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Carom Billiard - 3-Cushion - AGIPI Masters Finals - Schiltigheim (FRA)

The new generation is ready for the coup

Posted by on March 26, 2011

The new generation is ready for the coup

© Didier Fioramonti
Marco Zanetti and Filipos Kasidokostas, waiting for the semi finals.

How the Agipi Masters 2011 will end, who the winner will be, the days of the final stages have shown in any case that the top players are more vulnerable than ever in prestigious tournaments like this. The proof is evident in the composition of the semi-finals: none of the top five of the world is among the top four in the Masters final. Daniel Sánchez and Kyung-Roul Kim haven't even qualified for the final stages, Dick Jaspers, Eddy Merckx and Frédéric Caudron were eliminated this week in the quarterfinals.

Three of the four semifinalists are exponents of the new generation of top players. Filipos Kasidokostas, Jérémy Bury and Sung-Won Choi made nog so long ago the jump to top twelve. Only Marco Zanetti, the crafty veteran, conquered with a lot of mental spirit a place in the top four. He was already extremely strong in the preliminaries and now suppressed Frédéric Caudron in the quarterfinals.

Is there a new wind blowing at the top or is it a coincidence? The future will tell, but of course the era of Dick Jaspers, Frédéric Caudron, Daniel Sánchez, Torbjörn Blomdahl and certainly Kyung-Roul Kim is far from over. Still it's a fact that the young group of players is increasing itself strongly in the World cups and international championships.

Filipos Kasidokostas (27, sixth at the world ranking) is already for some years a player with some great highlights, who can threaten the traditional top more and more. The Greek looks very stressful sometimes, but is a killer at crucial moments, who can strike phlegmatic.

Sung-Won Choi (33e, ninth on the ranking) has too many ups and downs, like in his match against Eddy Merckx last night, but he only has a few years of experience in international tournaments. The Korean crawled through the eye of the needle by a few missed match balls of his opponent hyesterday, but he finished the match at a moment nobody was expecting it anymore.

Jérémy Bury (29, 10th at the ranking) was not in the form he showed in the previous round, yesterday against Javier Palazón. Yet the Frenchman played constantly around 2.000 on average. He scored a wonderful run of fifteen at an important moment in the match and could keep the lead the whole match.

Finally, it will be watching with more than a great interest for Marco Zaneiti (48, 12th at the ranking), who not only brought his own supporters from Italy, but also has his fans in the center of Agipi. The Italian, double world champion, with a great palmares, has never been so close to a grand success in this Masters. Tonight he has to take a last obstacle on his way to the final. But he will face an opponent (Bury) who's incredibly focused to continue his victory march.

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