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Carom Billiard - 3-Cushion - European Championship - Berlicum (NED)

Dani Sánchez dethrones Jaspers at Europeans in Holland

Posted by on June 18, 2022

Dani Sánchez dethrones Jaspers at Europeans in Holland

© Ton Smilde
The final podium with Dani Sánchez, Dick Jaspers, Semih Sayginer and Martin Horn

BERLICUM - Dani Sánchez is the new European champion in three cushion after winning the final match against Dick Jaspers. The 48-year-old Spaniard captured the title in the country of the multiple winner Jaspers, who is world champion and by far number one of the world rankings. The European title race started in the Benelux Theatre in Berlicum, Brabant, with 64 players from the European billiard countries, of which Dani Sánchez stood on the podium at the end with Dick Jaspers, Semih Sayginer and Martin Horn. ''I'm very proud of this title'', said Sánchez, for whom it was his fourth European title.

Dick Jaspers confessed after the final: '',,I've played a lot of finals in big tournaments for a few years now and it is getting harder and harder to stay ahead of the fierce competition. The top of three cushion gets stronger every year and players like Merckx, Zanetti, Horn, Blomdahl, Sayginer and certainly Dani Sánchez are dangerous and feared opponents. I do have a big lead on the world ranking, but that means nothing about my chances in a final. You don't win a European fight so easily, Dani Sánchez turned out to be the well deserved winner''.

The Spanish winner realized afterwards that he had succeeded in putting Jaspers under pressure during the whole final. ''I often play my best games against Dick Jaspers, who I consider by far the best billiard player in the world. And of course it inspires me to win against this champion. It is even more nice when it happensd in the Netherlands, the country where I started my international billiard career in famous teams, like with Blomdahl and Sayginer. I like to play in Holland and this year, after ten years, I will finally return to the national competition for five matches with the SIS Schoonmaak team. That is a nice prospect. The Netherlands is a real billiard country that I like, of course not as big and with so many players as in Korea and Vietnam. But I feel at home here and I have many friends.''

Dani Sánchez also picked up his best form in the arena at the European Championship in Berlicum ''The championship was played for years in a big sports hall in Brandenburg. I did not like that billiard atmosphere, this championship in the Netherlands was as it should be played''.

The Spaniard first defeated Martin Horn in a tough semi-final and faced Dick Jaspers, who had eliminated Semih Sayginer. The final fight did not show the best Jaspers. ''Dani had a perfect start'', was Jaspers' comment later. ''He is a seasoned player, just like me, who is often strong in finals. This time he was better than me, I admit, I could not fight back, but I am proud to be in a final again.''

The Spaniard went to a margin quite quickly with a run of 9 in the second inning, and saw Jaspers come back slightly to 26-19 in the tenth. When Jaspers also hit a 9 late in the match, an exciting finish seemed imminent, but Sánchez kept scoring strongly (8, 6 and 5) and Jaspers lacked the last energy to threaten the Spaniard: 50-35 in 19/18 innings, 2.631/1.944.

The final European ranking:

1 Dani Sánchez 10-2.192-9

2 Dick Jaspers 8-2.373-12

3 Semih Sayginer 6-2.127-13

3 Martin Horn 6-1.828-13

5 Marco Zanetti 4-1,815-14

6 Jean Paul de Bruijn 8-1.366-9

7 Berkay Karakurt 7-1.614-10

8 Dion Nelin 4-1,741-9

9 Tayfun Tasdemir 2-1.725-12

10 Eddy Merckx 2-1.455-8

11 Michael Nilsson 2-1.576-19

12 Rui Manuel Costa 6-1.572-10

13 Raymund Swertz 6-1.330-7

14 Peter Ceulemans 2-1.392-8

15 Dave Christiani 6-1.339-10

16 Lütfi Cenet 2-1.433-10

17 Jeffrey Jorissen 4-1.802-8

18 Ronny Lindemann 3-1.613-11

19 Murat Naci Coklu 0-1.727-11

20 Nikos Polychronopoulos 0-1.653-6.

Best average:
Dick Jaspers, 2.373
Best run: Michael Nilsson, 19.



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