Ralf Souquet Advances Via One of 12 Match-Deciding Shootouts As The Aramith Masters Goes Down To The Final 16
By Ted Lerner/WPS Media Officer
Photos By JP Parmentier/WPS
(New York City)–One of the unique new features of the World Pool Series is the implementation of the shootout to decide matches that end up tied with one rack left. The idea is to create excitement for fans, as each player is left with just one type of shot to make; 5 tries at a difficult full table cut on the 8-ball. It’s the ultimate pressure shot as players are forced to show full bottle and guts to try and advance.
If day 2 of the Aramith Masters was any indication, fans can expect plenty of full throttle drama to decide matches going forward as we enter the business end of this, the second leg of pool’s newest tour. 72 matches were played today, and a whopping 12 of them were decided by shootouts.
Three of those nerve rattling shootouts featured England’s Chris Melling, who seemed attracted to the cliff hanging drama like a bee to honey. Melling’s stroke is normally steadied and honed by years of playing snooker, but several times today he cracked under the weight of the moment. He won his first shootout, then lost his second, which sent him over to the losers side of the double elimination bracket. The third time he found himself staring down the Philippines Dennis Orcollo, with five cut shots on the 8-ball to decide who would move on to the final 16, and who would exit the tournament. Melling beat the Filipino four shots deep into sudden death to stay alive.
The day of drama started at 10am at Steinway Café-Billiards in the Queens section of New York City, with 90 players still battling it out. By the end of play near midnight, 16 players remained. All matches from here on in will now be single elimination, best of 3 sets, with each set being a race to 6. Final sets that are tied at 6-6 will now be decided by the dreaded shootout.
Not everyone bothered to leave their fate to the nerve jangling shootout. 20 year old American Billy Thorpe put in two solid performances today to stay undefeated and advance. The Dayton, Ohio native has lately given every indication that he intends to live up to the lofty expectations American pool fans are placing on his shoulders. He first beat England’s Mark Gray, 9-4, then came from 6-3 behind on the TV table to beat the Philippines Jeffrey De Luna, 9-7, to qualify for the final 16 round.
“I like playing from behind because it makes me focus even more,” Thorpe said afterward. “I just grind it out. That’s what I do. I like having that pressure. I’m here to show what I can do.”
Two-time World 9-ball Champion Thorsten Hohmann has looked the goods the last two days. The German won twice today including a 9-6 win over England’s Darren Appleton. Appleton was sent over to the losers bracket but eventually qualified for the final 16 with a scrappy 9-6 win over the Philippines Johann Chua.
The Philippines Roberto Gomez seems to want to live up to his “Superman” moniker as he put in two terrific performances Thursday. Gomez first beat Spain’s David Alcaide, 9-4, then took down red hot Jayson Shaw 9-6. Shaw, however, bounced back from the losers side with a fine 9-4 thumping of fellow Brit Karl Boyes to advance.
Greece’s Alexander Kazakis has been the most dominant player of the tournament so far, only conceding 7 racks over three matches. The young Greek qualified for the final 16 by beating England’s Raj Hundal, 9-4. Hundal then went to the cliff with fellow Englishman Mark Gray, and barely squeaked by, winning a thrilling shootout to advance to the final 16.
Estonia’s Dennis Grabe continued his run of putting in impressive performances in pool’s big events. The tall and quiet Grabe looked very strong with two victories today to move into the final 16, first beating Karl Boyes, 9-6, then defeating Carlo Biado, 9-7. Biado bounced back but barely, qualifying to the final 16 by beating American Shaun Wilkie in yes, you guessed it, a shootout.
German legend Ralf Souquet had a real slog today as he won three matches off the losers’ side to advance. Souquet, who recently won a Euro Tour event and seems to have rediscovered his infamous golden stroke, had to wait to the bitter end in his third match with American Josh Roberts. The two went to the hill, and, yes, the shootout, which Souquet handily won, to book a spot in the final 16.
The World Pool Series Aramith Masters continues Friday at Steinway Café-Billiards with the Final 16 single elimination, which begins at 12 noon, EST. By the end of the day, the field will be down to the final four. The Semis and Finals will be played on Saturday.
