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Shannon “The Cannon” goes undefeated to win World Cup Billiards Open in Greenville, SC

Shannon Daulton, James Moore (TD), Han Choi and Mike Davis

They were a couple of marquee names in a field of relative unknowns. The $1,380-added World Cup Billiards Open in Greenville, SC, held over the weekend of July 26-27, drew 55 entrants, and to nobody's surprise, Shannon Daulton and Mike Davis faced each other twice; in the hot seat match and finals. Shannon "The Cannon" took both matches to claim the event title, undefeated. Normally to be found tour directing his great Southern Billiard Tour, it was only his third appearance this year in a tournament event (Derby City in January and the Smoky Mountain Shootout in April). 
Little had been seen of Mike Davis since he announced his retirement just prior to the 2013 George "Ginky" Sansouci Memorial Tournament in 2013. He came out of that retirement just long enough to win that Ginky Memorial, defeating Dennis Hatch in the finals. Davis settled down (so to speak) to become a time-share salesman in Florida, only to discover that he wasn't suited for the job. Just recently, he gave it up, and returned to the road, looking to get back into the game.
"It just wasn't for me," he said of his short-lived career as a salesman, "so I'm playing pool again for now."
Though he'd not announced any official retirement, Daulton, too, encountered aspects of getting back into the saddle on his way to this most recent victory at the World Cup Billiards Open. 
"It's very difficult," he said of getting back to the tables as a competitor. "The first day of this one, I was in survival mode. I did a tremendous amount of practicing in my teenage years, and I have to say that I've been very lucky and blessed to be able to survive off whatever natural talent I have when I get into something like this."
According to Daulton, about 90% of the players in this World Cup Billiards Open were people who play on his tour, throughout the year, including a couple that he beat on the way to the hot seat and finals; B.J. Hucks and Wendell Thompkins. "The Cannon" also took down John Jones and found himself in a winners' side semifinal against Travis Dorn. Davis, in the meantime, was facing Andy Twitchen. Daulton got into the hot seat match 11-7 over Dorn and was met by Davis, who'd sent Twitchen to the losers' bracket 11-6. Daulton took the first of two against Davis 11-6 and sat in the hot seat waiting for his return.
"He scratched once on the break," said Davis, "and that was the only mistake he made in that hot seat match."
Dorn and Twitchen moved to the loss side and faced Corey Morphew and Michael Clay, who handed them their second straight defeat; Morphew surviving a double hill match against Dorn, Clay downing Twitchen 7-4. Morphew eliminated Clay 7-3 in the quarterfinals, but was himself eliminated by Davis 7-4 in the semifinals.
From Davis' perspective, punctuating the difficulty of accomplishing pool's version of "climbing back into the saddle," Daulton took an early 6-0 lead against him in the finals.
"That's the type of game I was capable of," said Davis, "but I haven't really played quite up to that standard for a while."
That said, though Daulton went on to win, he won only five of the next 11 games. If they'd cleared the scoreboard with Daulton up 6-0, Davis would have won the subsequent race to 6, on the hill. As it was, Daulton stayed on top and completed his undefeated run to claim his first event title of the year.
Pool rooms interested in having their events become part of the Simonis Cloth Classic Tour, can reach tour representatives at 1-800-200-POOL.

Kendrick thwarts loss-side challenge by Dorn to win his first GSBT stop

Shannon, Chris Kendrick, Travis Dorn, and Joel Caine

Chris Kendrick went undefeated on the Great Southern Billiard Tour stop on the weekend of March 17-18, but not before being challenged in the finals by Travis Dorn, who won seven on the loss side to meet him in those finals. It was Kendrick’s first win on the GSBT and the first appearance in the finals for both he and Dorn. The $1,500-added event drew 53 entrants to Raisin’ Caine’s in Inman, SC.

From among the winners’ side final four, Kendrick defeated Josh Newman 7-6 (Newman going to 10), while Steve Holman was busy sending Shonte Barnes west 7-5. Kendrick got into the hot seat with a 7-2 and waited on Dorn.

With two loss-side matches chalked up already, Dorn defeated Danny Turner 9-1 and Steve Cox 9-3 to meet up with Newman. Barnes drew Justin Mathis, who’d defeated Jake Weaver 7-5 (Weaver had been responsible for sending Dorn to the loss side) and Brandon Blackburn 7-4. Dorn downed Newman 9-6 to move into the quarterfinals against Mathis, who’d shut out Barnes.

Dorn chalked up his seventh and final victory with a 9-6 defeat of Holman in the semifinals. Kendrick completed his undefeated journey through the field of 53 with a 7-3 win in the opening set of a true double elimination final.

Tour Director Shannon Daulton thanked Joel Caine and his staff at Raisin’ Caine’s for their hospitality, as well as sponsors Andy Gilbert Custom Cues, Nick Varner Cues and Cases, Mike Davis Exterminating, Tiger Products and Delta-13 racks. Wishes for a speedy recovery were extended (and supplemented by all of us here at AZBilliards) to his co-director and personal partner, Marge Daulton, who is recovering from surgery at home, where she is expected to be for the next few weeks.