USA and Korea Dominate Day 1 of King and Queen of Carom

Seoul,Korea- The American ladies surprised the Korean carom fans by dominating the opening day or the Queen of Carom. Korean American Jeanette Lee cruised through Guam's Shanelle Loraine 7-1 her opening match, avenging her loss to Loraine the day before in the World Pool Cup womens 9-Ball event. Tiffany Nelson, who has never played 3-Cushion, controlled Bo Ram Cha of Korea 7-4. Monica Webb played a superb match against Jasmin Ouschan with a 7-2 win running a 4,2 and 1 in 5 innings. Lee then kept her fire going with a dominant 7-2 win over Nelson to put her in the finals. Yu Ram Cha, favorite to win the event and coached by some of the top Korean coaches in carom, was upset 7-6 in a shocking match to Japan's Miyuki Sakai . Sakai misplayed her shot at 6-6 and got a lucky kiss that sent her balls wild and accidentally made a 3 cushion carom to win 7-6. Later Sakai fell to Webb's unexpected carom skills 7-2.

"I love 3 cushion billiards. I practice it back home in Atlanta and I'm pretty decent." said Monica Webb, currently the #1 ranked USA player on the WPBA Tour. "When Dragon Promotions asked if I was interested in playing carom in Korea, I jumped at the offer!"

"I never practiced one shot of 3 cushion until 5 minutes before my match." said the calm and cool Tiffany Nelson after her first round win over Korea's Bo Ram Cha.

On the King of Carom side of the event, the Korean men took over as Sung Wook Choi defeated Mika Immonen 15-12. Immonen was down 11-3 but made a late charge and got the match to 12-11 before a costly miscue on an easy billiard would have tied the match.

"At least I didn't make a fool out of myself and showed I can play a little."said Immonen smiling. Immonen sometime frequents Carom Cafe in NY and plays often with top carom players.

Then Pil Hyun Cho upset #2 Japanese Carom player O Takeshima 15-12. The best played match of the day however belonged to Rodney Morris and Shin Young Park . Morris opened with a run of 4 off the break. Park answered with a 2. Morris then ran a 3, later another 3, and a 1 but Park traded back and forth with him with his own runs of 3,4, and later a 5. Morris smooth and quick style of play transitioned over to carom from pool quite naturally. The match ended with the more experienced Park winning 15-11, but left the fans admiring Morris' raw talent with the cue.

"I've never played a game of 3 cushion in my life. But it's been incredible watching some of these guys like Park and Sayginer. Makes me want to improve my kicking skills even further for 9-Ball." said Morris about his experience playing in the King of Carom.

"Rodney's a natural. I don't think it matters what game he has to play, he's going to do well and learn fast. I knew he would be fine because his rail knowledge is so strong in pool. " said Charlie Williams on his invite to Morris for the event. "Just imagine if he actually played a few games before the event!"

Semih Sayginer, former 4x 3Cushion Player of the Year, demolished Danny Harriman 15-5. Harriman, a proficient 3Cushion player, couldn't get anything going. "To be honest, I was a little star struck playing this guy. He's one of my heroes." commented Harriman. "But I'd like to try him on a pool table!"

In the semi-finals Koreans Park and Choi battled it out with Park coming on top 15-10. Cho of Korea gave Sayginer a scare as Cho led the match from beginning to near the end. They battled back and forth for the final points with Semih finally taking the lead at 14-11. Cho then made it 14-13 and was making the point to tie the match hill-hill when 12 inches before the final hit his ball was kissed out saving Semih and letting him make the final point 15-13.

"This is a little dangerous format for me, but it's good for TV and for attracting new audiences. It's exciting!" said Sayginer after his close call.

Sayginer and Jeanette Lee then performed a show with special TV celebrity guest Charce, a famous model and comedian. With Semih coaching him, Charce defeated Lee in a race to 5 points. Of course with the charismatic Lee, showman Semih, and comedian Charce, it made to be a very fun show.

The matches are aired on XTM, a total entertainment network covering movies, comedies, and sports.

Tomorrow will be the finals with Sayginer playing Park and then Lee versus Webb to determine the King and Queen of Carom.