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Danny Molier shows his hand in Dutch league

Posted by on January 7, 2018

Danny Molier shows his hand in Dutch league

© Danny Molier
David Martinez made his debut for DPC's foreign legion

ZUNDERT - The title in the Dutch league is still far away, as Danny Molier realizes. But the one of the most colorful and high-profile team captains in the Buffalo League, the 31 year-old manager of a billiard room in Vlaardingen, does not mind speaking about his intentions.  ,,We aim for a place in the play-offs, and in our best line-up, we're dangerous'', he says on this Sunday evening, after his team has won the difficult away game against Zundert with apparent ease: 8-0!,

Like many famed European soccer clubs, he has an army of hired guns from abroad under contract. Look at DPC's human arsenal: Nikos Polychronopoulos (Greece), Birol Uymaz (Turkey), David Martinez (Spain), Jérôme Barbeillon (France), Cédric Melnytschenko (France), Martin Spoormans (Belgium) and Richard Bitalis (France). ,,I hear people say we must have an enormous budget'', says Molier with a smile. ,,Nothing is further from the truth. I think the true top teams spend a lot more every year. It's a matter of being creative with what you have. I dare to say we started the season with a projected 15.000 euro. We'll exceed that, but not by much.'' The play-offs start to come within reach, after today's monster victory in Zundert against a team that, at the start of the season, was called a title candidate.

SIS Schoonmaak (8-0 win over 't Hartje) is still in the lead, but HCR Prinsen (4-4 against wasted another precious point. The fight is mostly about the number 2 and 3 spots, behind the leader. A1 Biljarts (7-1 against De Veemarkt today) and L&B (5-3 against Team Eekhoorn) are in the hunt. But is there any team able to send a more convincing squad into the arena in the deciding weeks, than Danny Molier? There is a bit of organizing involved, and improvisation as well.  

Molier: ,,This weekend for instance, when we had to fly in Nikos Polychronopoulos, Birol Uymaz and David Martinez. It is doable though. Martinez had to be rushed back to the airport, because he has school on Monday. The other guys sleep over and travel back home tomorrow. We try to fit it together: on Friday we have played our Cup match, on Saturday we relaxed and socialized, today we played against Zundert. That is the way we want to schedule it later, against the most crucial opponents. Especially if we make it into the play-offs, I want to show up in the strongest possible line-up.''

Danny Molier is happy to give us an inside look into the budget side of things: ,,Let me explain. Birol Uymaz is no concern of mine, there is a private sponsor to take care of that. Other than that, DPC (billiard cloth) is our main sponsor. I have a deal with a hotel, they support us on the overnights, and we have a sponsoring business club to pay for the other players. As I said, you need to be creative. Nikos often travels from France, where he also plays league games, and he goes to Rotterdam by train, which is inexpensive. David Martinez can fly from Valencia on a 40 Euro ticket. A regular Dutch or Belgian 1.3 player will cost around 300 er match, the top players around 600 and a few world class guys even more than that. That can seriously raise your budget, and I'll do what I do for a lot less. Look at it like this: guys like Uymaz, Martinez and Melnytschenko are young and eager to get the experience in the Netherlands. By attracting those players, we have Europe's best talents in our team.''  

Molier again: ,,There is talk to reintroduce the foreign player rule in the Netherlands, to limit the number of players from abroad. I don't think they'll be able to do that. In a professional sport, you can't ignore European legislation. What I do think is wrong in the current rules, is the fact that players only need five matches to be eligible for the play-offs. That will create some distortion at the end. Many teams are very vocal about talent development. It makes me wonder: what does a team like SIS from The Hague, with four Dutch players, contribute to player education? Let them bring young players under contract then, so they put their money where their mouth is.''

The dream team was in action in Zundert today, and Nikos Polychronopoulos, started with 8 and 9 to take a 19-0 lead against Roland Forthomme. He won the match 40-20 in 22. Birol Uymaz shone against Peter Ceulemans, whom he only saw in the rear viwe mirror. A streak of 3-7-3-7-6 late in the match was good for a final score of 40-17 in 14. David Martinez has a flawless finish with runs of 9 and 5 against Barry van Beers (40-27 in 22). Richard Bitalis was not on that level, but he had no trouble winning his match against Raymon Groot,   40-25 in 39. Danny Molier: ,,We were never in any trouble.''

What else happened on the twelth day of play? Jeffrey Jorissen was at his very best in SIS's home game against 't Hartje (8-0) with a match in 14 innings (high run of 6) against Wim van Cromvoirt (40-15). Javier Palazón had a strong debut for A1 Biljarts when he beat Dustin Jäschke (40-18 in 20). Frédéric Caudron beat Eddy Leppens 40-26 in 15, so together with Jean Paul de Bruijn he turned a match around from 0-4 to 4-4.

Eddy Merckx and Frans van Kuyk drew 40-40 in 21, which was just enough for L&B Ledermode to get to a 5-3 win over Team Eekhoorn. There were tense matches between Kurt Ceulemans and Dave Christiani (40-39 in 29) and John Tijssens facing Jerry Hermans (40-38 in 27). For A1 Biljarts, Henk Blauwblomme had a spectacular finish against Rene Dericks (run of 14), but his opponent equalized with a 2. 2 (40-40 in 48). Wesley de Jaeger did well for Bousema (40 in 23), but red lantern MCR could still hold them to a draw. Jean van Erp was the second best player for SIS, winning 40-20 in 19 against Frank Martens.

The current standing in the Buffalo league:

1 SIS Schoonmaak 12-21

2 HCR Prinsen 12-19

3 A1 Biljarts 12-15

4 DPC 12-14

5 L&B Ledermode 12-13

6 Team Eekhoorn 12-11

7 12-11

8 STZ Zundert 12-11

9 Bousema Lochem 12-10

10 Hartje/Van Wanrooy 12-9

11 De Veemarkt 12-8

12 MCR 12-2.

Javier Palazón, excellent debut in Dutch league

Henk Blauwblomme finished with 14


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