New York City, NY – Germany has now taken the World 14.1 Cup for a record 6 times when it’s favorite straight pool son defeated reigning champion Darren Appleton of England. In a re-match of 2013, the two best players with the best records in the event faced off for a second finals within 3 years.
Appleton had now made it to three consecutive finals of the World 14.1, a feat no one has done this millennium and several decades. Hohmann had made this an unprecedented 4th trip to the finals.
No player has won consecutive World 14.1 titles since the early 1980′s by Steve Mizerak. Appleton had the chance to be the first ever non-American repeat champion. And he had not lost a match in the event since the 2013 finals lost to Hohmann. On the other hand, Hohmann had never been beaten in the finals of the World 14.1 and a chance to break his own record of wins, getting closer to chasing Mosconi’s record of World 14.1 wins of seven. One way or another, history was destined to be broken.
The match started with Hohmann winning the lag and Appleton making the opening break. Facing a long, difficult shot to start, Hohmann fired it in with authority and started his run. Looking confident and playing with vigor, there was a murmur in the air that a new world record may be set. But at 50 balls, Hohmann abruptly missed an easy shot. But the opportunity to still break Appleton’s 200 ball record still existed.
Appleton was unable to capitalize and ran only a 30 ball run giving Hohmann another chance. This time, Hohmann went on a 126 ball run but again missed an easy shot. This would force a mandatory intermission of 30 minutes.
When Appleton returned, again he was unable to sustain a long run, but this was when the comedy of errors begin. Both players went into limbo unable to get through multiple racks. But at one point Hohmann sustained a seemingly insurmountable lead according to the current level of play. But Appleton seemed to have the momentum as Hohmann’sgame fell dramatically once he reached 200 points.
After 4 hours and 30 minutes of play, Appleton finally managed to level the match at 216 to 216. Appleton surpassed that with taking the lead for the first time and reached 232 to 216 before he missed.
Running a few balls, and then successfully making a good breakshot, Hohmann faced the last 5 open balls on the table for the victory. And then another error, he missed position. Now facing a long, difficult pot, Thorsten gave a slight sigh and took a hard look at deciding to go for the shot or play safe. The shot was a hard but make able cut. But if he missed, the cueball would break the rack wide open. But if he left an opportunity, Appleton could easily run the match out. Hohmann opted to end the championship right then and there and called the 5-ball. With the score at 299 and the World 14.1 in the balance, the shot had more pressure than anyone could imagine.
The 5-ball missed the target pocket by a diamond. The stack was split open like the red sea. Appleton would have his chance. If Darren would succeed in a 68 ball run, a mere morsel compared to what he has done so many times, then he would remain champion with an amazing 300-299 score. But it was not meant to be. The first shot he played resulted in the ball made, but also the cueball. Stunned, Appleton slowly went back to his chair and conceded the final shot to Hohmann. The match ended nearly 7 hours later.
Hohmann now took over and went on a run and eventually overtook the lead again, and then needing less than a rack, he shockingly missed once more leaving the door open for Appleton. Hohmann looked visibly dejected as he walked back to his seat, realizing he missed a golden opportunity to close out the finals. Now, he had to hope the reigning champion and 200 ball world record holder would not run a standard 68 balls.
Appleton looked ready for his chance. Then surprisingly, a miss. After gaining less than a rack of balls, Hohmann was back at the table needing only 13 balls to make history.
“I got unlucky a few times but so did Thorsten. Of course I’m disappointed of the result because I have been playing well all week. But Thorsten deserves it. He is the best straight pool player in the world”, said Appleton in the aftermath speech.
“Darren has proven he is one of the best in the world in just a few short years. His patterns are perfect now”, said Hohmann. When asked if he was chasing the World 14.1 record of 10 wins by Ralph Greenleaf, Hohmann simply answered,” I just love straight pool. I keep playing for that reason.”
Hohmann now surpasses Ray Martin and Mike Sigel in wins, and ties at 4th for all time World 14.1 wins with Luther Lassiter. In the new millenium and for non-American champions, Hohmann holds the record for most wins than any player.
世界上最為古老的撞球賽事，第2015 安迪盃世界14.1錦標賽落下帷幕。在此前已拿下過三次冠軍的德國名將Thorsten Hohmann在決賽中以300:244擊敗現今世界排名第二的英國名將Darren Appleton，贏得個人第四座14-1的冠軍。而Hohmann的這場勝利也寫下了德國選手在此項賽事中第六次奪冠的新紀錄。
最終決賽在Thorsten Hohmann與Darren Appleton之間上演。Appleton自從在2013年決賽中輸給Hohmann後，此前還從未輸掉過任何一場14-1的比賽，而這也是他連續三年打進到冠軍賽，這在過去的十多年裡還未有人達到過，而在早期1980年代的Steve Mizerak之後，還從未有選手連續贏得14-1冠軍，Appleton更有機會能成為第一位非美國籍成功衛冕冠軍的選手。Hohmann方面，則將第四度向決賽叩關，他還從未在14-1決賽中被擊敗過，有機會打破自己的紀錄，並將逐步追上Mosconi生涯七次冠軍的紀錄。無論是誰贏得最後勝利，歷史終將被打破。
Hohmann則說道: “Darren在短短幾年裡，已經證明了自己是世界上最好的球員之一。他現在打球的狀態節奏非常好。” 而當被問及如果能追平Ralph Greenleaf在14-1上的10冠紀錄時，Hohmann簡單的答道，”我熱愛14-1，喜歡持續進攻的感覺，那就是我喜愛的原因。”
Hohmann現在奪冠次數已超越Ray Martin及Mike Sigel，並與同為拿過四次冠軍的Luther Lassiter並列第四名。而Hohmann也保持著非美國籍球員奪冠最多次的紀錄。
Photos courtesy Eli Ceballos
CN by Alison Chang