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Carom Billiard - 3-Cushion - Lausanne Billard Masters - Lausanne (SUI)

Dani Sánchez, champion in crisis time

Posted by on November 21, 2021

Dani Sánchez, champion in crisis time

© Ton Smilde
Dani Sánchez after his victory at the highest podium with Tasdemir, Sayginer and Bury

LAUSANNE - Two World Cups in a row and the Masters in Lausanne have given Dani Sánchez's billiard life a new dream start. The Spanish wonderboy in three-cushion is the champion in times of crisis, the player in an almost invincible year. The strong Turkish armada with its stars Tayfun Tasdemir and Semih Sayginer and the Frenchman Jérémy Bury could not stop the triumphal march of the Catalan winner in the Olympic capital. The final ended in a glorious score: Sanchez-Tasdemir 40-30 in 17 innings, 2,352 against 1,764 in favour of the Spaniard.

The billiard watchers who have seen Dani Sánchez's start in this Lausanne Masters will be amazed by the wonderful apotheosis. The capricious Dion Nelin from Denmark put Sánchez for one moment down to zero in the opening round, 40-15 in 15 innings, an unexpected punishment for the World Cup winner from Veghel. It was just a warm-up that shook Sánchez awake. From that match, the new number three in the world went quickly past Eddy Merckx (40-21 in 21), beat Nikolaus Kogelbauer (40-25 in 20), went along Roland Forthomme in the first knockouts (40-37 in 25), followed by Jérémy Bury in the semi-finals (40-32 in 22) and finally Tayfun Tasdemir in the last match.

The run-up to the most important tournament of the year, the World Championships in Sharm El Sheikh, December, could not have been better for Sánchez. The last two World Cup appearances in Antalya and Veghel, which were far apart due to the crisis, have shown that he is in a pleasant haze of victories. That was confirmed again in Lausanne this weekend. The Spaniard grew in the tournament, made high runs at decisive moments, had a patent on wonderful and some spectacular solutions and was extremely strong in the last part of his matches, where it was all about winning.

Just like he was the king of the final sprint against Dick Jaspers, Semih Sayginer and Jung Han Heo in the World Cup in Veghel a week ago, Sánchez also now outplayed opponents like Tasdemir, Bury, Forthomme and Merckx in Lausanne. That one slip, in the overture of the event against Nelin, was quickly forgiven. After that, nothing and nobody could stop Sánchez from a new, successful grab for another victory.

Tayfun Tasdemir, the last of two Turkish challengers, stayed close to Dani for the first part of the final, but had to capitulate when the Spaniard scored a 12 in the 12th inning to distance himself from the ultimate rival at 32-20. That was followed by a three (35-23), a first match ball (almost impossible fantasyball) and finally the winner at 40-30.

The winner looked back on an event that had an amazing final day with four Predator players on the podium. For the first time, an event like this was playd on a Predator match table, on which a World Cup will be played for the first time early next year, in Las Vegas. Dani Sánchez: ''We are a very strong team, like we showed that here in Lausanne. Predator had asked us to do interviews, videos and promotion during Lausanne, but luckily we kept winning all four and stayed in the tournament all days. That's was a big surprise for our sponsor.''

The Spaniard has the feeling that his top form can last longer than in earlier years in his career. ''Also in 2004, 2005 and 2006, when I became world champion and won a World Cup, I was in my best form for a longer period. But that is fifteen years ago now. I think it's happening to me again now, and I feel it will continue for a while. Hopefully until the World Championships and the World Cup in Sharm El Sheikh. Because Lausanne is really important, but those tournaments are highlights in the year.''

The comparison with the World Cup in Veghel was striking. ''In the INetherlands, I often came back from a deficit and in the end I could still win the matches in a final sprint'', Dani looked back. ''Here it was the other way around in a few matches. I was in the lead many times, but had some trouble to finish it off.''

The eighth Lausanne Masters ended in Dani Sánchez's second victory here and a podium with two Turks, Tayfun Tasdemir and Semigh Sayginer and Jérémy Bury. Valérie Callens, the occasional speaker, called them to the stage in the casino one by one, thanked the organization, the referees, including two ladies for the first time. And finally, Diane Wild, the organizer, expressed the hope that the Lausanne Masters will return to the calendar next year.

Dani Sánchez, after World Cup wins in Antalya and Veghel the best in Lausanne Masters as well

Tayfun Tasdemir, silver medal following Dani Sánchez

Dani Sánchez, the best player in the world in 2021

Diane Wild, the European president, looking forward to next Lausanne Masters

The final players and the lady's referee from Belgium and the Netherlands


The semi-finals overview:

Dani Sánchez-Jérémy Bury 40-32 in 22
Dani Sánchez takes off like a high speed train in the first semi-final against Jérémy Bury. Two runs, of 9 and 8 in the first five innings, give the match a fluent match start for the Spaniard, who leads 22-10 at the fast break after five. The game comes to more balance in the second part, when Bury grabs his chances to score and closes the gap. Then it goes to 28-19 after ten innings, 29-24 in the 15th, but Sánchez seizes the opportunity to reach the finish with a run of six. It takes a few more innings before the match comes to its climax. The Frenchman creeps a little closer when Sánchez is unable to score his last points. The penultimate one is a wonderful release over six cushions, the last one, an very difficult follow through shot along the short cushion, keeps the Spaniard at 39-32 for one more inning. The liberating last hit follows in the phase in which Bury remains at safe distance: 40-32 in 22 innings (1,818/1,454, runs 9 and 7.


Dani Sánchez, winning streak on the way to the final match

Jérémy Bury, not able to stop Sánchez in the semi's

Dani Sánchez, what an amazing year

Jérémy Bury

Tayfun Tasdemir-Semih Sayginer 40-38 in 34
The end of the Turkish clash results in a tactical sparring with many defensive positions and finally Tayfun Tasdemir's breakthrough after an expensive miss by Sayginer. The match is evenly matched for a long time, with a not too strong start for both rivals: 20-14 for Sayginer after 14 innings. The first attack at 31-31 comes from Sayginer, who leads 36-31 after 3 and 2. Tasdemir senses danger, makes a 6 and taps the score to his advantage: 37-36. On that score, the tactical game breaks loose: it's 37-37, Sayginer breaks through the defence for the first time with a nice five-cushion but misses his second point, which is just to short in the middle of the long cushion. Tasdemir faces an open position, gets his first match ball, but sees it disappear into a small corner. Sayginer's new chance is not taken, after which Tasdemir goes for an unmissable position to decide the match at 40-38 in 34.

Tayfun Tasdemir, winner in the match with Sayginer

Semih Sayginer, beaten in the final sprint by Tasdemir

Tayfun Tasdemir

Semih Sayginer

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My Comments

Prize for winner and other ranks?
Was it informed in other past article? I can't find the prize money information of LBM.
Could Kozoom or anyone who knows respond me? Thank you!

Message 1/1 - Publish at November 27, 2021 9:47 AM

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