Double white-wash for Teams England!
England A 7-0 Indonesia
Finland 7-6 Korea
England B 7-0 Germany
THERE WAS double joy for the two English teams at the 888.com World Cup of Pool as first England A routed Indonesia 7-0 to reach the second round, and then the B team smashed Germany by a similar score line to reach the quarter-finals. Both teams looked in outstanding shape and with them both being in different halves of the draw the possibilities of an all-England final on Sunday night are not out of the question.
England A, comprised of former World Champions Darren Appleton and Karl Boyes, looked very much the part as they completed the first round matches with a thumping 7-0 win over Indonesia at the York Hall to set up a second round game against Italy.
Looking focused throughout, England never let the Indonesian pairing of Ricky Yang and Irsal Nasution off the hook as they put on the best performance of the tournament to date.
Appleton was certainly pleased with how it went; “We are best friends and we have been for a long time, so we feel really comfortable together. We always play really well together. “We had the advantage of watching all the other matches so we got to see how the table played and we really enjoyed it.
“The next match is really big. Italy played really well today. We know Fabio and Bruno well and we have played them many times but I think we have the slight edge and we are playing at home. That’s the important one, if we can get through that and to the quarter-finals it is up to race to nine and we are more comfortable with that,” he added.
The opening match of the second round was a close fought affair as the defending champions Finland – Petri Makkonen and Mika Immonen – took on Korea who have giant-killing form in this competition. The Korean pair of Ham Won Sik and Ryu Sueng Woo played well but the Finns got the better of the first half as they opened up a 4-2 lead. The Asians though dug in and made the most of some Finnish errors to win four in a row and move to the hill at 6-4.
In an entertaining affair, the Finns then went on a run and the match was eventually tied up at hill-hill with Makkonen breaking. He thundered one down and two balls dropped with the 1 ball available in the top left pocket. Immonen messed up a bit on the positional shot but his partner made an excellent cut on the 2 ball and from there they ran out to be the first team to reach the quarter-finals.
“When we were 6-4 down I was just feeling ‘give us another shot and we can try and control the table’,” said a delighted Immonen.
“It was very nerve wracking and they punished us for minor mistakes and played very well and put us under real pressure.
“The next race is more of a cushion (Race to 9) and it gives you more chance of a comeback. Still, it’s a short race so we need to start strong and put pressure on the opponents and if we do then we can go all the way from here,” he added.
The final game of the night saw another superb English show, this time from the B team as Daryl Peach and Chris Melling took apart the German pairing of Ralf Souquet and Dominic Jentsch, winning by 7-0. Outstanding potting and safety play were the order of the day as they moved in to a 3-0 lead. A Peach snooker on the fourth forced Souquet to miss and they increased the lead with ball in hand. They ran out the next for 5-0 and did exactly the same in the next to reach the hill. There was another terrific break and run to seal a great night for the English.
Melling was thrilled by the win, “They were contrasting performances (first and second round). The A team put a clinic on and we had to come up with something special. In the first round we played 60 percent and got through that match, but not many people are going to beat you if you play like that.”
Peach added, “The difference was in the first match we maybe had a few nerves and wanted to try and get the first win under our belt. We have settled into the tournament now and we knew we would have to play well tonight because Germany are a class act and have won this event twice before. We had to come out with our best performance today.
“We are all top players and when the sides were picked me and Chris knew we would gel and Darren and Karl knew they would gel. We just got called ‘B’ but we are not a reserve side, call us Z team if you like, it doesn’t matter to us, we do our talking on the table.”
The 2013 888.com World Cup of Pool runs from Tuesday September 17 to Sunday, September 22 at the famous York Hall in Bethnal Green, East London. The field features 32 teams from 31 countries in a single elimination format. The total prize fund is US$250,000 with $60,000 going to the eventual champions.
Play continues tomorrow afternoon with three more second round match:
Hungary v Russia
Philippines v Singapore
Chinese Taipei v Greece
For live streaming of the 888.com World Cup of Pool go to http://www.pool.livesport.tv/
The 2013 World Cup of Pool runs from 17 – 22 September and takes place at the York Hall, London. For those wanting to watch the action in person, all tickets are available from www.seetickets.com (Search ‘World Cup of Pool’)
The 2013 World Cup of Pool is delighted to work with our valued suppliers – Official Table – Diamond; Official Cloth: Iwan Simonis; Official Balls: Super Aramith; Official Cue: Predator.
Luke Riches, Matchroom Sport: firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes: Matchroom Sport are one of the world’s leading producers of televised sport and are responsible for over 1,000 hours of original programming across a range of sports. Based in the UK and chaired by charismatic founder Barry Hearn, World Cup of Pool is one of a stable of pool events that include the World Pool Masters and the Mosconi Cup.