由奪下過多個世界冠軍的英國名將Darren Appleton於今年所創辦的全新巡迴系列賽事 “世界撞球系列賽 World Pool Series” 第二站繼續於位在紐約皇后區的Steinway Café-Billiards開賽，而此賽事2017年將共有四站，比賽項目皆為8號球。第二站的Aramith 大師賽第二天賽事繼續在上午10點登場，當日共進行了72場比賽，結束之時已將近午夜，其中有12場比賽最終由 ”點球大戰 Shotout” 分出勝負。
單就英國名將Chris Melling個人就歷經了三場的點球大戰。Melling在拿下第一次點球勝利之後，第二次並沒有順利贏下，這也讓他進入到敗部。在敗部中與Dennis Orcollo的比賽則成為了他的第三次的點球大戰，最終有驚無險的淘汰Dennis Orcollo擠身16強之列。
而美國本土年僅20歲小將Billy Thorpe首場比賽以9-4擊敗英國名將Mark Gray，第二場在主桌比賽，在6-3落後之下，最終以9-7逆轉擊敗菲律賓好手Jeffrey De Luna，連續拿下兩場比賽，以不敗之姿晉級16強。
奪下過兩次世錦賽9號球冠軍的德國名將Thorsten Hohmann同樣順利拿下兩場比賽，其中一場則是以9-6擊敗Darren Appleton，將他送進敗部。Appleton最終在敗部的最後一場比賽以9-6擊退了菲律賓年輕好手Johann Chua，取得16強門票。
另一位菲律賓的好手Roberto Gomez則表現相當出色。分別以9-4和9-6接連擊敗了西班牙名將David Alcaide及火紅的Jayson Shaw後，接著再以9-4擊敗曾拿下過8號球世界冠軍的英國名將Karl Boyes取得晉級。
希臘年輕好手Alexander Kazakis儼然成為目前為止主宰比賽的選手，在3場比賽中僅僅失掉7局。而Kazakis再以9-4擊敗英國的Raj Hundal。而Hundal則是在贏得了與同胞英國名將Mark Gray的點球大戰後，終而晉級。
愛沙尼亞名將Dennis Grabe則繼續了令人印象深刻的好表現。他在接連戰勝Karl Boyes (9-6)與Carlo Biado (9-7)後取得晉級。而Biado最終則是靠著在點球大戰中擊敗美國選手Shaun Wilkie驚險晉級。
最後德國傳奇名將Ralf Souquet第二天敗部中先拿下兩場比賽後，第三場比賽在通過與美國Josh Roberts的點球大戰後，已連續贏下三場比賽而取得晉級最終16強單敗賽。
FINAL 16 最後16強
Billy Thorpe (USA 美國) vs. Darren Appleton (GBR 英國)
Dennis Grabe (EST 愛沙尼亞) vs. Raj Hundal (GBR 英國)
Ramil Gallego (PHL 菲律賓) vs. Ralf Souquet (GER 德國)
Thorsten Hohmann (GER 英國) vs. Carlo Biado (PHL 菲律賓)
Francisco Sanchez Ruiz (ESP 西班牙) vs. Klenti Kaci (ALB 阿爾巴尼亞)
Brandon Shuff (USA 美國) vs. Jeffrey De Luna (PHL 菲律賓)
Roberto Gomez (PHL 菲律賓) vs. Chris Melling (GBR 英國)
Alexander Kazakis (GRE 希臘) vs. Jayson Shaw (GBR 英國)
*The second event of the World Pool Series, The Aramith Masters, takes place at Steinway Billiards in Astoria, Queens, New York City from April 5-8, 2017. The World Pool Series is sponsored by Aramith, Molinari, Predator, Cheqio, RYO Rack, Iwan Simonis, Kamui, Billiards Digest, Cuescore, Ultimate Team Gear, and High Rock Productions.
For more information please visit the official website of the World Pool Series at http://www.worldpoolseries.com/
The World Pool Series is on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/worldpoolseries/