Souquet Shines at Pro Players Championship
Diamond Open 10-Ball Professional Players Championship / Oaks, PA
Allen Hopkins’ 20th Annual Super Billiards Expo kicked off March 8, with the new venue, the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center at Oaks, twice the size of the previous venue. The featured event, the Diamond Open 10-Ball Professional Players Championship, began Thursday with 68 players competing for their share of the $25,000-added prize purse.
Defending champion Ralf Souquet, who defeated Robb Saez in last year’s final match, is on course for a follow-up victory. He bested Jason Michas 10-4 in the second round and went on to deliver Zion Zvi to the west side in the third round 10-6. Saez eked out a win in his first-round match against Oscar Dominguez 10-9.
With 68 players, the first round had only 4 matches total. Finnish champion Mika Immonen has played three matches already, winning all of them. Corey Harper was his first victim 10-4. In the second round, Immonen bested Johnny “The Scorpion” Archer 10-7, and then he delivered Jason Hunt to the one-loss side 10-2.
Another player making a beeline for the finals is Darren Appleton, who zipped through his first two matches over Matt Krah 10-2 and Bucky Souvanthong 10-3. Of Appleton’s myriad titles, this would be his first at the Super Billiards Expo.
San Diego’s Louis Ulrich’s matches ran the gamut today. In his first match, against Shawn “Big Bubba” Putnam, he dealt the U.S. Open finalist a donut 10-0. The third round saw Ulrich face young Canadian John Morra, who recently took the Derby City Classic banks title. This match went double-hill, with Ulrich escaping 10-9.
Former champ at this event, Shane Van Boening was upset in the third round after a first-round bye and a second-round victory over Tim Murray 10-3. He faced Brian Brekke at that point and was sent to the west side 10-8.
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