Joshua Filler is the new partypoker US Open 9-Ball Champion after beating Wu Jiaqing 13-10 in the final at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino Convention Center in Las Vegas.
His performances throughout the tournament were worthy of one of billiard’s oldest and most prestigious titles, as the German knocked out defending champion Jayson Shaw as well as world-class players including Alex Kazakis, Albin Ouschan and finally Wu, whose foul in what became the final rack was his last action of a breath-taking tournament.
Over three days the 256-player field became 16 before the tournament transferred to the Diamond Arena and single elimination action. This was the first time the event had been promoted by Matchroom Multi Sport, and any pre-tournament doubts were dispelled by a week that had it all.
In front of a sold-out crowd of 700 pool fans, and many more watching live on TV in over 100 countries around the world, Filler displayed some of his very best offensive pool, the sort of play which saw him become the youngest ever Mosconi Cup player, winner, and MVP, a World Champion and World No.1 at 21, and now US Open Champion.
In the final, Wu won the lag and drew first blood before he ran the next two for a 3-0 lead. Filler then put a five-pack together but scratched in rack nine. Wu pulled one back however, a dry break saw the World No.1 return to the table to make it 6-4.
The next two racks were shared before Filler opened up a three-point lead which soon became five. A poor safety at 10-5 enabled Wu to narrow the deficit to four and eventually two, but at 10-8 Filler benefitted from an incredible fluke, crashing the 2 into the top corner pocket off the cue ball. He ran the rest of the rack and the following to reach the hill at 12-8.
Breaking for the match, Filler was dry and Wu had a roadmap back. He drove it and then made a 3/9 in the 22nd game, but at 12-10 committed a touch foul bridging over the 4 to the 1, giving ball in hand to Filler.
The German made no such mistakes and cleared for the title, $50,000, the Barry Behrman Trophy and his first green US Open winner’s jacket.
“It feels amazing,” said Filler. “I am overwhelmed with the situation right now. It is unbelievable for me, of course. There is only one reason why I am here now and so successful – it is my wife, and I love her so much.
“I want to thank all the spectators for this situation right now, I cannot describe in words how much it means to me right now. I know I played better earlier in the tournament but the final is a special situation. You put more pressure on yourself so maybe you make more mistakes but I was happy with my performance, of course. When he fouled, I knew it might be my last chance and I took it.
“I want to say thank you to everybody, and to Matchroom. They put on such a big event, it has been perfect for our sport and I want to say thank you.”
Wu takes home $25,000 as runner-up, while the 90 partypoker Mosconi Cup qualifying points collected by Filler puts him in a commanding position to return to Team Europe when the Cup takes place at Mandalay Bay later in November.
Partypoker 美國公開賽9號球錦標賽台北時間今天上午於拉斯維加斯的曼德勒海灣賭場度假村 (Mandalay Bay) 落下帷幕。最終，Joshua Filler 在決賽中以13-10擊敗吳珈慶奪冠。
美國公開賽9號球錦標賽為美國歷史最悠久並享負盛名的賽事之一，今年邁入第43屆同時也是Matchroom Multi Sport宣布接手運營賽事後的第一屆，而在經過一周的比賽過後，所有賽前對其的疑慮都被消除。
在經過前三天的激烈競爭，比賽從滿員的256名選手淘汰至剩下的最後16強選手進入單敗淘汰賽。在現在滿座的700位球迷及全球100個多個國家的電視觀眾面前，21歲的 Filler 展現出他驚人的進攻，他過往如此的表現不僅讓他已成為莫斯考尼盃史上最年輕的冠軍、最有價值球員、世界冠軍及世界排名第一，如今他更成為美國公開賽冠軍。
在決賽中，吳珈慶贏得衝球權後，連摸三取得3-0領先優勢。隨後 Filler 抓住機會連拿五局，以5-3反超。吳珈慶在第九局抓住 Filler 母球洗袋的機會扳回一局，而在下一開球沒有球落袋的情況下讓 Filler 回到球台，比分來到6-4。
Filler 逮住吳珈慶打進一記2號球後母球兩顆星落進底袋的機會將比分擴大至10-5。隨後，吳珈慶將比分追至10-8。第21局 Filler 衝球沒球進，吳珈慶連追兩局，比分10-12。第23局出現本場賽事最大轉折點，吳珈慶在準備擊打1號球時，球桿不慎碰到4號，讓 Filler 獲得自由球，最終Filler清台奪冠並收穫5萬美元獎金。
Filler 賽後說到: “感覺太棒了! 這時刻對我來說有點難以置性，無法用言語表達出此刻的心情。而今天能如此成功地站在這裡，都歸功於我的妻子，謝謝她。我也要謝謝所有球迷，我知道我在先前的比賽當中表現得更好，但決賽是另一種特殊情況。當你對自己施加更大壓力時，或許致使你犯下更多失誤，但我仍然對我的表現感到滿意。當他犯規時，我知道那可能是我最後的機會了，而我也把握住。最後我要感謝 Matchroom 舉辦如此盛大的賽事，正對我們的運動來說是非常正面的。”