Banks and Big Foot Kick Off The Derby

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Diamond BIG Foot Challenge

The Accu-Stats Arena Big Foot opening act cast Mosconi Cup teamster, Styler Woodward against Oklahoman John Gabriel. John, whose home room is the infamous McGoo’s, has a reputation as a formidable Diamond bar box competitor. There’s a Diamond 10 foot nearby, too. He, admittedly, didn’t attend with expectations of winning but more for the experience of being pitted against the big boys on Big Foot.

Sky’s start was a little slow. It was around 6 apeice when he decided to stop the rot. His concentration kicked in and off he ran to the finish line.

The most dramatic and eagerly anticipated match was with fellow Filipinos Lee Vann Corteza and Johann Chua.

Lee Vann, winner of the 2013 DCC 9-Ball event, was the 10-Ball runner-up to Van Boening in ’15 so, he knew his way around BIG Foot.

This was Johann’s first trip to the US. He’s 24 years young and has been playing since he was 13. How would he perform, in unknown territory, with his first Stateside, professional encounter under the heat of the Accu-Stats lights?

His only battleground was the Phillipines where recently he had beaten both Orcollo and Biado in $10K challenge matches. Lee wasn’t impressed and soon took an early 4-1 lead. Chua, as he’s called, caught a gear and masterfully, and unemotionally, leapt to 7-4.

Then, they parried until Corteza got inspired and was ahead 10-8. Breaking, and making balls, the last orb rolling snookered him for the one. He pushed.

Deftly, Chau sent the cue ball on a slow drag 3/4 the length of the table until it deflected inches off the one to nestle underneath the 9. Corteza was stuck. He missed the kick yet still on the hill at 10-9. Breaking, Johann’s eyes glistened with excitement. There was a confidence in his stroke; he could do this. About 8 strokes later, it’s hill-hill.

The balls burst open and as whitey headed for the side pocket it was intercepted, only to be kicked straight into the upper corner pocket.

Now it’a Corteza’s eyes that are glistening. How many times had he been here, needing that one last rack? It’s a walk in the park. Calmly methodically, he ambled around the table. Like a sniper the balls were picked off to fall into their designated pockets. Slumped in his seat, resignation written all over his face, Chua knew it was over. He’d grown up watching, learning, as Lee administered similar death blows time and time again.

The evening session was one of pool’s all time great rivalries: Van Boening and Orcollo. The Accu-Stats’ catalog is rife with DVDs of these two going head to head. Whose turn was it to win tonight?

In the opening racks it was all Shane…until he hooked himself. What looked like a dominating 7-3 lead, with Shane breaking, was decimated to 6-4. The difference is huge, especially, as Dennis was now breaking. Van Boening’s snookering, overrun cue ball turned the tide of the match. At every opportunity, the balls punished him. It was especially evident when, as aggressive as ever, he made a superb, thinly cut combination only to be snookered, again. Shane grimaced for the remainder of the games when, at 8, Dennis sat atop the hill. It was there he stumbled. He, hung the case 10-ball!

Shane’s big break spread the balls like butter on bread. He ran until, with only 4 balls left on the table, he committed the ultimate sin; Playing shape, he landed on the wrong side of the object ball, the final blow to one of his more frustrating matches in recent memory.

Dennis, quietly, avenged their 2016 BIG Foot encounter.

Jayson Shaw vs. Nick Ekonomopoulos was one of the most powerful, error free, manifestations of pure pool prowess ever recorded. Shaw, still high from his well deserved AZ Billiards Player of the Year award, compounded by his 5th Turning Stone Victory in 6 years, had the new Nick the Greek 10-0 after delivering an unconcievable Accu-Stats Total Performance Average (TPA) of .989. A .989 TPA on a 9-Foot is an exemplary accomplishment but, on BIG Foot, it’s extraordinary.

His effortless stroll around the table was facilitated by a play-for-shape-on-the-one-ball that had it sit near the top corner pocket after most of his blistering break shots. His taming of the one ball contributed to the mighty 6 pack that had Nick nailed to his chair, powerless.

At 10-0 after Jayson’s break, the one ball, as directed, waited patiently near the corner pocket. Alas, no balls had fallen. Nick, hypnotized now by Jayson’s display, was numb: He missed the dangling orb! Shaw was so shocked he fumbled shape on the 2. (Down goes that TPA) He attempted a low-percentage carom off the 6, “I should have played safe,” he later confessed, and Nick, somewhat composed, saved the whitewash.

Needless to say, to no avail. Jayson gently coached an early combo to seal his unsparing victory and verify his reputation as a true marvel in rotation games.

Matches continue on Saturday:
1pm: Karl Boyes vs. Thorsten Hohmann
3:30: Alex Pagulayan vs. Alex Kazakis
7pm: Fedor Gorst vs. Darren Appleton
9:30 Carlo Biado vs. Ruslan Chinakov

It’s all LIVE from the Accu-Stats Arena. View at

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第19屆德比城經典賽在美國印第安那州的Horseshoe Southern Indiana Resort and Casino結束了第一天的賽程。在第一天所進行的賽程中,10尺10號球挑戰賽其中一場最引人注目及令人期待的比賽在兩位菲律賓選手Johann Chua和Lee Vann Corteza之間上演。

24歲的Johann Chua從13歲開始打台球,年輕的Johann雖以征戰如男子九球世錦賽、中國公開賽在內世界級比賽多年,但此次是Johann第一次的美國行。

而對於他的對手,Corteza在2013年拿下過德比城9球冠軍及2015年在10尺挑戰賽決賽中輸給Van Boening獲得亞軍。Corteza最近則在10K挑戰賽中分別擊敗另外兩位菲律賓好手Dennis Orcollo與Carlo Biado。


Original report from David Thomson/ on AZB