Mosconi Cup Vet Lely Named Euro Skipper
Matchroom Sport can announce that Alex Lely of Holland has been appointed as the captain of the European team for this year’s 15th annual PartyCasino.com Mosconi Cup which takes place at the Hilton Hotel, Portomaso, St Julians, Malta from December 11 – 14.
Lely, 34, of The Hague, assumes the role reactivated in recent years by countryman Johan Ruijsink who lead Europe to a drawn match in 2006 and then a superb victory last year in Las Vegas.
The Dutchman, who has wound down his playing career in recent times as he seeks to establish himself as a coach, has played twice in the Mosconi Cup.
He was a member of the unsuccessful European team in 1999 at the York Hall in London, and then again in 2005 in at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
As a player, Lely has three Euro Tour wins to his credit as well as four gold medals at the European Championships – two team and two individual.
However, the highlight of his career may well be his run to victory at the 1999 World Pool Masters where he beat Francisco Bustamante, Tommy Donlon and Kunihiko Takahashi, before disposing of Efren Reyes in the championship match.
Lely commented; “This means a lot to me as I know have the chance to win the Mosconi Cup which I never did as a player. It will be an honour to work with this group of players and I will have to earn their respect as a coach.
“Of course it will be difficult – the Americans have won so many times but the tide is beginning to turn. The Europeans as individuals have won so many titles recently and when World Champions are left out it shows the strength of the team.
“I’m confident and looking forward to the job ahead. The Mosconi Cup is all about heart and I think we have that.”
The American captain will be announced later this week.
This year will see the 15th running of pool’s answer to the Ryder Cup and the current score stands at 10 ½ – 3 ½ to the Americans.
The official sponsors of the 2008 Mosconi Cup are PartyCasino.com, Brunswick Tables, Simonis Cloth, Super Aramith Pro Balls and Predator Cues.
A range of superb value hotel and ticket packages are available from the Official Mosconi Cup Travel Agents www.alleventsmalta.com
For tickets only please go to www.maltacup.org