In an epic battle, the „Killer-Filler“ Joshua Filler (GER) took down Mario He (AUT) with 9:8.
The final match was contested between Mario He and Joshua Filler. It was broadcasted LIVE on Austrian TV ORF+. The local Organizer, Theo Riedlecker has together with the Austrian Federation ÖPBV and its Press Officer, Andreas Kronlachner, once more done a great job in organising LIVE TV for the tournament’s mens final.
Mario He drew first blood in the final match. He broke and ran the table with a dreamlike certainty to get a 1:0 lead over Filler. Filler started his game after that and had to throw in a few safety shots, which he managed perfectly, so that he could equalise at 1:1. After winning his next break rack, Mario He also managend to snatch a rack from Filler in order to gain a 3:1 advantage. He had the big chance to gain a three point lead over Filler, but the German didn’t like that idea too much. Filler stopped He’s victory march and took another rack to make the score 2:3. Again, Mario He managed to win a few racks in a row and pull away with 6:2. But Filler stuck to him like chewing gum and could not be shaken off. After twelve racks, the scoreline was 7:5 for Mario He. There were clouds on the horizon for Filler. Mario He was only two racks away from victory with Filler’s break shot coming up in rack thirteen. What happened next was inevitable. Filler broke dry again with no balls dropping in any pocket, leaving an open table for Mario He. Would Filler be able to once again weather the storm? Not if Mario He took his chances. The Austrian cleared the table and ran all balls until he got to the 7-ball. There he fell out of position and missed the next shot. Filler cloud not believe him being given a second life in this match. Instead of trailing 5:8 he was now on Mario He’s neck, trailing only 6:7. In rack fourteen, Mario He once again played a bad safety shot and allowed Filler to clear the table to tie the match at 7:7. The Filler went for his time-out and collected all the energy he could for the last stage of the final match. The heat was on Mario He now. He had Filler almost with one foot in the grave and now everything was out in the open. The Austrian picked himself up and played at top level to get to the hill first. Now the heat was again on for Filler. He knew that a single mistake would be the end of the match for him. Filler performed ice-cold and showed no nerves, running all balls to get to blows in St. Johann with a hill-hill match at 8:8. The next rack would decide the winner. Mario He had the advantage to break the rack. He had the 4-ball down and the layout looked very promising for him. But to the shock of the audience, Mario He missed the 1-ball. Filler played a safety shot and Mario He committed a foul shot. That was it for this match! Joshua Filler ran the rack and took the title, relegating Mario He to the seat of the runner-up in this event.
„After having lost the first match in this tournament, I would have never expected to make it to the final match“, stated Mario He after the match. „I only won the second Euro-Tour in my career“, mentioned Joshua Filler, „that clearly indicates how difficult it is to win a Euro-Tour event“. „I would like to dedicate this victory to my former sponsor and mentor Andreas Sommer who unfortunately passed away four years ago. This Euro-Tour event in St. Johann was the first one for me ever and if he would see me now winning it, I know he would be very proud of me“, mentioned Filler.
During the event, over 850 antigen and PCR tests have been carried out for players and staff. Not one positive result has been recorded.
Dynamic Billard St. Johann im Pongau Open 2021
Top Eight Players
1. Joshua Filler GER
2. Mario He AUT
3. David Alcaide ESP
Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz ESP
5. Jose Alberto Delgado ESP
Alexander Kazakis GRE
Wojciech Szewczyk POL
Wiktor Zielinski POL