FORMER world champion Efren “Bata” Reyes humbled Jeong Young of Korea 9-4 in their losers’ bracket battle yesterday and advanced to the knockout round of the World 9-Ball Championship along with 12 other fellow Filipinos in Doha, Qatar. Also advancing were former world champion Dennis Orcollo, Antonio Gabica, Marlon Villanueva, Mark Antony, Raymond Faroun, Lee Van Corteza, Jeff de Luna, Ramil Gallego, Carlo Biado, former Asian snooker champion Marlon Manalo, Israel Rota, and another ex-world titlist, Alex Pagulayan.
But former world champion Francisco “Django” Bustamante was ousted by another former world titlist, Thorsten Hohmann of Germany, who prevailed 9-6 in their losers’ bracket showdown.
In all, 64 of the world’s top cue players advanced to the race-to11 knockout stage, with the title duel, a race-to-13 affair, set on Friday.
The cast includes defending champion Darren Appleton who led six other Britons to the knock-out round, while seven players from Chinese-Taipei also advanced. Germany and the Netherlands had four players each. Orcollo, who stayed perfect in the elimination round, opens his campaign in the knockout stage against Cheng Yu Hsuan of Chinese-Taipei while Reyes will be up against Nick Van de Berg of the Netherlands.
Gabica faces Nguyen Anh Tuan of Vietnam, Pagulayan battles Mikka Immonen of Finland, Villamor takes on Karl Boyes of Great Britan, Rota part ways with Antony, Faroun clashes with Lo Li Wen of Taipei, Corteza duels with Manuel Gama of Portugal, De Luna battles Niels Feijen of the Netherlands, Gallego takes on Enrique Rojas of Chile, Biado faces former world champion Ralf Souquet of Germany, and Manalo takes on Omar Al Shaheen of Kuwait.The last man standing on Friday will take home the top prize of $36,000 while the beaten finalist will bring home $18,000 out of the total prize pot of $250,000. (Malaya)