World Pool Championship Announces Format Change

MATCHROOM Sport can announce they will be changing the format for the opening round of the 2007 Philippines World Pool Championship.

Double elimination play will be introduced for the first time in the nine years that the UK-based sports promotion company has been promoting the event.

Once again there will be 128 players competing in the tournament, which will be held in Manila from November 3 to November 11, and everyone will be aiming to follow in the footsteps of 2006 winner Ronnie Alcano.

However, the old round-robin format has been replaced by a first round consisting of 16 groups of eight players, which will split the field from 128 to 64 competitors before the single-elimination knock-out phase.

The eight players in each group will play a total of 10 matches between them. Two successive wins will see them into the last 64 while two straight defeats will see them eliminated from the tournament.

The final set of matches in the group will feature players with one win and one defeat fighting it out to stay in the competition. All first round matches will be a race to nine racks with the winner breaking.

Each group will be played out over one day on two tables and the first round matches will be completed over four days from Saturday, November 3 to Tuesday, November 6.

From Wednesday, November 7, single elimination, straight knock-out matches will take place with the following duration:

Last 64 – race to 10, winner breaks

Last 32 – race to 10, winner breaks

Last 16 – race to 11, winner breaks

Quarter-finals – race to 11, winner breaks

Semi-finals – Race to 11, winner breaks

The Final – Race to 17, winner breaks

A Matchroom Sport spokesman said: “This change will mean that every single game will count and there will be no room for any player to take their foot off the pedal.

“We have consulted with the WPA to come up with a format that will liven up the first round of matches and generate more excitement for spectators, both in the arena and on TV.

“After the first four matches in each group, every game will either see a player go through or be dumped out the Championship and that can only be good for the competition.”

A sample first round group (consisting of eight players).

Match 1 - Player A v Player B
Match 2 - Player C v Player D
Match 3 - Player E v Player F
Match 4 - Player G v Player H

Match 5 - Winner of match 1 v winner of match 2 (the winner advances into last 64)
Match 6 - Winner of match 3 v winner of match 4 (the winner advances into last 64)

Match 7 - Loser of match 1 v loser of match 2 (the loser is eliminated)
Match 8 - Loser of match 3 v loser of match 4 (the loser is eliminated)

Match 9 - Winner of match 7 v loser of match 6 (winner advances, loser eliminated)
Match 10 - Winner of match 8 v loser of match 5 (winner advances, loser eliminated)