giallourakis(GRE)

Maximilian Lechner(AUT) 11 – 4 Pijus Labutis(LTH)
Ruslan Chinakhov(RUS)  11 – 3 Corey Duel(USA)

Chris Melling(ENG)  11 – 7 Mohammad Berjaoui(LEB)
Do The Kien(VET) 11 – 5 David Alcaide(ESP)

Wojciech Szewczyk(POL) 11 – 6 Jang Moonseok(KOR)
Waleed Majid(QAT) 11 – 10 Ralf Souquet(GER)

Pin Yi Ko(TPE) 11 – 5 Yukio Akagariyama(JPN)
Jeffrey Ignacio(PHL) 11 – 6 Stephen Holem(CAN)

Aloysius Yapp(SIN) 11 – 9  Xue Zhenqi(CHN)
Darren Appleton(ENG) 11 – 6 Eklent Kaci(ALB)

Fedor Gorst(RUS) 11 – 8 Jakub Koniar(SVK)
Yu Hsuan Cheng(TPE) 11 – 10 Tomasz Kaplan(POL)

Mateusz Sniegocki(POL) 11 – 7 Ivar Saris(NED)
Liu Ri Teng(TPE) 11 – 8 Shane Van Boening(USA)

One loss side group matches
Winner moves on to final 64 KO stage. Loser is out

Group 1
Mateusz Sniegocki(POL) 9 – 4 Hasan Hwaidi(IRQ)
Bashar Hussain(QAT) 9 – 6 Jerico Bonus(PHL)

Group 2
Fedor Gorst(RUS) 9 – 2 Mohammad Soufi(SYR)
Ruslan Chinakhov(RUS) 9 – 3 Kong Bu Hong(HKG)

Group 3
Dang Jinhu(CHN) 9 – 1 Gerson Martinez(PER)
Wu Jiaqing(CHN) 9 – 3 Saki Kanatlar(TRK)

Group 4
Jalal Al Sarisi(VEN) 9 – 8 Matt Edwards(NZL)
Thorsten Hohmann(GER) 9 – 1 Marc Vidal(ESP)

Group 5
Wojciech Szewczyk(POL) 9 – 8 Mohammad Al Amin(BAN)
Waleed Majid(QAT) 9 – 5 Woo Seung Ryu(KOR)

Group 6
Do The Kiem(VET)  9 – 6 Ali Alobaidli(QAT)
Tomasz Kaplan(POL) 9 – 4 Ricky Yang(IND)

Group 7
Radoslaw Babica(POL) 9 – 6 Abdulatif Alfawal(QAT)
Liu Ri Teng(TPE) 9 – 1 Nadim Okbani(ALG)

Group 8
Carlo Biado(PHL) 9 – 4 Hassan Shahada(JOR)
Lin Ta Li(TPE) 9 – 6 Abdullah Alyusef(KUW)

Group 9
Stephen Holem(CAN) 9 – 4 Khaled Alghamdi(KSR)
Casper Matikainen(FIN) 9 – 5 Phone Myint Kyaw(MYR)

Group 10
Mohammad Berjaoui(LEB) 9 – 5 Max Eberle(USA)
Yukio Akagariyama(JPN) 9 – 4 Ali Maghsoud(IRA)

Group 11
Karol Slowerski(POL) 9 – 4 Hunter Lombardo(USA)
Eklent Kaci(ALB)  9 – 3 Ahmad Aldelaimi(KUW)

Group 12
Marc Bijsterbosch(NED) 9 – 5  Niels Feijen(NED)
Daminanos Giallourakis(GRE)  9 – 3 Abdullah Alshammari(KSR)

Group 13
Masato Yoshioka(JPN) 9 – 4 Clark Sullivan(NZE)
Xue Zhenqi(CHN) 9 – 7 Luis Lemus(GTM)

Group 14
Darren Appleton(ENG) 9 – 6 Richard Halliday(RSA)
Jakub Koniar(SLV) 9 – 3 Fayaz Hussain(MAL)

Group 15
Jang Moonseok(KOR) 9 – 2 Robbie Capito(HKG)
Corey Duel(USA) 9 – 8 Wang Can(CHN)

Group 16
Xu Xiaocong(CHN) 9 – 0 Mohamed El Raousti(ALG)
Lin Wu Kun(TPE) 9 – 3 Riccardo Sini(ITA)