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Why is Leppens world class, but not in World Cups?

Posted by on February 15, 2017

Why is Leppens world class, but not in World Cups?

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Eddy Leppens, world class everywhere, not in World Cup circuit

DEURNE - When Belgian player Eddy Leppens shows up at the World championship, the Belgian, Dutch, German or French league, he will usually perform on a world class level. But when he comes to a World Cup, anywhere in the world, Leppens is not a shadow of the wonderful player he is everywhere else. This Monday, for example, Leppens played a world class match against Torbjörn Blomdahl in the Belgian league. And what could be the reason that he's not among the top guns in the World Cups?

His friend Jan Bloemen, a specialist in sports psychology, has spent many hours to analyze the player. We all saw him at the World championship in Bordeaux last year, full of energy and motivation, only stopped by Dani Sánchez' super sprint in the semi-finals. But last week, in the Bursa World Cup, the same Leppens couldn't keep up with the top guns.

The World Cup-phobia of Leppens is a strange phenomenon. In Bursa, Turkey, he lost on Friday to Blomdahl 40-30 in 31 without even threatening his opponent. Three days later, in the billiard room of the Belgian frontrunner BC Deurne, the Swede ran into a demonstration of resilience, rarely seen.

Blomdahl played as he does in World Cups, even better, with a ten and twelve start which brought him to 22-0. But Leppens was in a different mode than in a World Cup, he was super-concentrated, unleashed and brilliant at times. He fought his way into the match and when Blomdahl missed a few times, he scored a fantastic series of five innings in which he made 41 points: 4, 3, 9, 7, 18. Leppens took the lead, 42-25, and eventually won the match 50-38 in fourteen innings, averaging 3.517 to 2.714 for Blomdahl.

Is there someone, other than the man himself, who knows what goes wrong with Leppens when he travels to a World Cup? Is it because he can't stand the pressure, because he wants so badly to reach the top of the world ranking? His Belgian fans responded after the match against Blomdahl: Eddy is world class. And yes he is... He showed it indeed on Monday, in the match which was streamed by the Dane Frede Nielsen and can be seen live on Youtube. But what about the lack of successes in World Cups through the years, the tournaments with the whole world top, where Leppens rarely survives the first round of the main event?

With his team Op de Meir, Leppens was responsible for BC Deurne's loss at home (7-1). The home team did not even perform badly, but Op de Meir scored 184 caroms in 102 innings against Deurne 157. And in Leppens' shadow, Barry van Beers (1.666), Roland Uijtdewillegen (1.312) and Ivan Stitschinsky (1.615) also played on a high level. Only Davy van Havere recorded a draw for the home team against Stitschinsky 42-42 in 26 innings.

Frédéric Caudron took his Bursa form to the Salpho

Frédéric Caudron returned home with his excellent form that he showed at the Bursa World Cup: De Goeie Queue took victory against Biljart Express (6-2). Caudron started with five against Frans van Kuyk, followed by five, eight in the fifth inning, leading 25-10 at the break in eight innings. After the break, Caudron missed his first attempt, but then ran out with 25 points in three innings: 13-2-10, good for a super match again in twelve innings.

Jean Paul de Bruijn had a strong first half, with 10 from the break, but Gerwin Valentijn responded with 11 in the 4th inning. De Bruijn was leading 46-24, but then continued with 10 misses in a row. Valentijn could came back, but finally had to bow at 50-42 in 26. Martin Spoormans was a tormentor for Wesley deJaeger (42-28 in 29), Jerry Hermans defeated Guy van Litsenborg 42-28 in 33.

Op de Meir joined the top three on the ranking due to their victory over BC Deurne, six points behind de Goeie Queue. Quality Zele is fourth after the 5-3 victory at Herentals. Martin Horn was the best player in that match with his win over Eddy Merckx: 50-37 in 19. Peter De Backer defeated Christian Rudolph 50-36 in 30. Jorissen and Smolders played a draw, Mathieu Vlerick defeated Geert Meylemans 42-39.

Mister 100 was boss over De Witte Molen in its home match and is one of the sub top teams. Without Raymond Ceulemans, recovering from his surgery, Mr 100 won 6-2. Peter Ceulemans left Glenn Hofman far behind 50-21 in 24. Dirk Weeremans was the only winner in the Sint Niklaas team 42-37 in 42 innings against Koen Ceulemans. Kurt defeated Francis Forton, Bart won his match against Ad Broeders with a strong 1.680.

Zanzibar returned from his visit to Biljartvrienden with a 6-2 win. Raimond Burgman beat for the home team Roland Forthomme 50-43 (36). Dave Christiani won the high-level match against John Tijssens 50-49 in 28. Kortrijk pushed De Ploeg deeper in trouble by winning 5-3. Best man of the evening was Bitalis.



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