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Carom Billiard - 3-Cushion - World Cup - Guri (KOR)

Jaspers, Bury, Tran or the wonderboy Cho

Posted by on September 3, 2016

Jaspers, Bury, Tran or the wonderboy Cho

© Kozoom/Korea
Sung-Won Choi, who lost by only one point, cheers the winner, young Korean Myung Woo Cho

GURI - The top favorites to win the Guri World Cup? Sung-Won Choi had just beaten Dong Koong Kang, and needed little time to think. The Korean, his country's first ever world champion two years ago, envisioned a podium with himself, Dick Jaspers and Torbjörn Blomdahl this Sunday. It would be a step further in his comeback after he dropped out of the top twelve. Little did he know that Blomdahl needed to survive six match points against Jung Han Heo for a miraculous escape. And he could not possibly foresee that he himself would lose by a single point and by a millimeter, in his encounter with Myung Woo Cho, the cheerful young man who has captured the hearts of the 600 spectators in this World Cup.

Putting Dick Jaspers in the top three was a good guess, as the Dutchman showed in the best match of the tournament so far. What a demonstration of pure class by Jaspers, who made a helpless Adnan Yüksel watch as he made 25 points in his first three innings (25-2). Final score: 40-12 in 9. Torbjörn Blomdahl found a miraculous way out of a match he could not possibly win. Jung Han Heo had the current world champion under control: all he had to do was finish him off from 34-20 and 39-31 after 25 innings. But no less than six missed match points later, the Swede had helped himself to a draw.

The outcome of the shootout was now almost predictable: the nervous South Korean came to the table after Blomdahl had ran a two, and missed the break. A round later, with another miracle escape in the making against Quyet Chien Tran (36-26, 39-33 behind) the little angel no longer sat on Blomdahl's Molinari cue. The Swede had ran out with seven (a fluke for his fourth) and reached the finish line first. The Vietnamese first equalized, and then responded with a three to Blomdahl's two in the shootout. After the winning point, Tran displayed an almost un-Asian emotion.

Sung Won Choi's crystal ball in the end proved to be as brittle as he was after his fantastic fight with little Cho, Jung Han Heo and poor Young Hoon Lee, a new face at this level, who like Yúksel ran into Jaspers at his most ruthless. The start of the flying Dutchman was even more impressive in that match: 22-1 (!) in 6 innings after a run of eleven. It lead to an unchallenged victory: 40-14 in 14. ,,I had not yet been severely tested in my three matches'', realized Jaspers, who had beaten Jae Guen Kim 40-15, Adnan Yüksel 40-12 and Young Hoon Lee 40-14.

The developments on the penultimate day had turned the Korean foursome into a single: the wonderboy and Korean hero, the young promise who in two days had overcome the Asian champion and Korean number 1 (Haeng Jik Kim) and the former world chanpion (Sung-Won Choi) with his fresh and fluent style of play.

How will Myung Woo Cho handle the pressure tomorrow, in the cauldron that will be Guri? Jérémy Bury, who is also playing a magnificent tournament, is already looking forward to it. ,,It is a wonderful thing for our sport, that so many spectators are so enthralled about our matches'', said the Frenchman after his victories over Eddy Merckx (40-23 in 22) and Javier Palazón (40-34 in 22). ,,I can't wait, even though I realize the crowd will mostly cheer for my opponent.They are fair though, and I like it when people really get into it.''

Jérémy Bury, the New York winner after another victory in the World Cup: ,,I can't wait for tomorrow in this fantastic ambiance.''

Dick Jaspers, a fantastic Saturday with over three average

The Vietnamese Quyet Chien Tran beat Blomdahl after a thriller in the shoot-out

The semifinals on Sunday 11.00 Korean time:

Jérémy Bury-Myung Woo Cho

13.00: Dick Jaspers-Quyet Chien Tran

The final is at 17.00 uur.

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