Fisher Dominates, Top Seed Ousted
The men better watch out, because the 2008 WPBA Player of the Year is on a roll! Kelly Fisher trounced Gabe Owen (US) in the round of 16 of the winners’ bracket of the Philippine Open. Owen never had a chance as Fisher jumped out from the start and eventually ended up with an 8-1 lead. Fisher actually had a chance to put away the match in the eleventh rack when Owen broke dry and left the 10 ball hanging in the corner pocket. Instead of lining up the 4-10 combo, she decided to run the rack out but missed the 6 ball that was tight on the rail. She was just delaying the inevitable and ran out the next rack to finish out the match 9-3 when Owen once again broke dry.
The third session of the day featured the remaining matches of the round of 16 on the winners’ side who were not played on the TV table. Winners of the matches in this round would be guaranteed to receive at least $2,200 USD.
Numerous seeds fell in the winners’ bracket matches leaving only two seeded players remaining in the quarters of the winners’ bracket. The seventh-seeded Marcus Chamat (Sweden) defeated tenth seed Antonio “Ga Ga” Gabica (Philippines) by a score of 9-2, and the sixteenth-seeded Demosthenes Pulpul defeated fellow Filipino Mario Tolentino 9-4. Number two seed and reigning world 10-ball champion Darren Appleton suffered his first loss of the tournament by falling to Radoslaw Babica (Poland) 9-6. Top American and number-five seed Shane Van Boening also suffered his first loss of the tournament in a hill-hill thriller to wild card entry Rudy Susanto (Indonesia). Other seeds to fall in this round were fourth seed Ko Pin-Yi, eleventh seed Satoshi Kawabata, and fourteenth seed Jeffrey “The Bull” De Luna.
The first session of day three produced some unexpected results as two more seeded players were eliminated from the tournament. The number-six seed and the Taiwanese number-one-ranked player Fu Che-Wei fell to Young Hwa Jeong of Korea. Fu Che-Wei was always behind in the match and lost 9-5. The number thirteen seed, Thorsten Hohmann (Germany), fell to fellow European Ruslan Chinahov (Russia). Hohmann was leading in the match by a score of 6-3 when Chinahov went on a winning streak of five games and got to the hill first. Hohmann brought it back to hill-hill before Chinahov had a nice run-out in the final rack to put the match away. Another seeded player was at risk of also being eliminated when hometown favorite Marlon Manalo was down 7-4 to Kim Hee Sup (Korea) but managed to win the next five games and fend off elimination.
The noon session also produced three other exciting matches that went down to the wire at hill-hill. In addition to the Hohmann/Chinahov match, Oscar Dominguez (US) was able to hold off Victor Arpilleda (Philippines) 9-8 after Dominguez got to the hill first at 8-5 before Arpilleda brought it back to hill-hill. Second-chance alternate James Al Ortega (Philippines) prevailed over Naoyuki Oi (Japan) 9-8. Another Filipino was eliminated when countrymen Jestoni Magadia and Allan Quartero faced off against each other and Quartero triumphed 9-8.
The second session of the day produced some great come from behind victories. Corey Deuel (US) trailed Kuo Po-Cheng by a score of 6-3 when Deuel won the next six games to win the match 9-6. Ruslan Chinahov trailed James Al Ortega (Phillipines) by a score of 7-4 when Chinahov put together five games in a row to win 9-7.
In another second-session match fifteenth seed Karen Corr (Ireland) never was behind in her match with Kok Hon Keong (Malaysia) and won 9-4. But her next opponent was world number one and number-one seed Ralf Souquet and as a result would be eliminated from the tournament with a 9-2 loss. For her efforts she will take home the $800 USD prize for 25-32nd place.
The last session of the day resulted in more seeded players being knocked out of the tournament because they had to play each other. The losers of these matches took home $1,200 USD. Fifth seed Shane Van Boening and ninth seed Corey Deuel battled it out with Deuel winning 9-4. Tenth seed Antonio Gabica and twelfth seed Marlon Manalo clashed with Gabica sending the hometown favorite home 9-4. Top seed Ralf Souquet played fourteenth seed Jeffrey “The Bull” De Luna, and the world number one was ousted by the score of 9-3. Last but not least, eleventh seed Satoshi Kawabata (Japan) lost to Oscar Dominguez (US) 9-4. Only seven of the sixteen seeds remain in the tournament.