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Zanetti and Sánchez in battle for gold at World Games

Posted by on July 29, 2017

Zanetti and Sánchez in battle for gold at World Games

© Paul Brekelmans
Marco Zanetti and Dick Jaspers talking about the match after the semi-final won by the Italian

WROCLAW - The Italian title holder Marco Zanetti and the Spanish world champion Dani Sánchez are facing each other tomorrow (Sunday) in the final match for the three cushion gold medal at the World Games in Wroclaw. The third place battle is between Dick Jaspers and Sameh Sidhom. Dani Sánchez won the World Games twice, Marco Zanetti won four years ago in Colombia.

The finale is a match between two of the world's best players in this discipline. Dani Sánchez tops the world ranking, Marco Zanetti is the current number three. The Italian also took the European title in Brandenburg this year in a final against Frédéric Caudron. Dani Sánchez took the world title in a final against Korean Haeng-Jik Kim. The top twelve in the world is missing eight players at the World Games, amongst others Torbjörn Blomdahl, Frédéric Caudron, Eddy Merckx and Haeng-Jik Kim.

Dani Sánchez was by far the better of Sameh Sidhom in the semi-final. The Egyptian dentist could not threaten his opponent at all in the one-way match. The Spaniard soon ran out to 20-9 at the break after 12 innings), attacked to 31-11 in 16 and won 40-16 in 25, averages 1.600 and 0.640.

Marco Zanetti and Dick Jaspers remained in balance with small runs until 33-33 in 21 innings. The Italian had the much better final sprint with four and three, Jaspers missed in the equalizer at 40-36 (23 innings).

The World Games were not marked by extremely high averages and runs in the run-up to the final day. Zanetti enters the fight for gold with 1.967, Sánchez with 1.764. Dick Jaspers was stopped in the semi-final with 1.933 over three games, Sameh Sidhom recorded only 1.185. Dick Jaspers played the best match of the tournament so far with 40 in 12 and scored the best run: 14. In a total of 14 matches, only Zanetti (13) and Tran (11) also recorded runs over ten. Many matches ended with big differences in the score. The most tension was seen in the matches between Sameh Sidhom and Quyet Chien Tran (40-36 in 35) and between Marco Zanetti and Dick Jaspers (40-36 in 23).

Dani Sánchez, who won the World Games in Akita (2001) and Duisburg (2005) and won silver in Taiwan, explained the not too high averages and runs. ,,The balls (Cyclob) and the cloths (Andy) are unknown to us. We have never played with those materials before. They are not bad, but different. Many players are having problems.'' The Spaniard reached the final by wins over the Polish Tonojan, the American Patino and in the semi-final against Sidhom. ,,I was never in trouble, because everyone played badly against me.''

The final is on Sunday at 12.30. The third place match between Jaspers and Sidhom was this afternoon, the Egyptian won the bronze medal, 40-26 in 23 innings.

Dani Sánchez in his semi-final match against Sidhom

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