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Carom Billiard - 3-Cushion - 3CC World Masters - Seoul (KOR)

Players and audience: positive and skeptical

Posted by on July 12, 2018

Players and audience: positive and skeptical

© Kozoom Studio
The entire field of players for the 3CC World Masters during the opening ceremony

SEOUL - The victory of Tayfun Tasdemir with closing runs of 11 and 15 was the highlight on the first day at the 3CC World Masters in Seoul. The young Spaniard David Martinez surprisingly beat Korean home player Sung-Won Choi and Dick Jaspers is in danger in a group of death after his loss against Heo (43-32) facing a tough mission to reach the knock-outs. In six rounds of twelve matches, in a very stylish setting and recorded by a battery of tv cameras, the pilot of the new tournament system was launched. The comments of players and audience were mostly positive, but also skeptical. The system, with computer-defined positions, stimulates attacking play and the short time clock (30 seconds) increases the tempo. The interruptions to put the three balls on the designated positions, break the rhythm. The last inning of the day, with Torbjörn Blomdahl and Semih Sayginer at the table, was marked by an unlucky system break for more than four minutes.

The very high averages were lacking on the first day of play. The highlight came from Tayfun Tasdemir and Jung-Han Heo in their match, which was by far the best on the opening day. The final score, 66-55, and most of all the spectacular finish was forced by Tasdemir with two high runs: first 11 in the 19th inning followed by 15 in the last. Only Vietnamese Nguyen Quoc Nguyen in his match against Semih Sayginer also achieved two average out of a total of twelve matches: final score 40-27. The only draw was between Eddy Leppens and Chi-Yeon Cho: 29-29. The first to be eliminated after one day are Semih Sayginer, Sung-Won Choi and Dinh Nai Ngo after two losses in their groups of three.

The first player comment, after an early game in the schedule, by Tayfun Tasdemir: ,,The system was delaying at first, because the machine (laser computer) faltered occasionally. I could not get into my focus, but because of the two high runs at the end, I finished with a good feeling. I like the system, but it can be even better.''

Eddy Leppens, who played far below his level in the next round: ,,We all have to get used to and to adjust. It's hard to get your rhythm, because the speed of playing is constantly interrupted. That will still improve. The system was not yet optimal and for the referees, this also was a new experience.''

Nguyen Quoc Nguyen after his victory over Semih Sayginer: ,,I am so happy with this system, because I only have to focus on attacks and not on defend. This is my style of playing, it should always be that way.''

Marco Zanetti: ,,We can certainly gain time in the ten to twenty seconds that the system determines the new position. With that small improvement, it will be much more attractive for the player and the audience.''

Semih Sayginer: ,,I am very positive about the format with one small comment. The fact that the referees have to pick up the ball in every inning, influences the course of the ball. The referee hits the ball with a glove. And if he perspires a lot, the sweat comes on the ball and the cue ball shows will react completely different. That happened to both of us at the end of the match with Blomdahl.''

Mr. Farouk Barki, the UMB president, spoke about start-up problems, but was optimistic: ,,We still have to improve, of course. The referees can act faster, the system can be faster, but after one day it will be much better. I am convinced that this will be a very high-level tournament.''

Kozoom CEO Xavier Carrer, organizer and initiator: ,,I had some doubts after the starting matches, but later I had to change my mind. We're doing very well so far, the ambiance is good, the matches will be better and better, let's wait and see where it will bring us in the upcoming days.''

The general opinion of the players after one day:
x the averages are in some way less than expected due to the rhythm interruption. That will certainly improve.
x most of the positions are played from an automatism: to play purely on the attack, requires a change of mind.
x the two players often make the same choice in playing the same position.
x most positions that the computer puts down are makeable.

Dick Jaspers, who entered the tournament in the evening session, spoke in the view of many other players with his comment: ,,We must be very happy in first place with this new format of tournaments. The venue is fantastic, everything is under one roof in a five-star hotel, we can play for a big prize money and the organization is extremely professional. More than that, we can not wish as a player. It really is a privilege to be here. We have to nurture it and adapt quickly to the new rules and circumstances.''

In the eight groups, the first wins went to Minh Cam Ma, Jérémy Bury, Nikos Polychronopoulos, Nguyen Quoc Nguyen, David Martinez, Tayfun Tasdemir and Quyet Chien Tran. The highest scores were made by Tasdemir with 66, Jung-Han Heo with 55 and Nguyen with 40 points. Eddy Leppens trailed a deficit against Cho and ended with a draw. The first three of the group heads came in the final evening sessions to the arena. The two best Belgians, Frédéric Caudron and Eddy Merckx, as well as Marco Zanetti and Dani Sánchez will be at the start on the second day. Zanetti and Sánchez at 11.00 Korean time, Caudron and Merckx at 13.00. Dick Jaspers did not have the best start of the event losing to Jung-Han Heo 43-32. The Dutchman needs a big win over Tasdemir to continue in his Friday match.

Torbjörn Blomdahl had enough to qualify with a victory over Semih Sayginer in the last round. The Swede won 30-24 and faces Nguyen for his last group match. Murat Naci Coklu signed with his win for the elimination of Sung-Won Choi and qualified for the knock-outs himself. Tomorrow, Friday, the Turk plays his last against David Martinez.

The venue in a view from the stands

Tayfun Tasdemir showed his form with a brilliant finish

Nguyen Quoc Nguyen: i am so happy with this system,now I can attack and not think about defence. This is my favourite style of playing

Torbjörn Blomdahl wents on himself and outplayed Semih Sayginer

Murat Naci Coklu, last day winner against Dinh Nai Ngo

David Martinez, already in the knock-outs after his win over Sung-Won Choi

Eddy Leppens still in the race after his draw with Cho

Jérémy Bury defeated Wan Young Choi and is facing Eddy Merckx in his last

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