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Lausanne climax: Jaspers-Coklu, Merckx-Sánchez

Posted by on November 25, 2018

Lausanne climax: Jaspers-Coklu, Merckx-Sánchez

© Lausanne Masters
Murat Naci Coklu, the last in the pre-rounds to reach the knock-outs, is in the last four after his win over Zanetti

LAUSANNE - In the flowery, cozy billiard room in Lausanne's casino, one Dutchman, one Belgian, one Spaniard and one Turk are meeting in the battle for the title in a prestigious event,  the Lausaanne Billiard Masters.   Dick Jaspers, Eddy Merckx, Dani Sánchez and Murat Naci Coklu, with a total of ten world titles in three cushion, moved up to the semi-finals of the Lausanne Billiard Masters on Saturday-evening. The first encounter, between Jaspers and Coklu, is this morning at 10:00, two hours later Sánchez and Merckx face each other. The final match is at 14:30, all matches are broadcast live on

The number one of the pre-rounds, Marco Zanetti, disappeared from the stage in the first knock-out round after losing in the last of the preliminaries. Murat Naci Coklu was the last player on the rankings to reach the quarterfinals with eight players. A new start has been launched for the Turkish player in this tournament, in which he had a false start with two losses, but after beating Jaspers in his last, the knock-out saw the real Coklu. The main tournament at the Lausanne Masters started with high level matches. Dick Jaspers outplayed Torbjörn Blomdahl in 14 innings, Eddy Merckx was the better of Dong-Koong Kang and Dani Sánchez bested Martin Horn in 15 innings. Murat Naci Coklu started his match with Zanetti by a run of 12 in the first innings and won 40-21 in 20.

In that same round, Dick Jaspers, the defending champion, took victory over Torbjörn Blomdahl, partly thanks to a run of eight just before the break (22-17) and six right after the stop (34-21) to finish 40-29 in 14. That kept the title holder in the tournament.

Dani Sánchez went well at the start in the last evening session against Martin Horn (9-1 in 3), but the German recovered (16-13 in 7) and led 20-18 at the break. In the second part, the Spaniard ruled sovereignly which brought him to a comfortable 40-26 in 15. Eddy Merckx put Korean Kang under pressure in the first part with regular scores (23-9 in 8) and continued to the finish: 40-14 in 15.

The preliminary rounds of the Masters turned into an exciting final in the Saturday games with a wonderful Dong-Koong Kang, beating Jérémy Bury in ten innings with a run of 17 and Dani Sánchez, also scoring a 17 against Boulaz. Marco Zanetti was the only unbeaten player with three victories, Dick Jaspers and Torbjörn Blomdahl lost their last match when they had already advanced for the quarters. Dani Sánchez took the lead in the group after Blomdahl's loss to Merckx. Dick Jaspers and Zanetti were the other group winners, the numbers two were Blomdahl, Kang and Horn. The battle for the two best numbers three was decided at the line. Eddy Merckx went on to the knockouts with 4 points and 1.666. Murat Naci Coklu finished with two points and 1.661 average, Jérémy Bury was out with two points and 1.651.

The preliminaries:

Group A:

Torbjörn Blomdahl, Dani Sánchez and Eddy Merckx played for the group win. The Swede had the best start, but in the final round, Sánchez (against Boulaz) and Merckx (against Blomdahl) balanced the score in match points. Merckx had a formidable final shot against Blomdahl after 20-14 behind in 13 innings. Six innings later, with runs of 6 and 11, Merckx won the match 40-26. Merckx scored 26 times, Blomdahl 6 times in the final phase. Dani Sánchez secured the group win by a victory over Boulaz and the best overall average.

The group ranking:
1 Dani Sánchez 4-1.875-17
2 Torbjörn Blomdahl 4-1.709-12
3 Eddy Merckx 4-1.666-11
4 Michel Boulaz 0-0.560-4

Group B:

Korean Dong-Koong Kang was the star of the last round with a run of 17 in the second inning. With that, he made a huge gap to Jérémy Bury (27-6 in 3). The match ended at high level, with Kang as the winner in ten innings: 40-18. Dick Jaspers had a small setback in the second part after a quick start against Murat Naci Coklu (22-11 in 8 after a run of ten). The gap was closed by Coklu at 23-12 by a run of 11 (23-23). Coklu's victory in the final sprint, secured his place in the quarter-finals. Kang and Jaspers are the numbers one and two.

The ranking:
1 Dong-Koong Kang 4-2.534-17
2 Dick Jaspers 4-2.533-11
3 Murat Naci Coklu 2-1.661-11
4 Jérémy Bury 2-1.651-8

Group C:

Marco Zanetti was the sovereign winner with a series of three victories. In his last match, the Italian master defeated Jung-Han Heo 40-17 in 20. That brought Zanetti, twice Lausanne winner, to the top of the rankings after the preliminaries. Martin Horn moved up to the quarters as number two in this group, despite a difficult match with Gwendal Maréchal. The young Frenchman dominated for a long time, including 21-15 in 10 and 31-25 in 15. Maréchal lost his rhythm after the break and was overtaken by Horn, first 35-34 in 23, two innings later 40-37.

The ranking:
1 Marco Zanetti 6-1.875-11
2 Martin Horn 4-1.400-14
3 Jung-Han Heo 2-1.161-8
4 Gwendal Maréchal 0-1.275-7.

What was eventually the role of Michel Boulaz in this tournament with only top guns and one young talent? The 60-year-old Swiss, a real lover of three-cushion, started playing billiards at the age of eight, but then discovered another magic: that of a pastry chef. In his young years Boulaz was fascinated by a certain Mr. Python in the Avenue de Cour in Lausanne and started to learn the profession of 'boulanger.' Much later, he took over the bakery and pastry shop and now Boulaz has bought two other companies. He started his business at a time when there were 120 independent bakers in Lausanne, now there are only 15 left. Billiards has always been his passion, training was not possible because of the night work in the bakery. Boulaz played in a European championship one time. He could not shine in the Lausanne Billard Masters this year. The Swiss lost to Blomdahl, Sánchez and Merckx and ended just over 0.500 average.

Eddy Merckx, the better of Korean Dong-Koong Kang

Dani Sánchez outplayed Martin Horn

Dick Jaspers had the best match in the pre-rounds and best match in the quarters

Swiss player Michel Boulaz on his chair in his match with Eddy Merckx



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My Comments

Videos do not work
We have been emailing posting texting the admin!!
None of the videos work on your website for more 3 weeks now!!
Fix the problem already guys comooon

Message 1/2 - Publish at November 25, 2018 10:48 PM

No problem here - what are you using to view?
I'm in the US and have no problem viewing videos on my Mac laptop running Firefox or Safari. Videos will not play on iPads due to Flash incompatibility with IOS devices.

Publish at November 27, 2018 3:04 AM

Hi "kjonesdp".
I am using firefox on Samsung Galaxy Notes 8 and lately I can't view any of the replay videos. I don't have this problem before. Your suggestions are appreciated. Thanks!

Message 2/2 - Publish at November 27, 2018 7:02 AM

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