World Cup of Pool Day One – Two hill-hill thrillers liven up Manila!


Round 1 Results
Canada 8-7 Serbia
USA 8-7 India
THERE WAS plenty of excitement and drama at Robinsons Place, Manila as action went down to the wire in both late afternoon matches at the World Cup of Pool.
First the Canadian team of transplanted Filipino Alex Pagulayan and John Morra snatched it out the bag against Sweden and the USA, trailing throughout against India reversed the arrears in the home stretch to steal the win.
It was Raj Hundal and Amar Kang who looked a steady ship as they came in as under dogs against their more titled opponents. They lead 1-0, 2-1, 4-2 and 5-4 before the US pair took stock of the situation and shot into a 6-5 lead.
Morris thought he had put his team on the hill with a golden break but looked crestfallen when the referee Nigel Rees ruled it a foul break when the requisite number of balls failed to cross the head string. Both sides had chances at the final 9 before Kang downed it to level things.
Both teams then had disastrous breaks; Van Boening delivered a dry one and India cleared, and then Kang downed two balls but the third didn’t play ball and the Americans took the rack for hill-hill.
India had a chance but in the end it was a missed 3 ball from Hundal that proved their undoing and the American pair won and now face Austria in the next round.
The 2012 World Cup of Pool runs from Tuesday September 4 to Sunday, September 9 at Robinson’s Place, Ermita, Manila.  Once again the total prize fund is US$250,000 with $60,000 going to the eventual champions. Tickets for the extravaganza will be available at the venue on the day of play but with plentiful balconies offering superb views of the playing arena, organisers are anticipating crowds in the thousands rather than hundreds.
The Swedish pair of Marcus Chamat and Andreas Gerwen were similar victims as they succumbed at the final hurdle to Canada’s John Morra and Alex Pagulayan – the 2004 World Pool Champion.
The Swedes trailed 7-4 and looked in dire straits but clawed their way back and even included a Chamat golden break!
At 7-7 and breaking they were suddenly favourites but the rack descended into a safety battle before the Canadians found a way through and ran out for victory. They will now play Philippines B or Hong Kong.
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