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Carom Billiard - 3-Cushion - Invitational Tournament - Wonju (KOR)

Jaspers first to make a play for Korean millions

Posted by on July 17, 2021

Jaspers first to make a play for Korean millions

© Five&Six, compilation Ton Smilde
The four final players at the World Grand Prix: Jaspers, Kim, Blomdahl, Hwang

WONJU - The final battle for the Korean millions will be between two European greats and two Korean outsiders at the World 3Cushion Grand Prix in Korea tomorrow, Sunday. 56 year old Dutchman Dick Jaspers has already assured of a place in the final match at 15.00 in Korea, 8.00 on the early Sunday morning in Western Europe. The matches are scheduled invented especially for this tournament. Jaspers' opponents are Torbjörn Blomdahl, Bong-ju Hwang or Jun Tae Kim. These three players must decide in the play-offs in the hours before who will face Jaspers in the golden match. The winner will receive 100 million Korean Won, the equivalent of 74.000 euros, the number two makes 50 million (37.000 euros), the numbers three and four go back home with 25 million and 17.5 million.

The marathon of matches, which started with 32 players, comes to a climax this Sunday. The first matches between the top three ranked player and the fourth (Blomdahl and Kim) and the winner of that match against the number two (Hwang) are played to two sets won. The final is played to three sets won. The three final matches are on Sunday, Korean time, at 10.00, 12.00 and 15.00 (seven hours later than in Western Europe).

Dick Jaspers, after his last victory (against Blomdahl, 2-0) finished first with 15 match points, an average of 2,173 and highest run of 13. Bong-Ju Hwang, the dark horse until this tournament, also finished with 15 match points, 1,869 average and highest run of 12. Hwang beat Lütfi Cenet in his last match 2-1. Jun Tae Kim was third after winning against Tayfun Tasdemir 2-1, Torbjörn Blomdahl dropped from first to fourth place by losing to Jaspers. That means for the Swede, that he has to win three matches to finally win the tournament. ''It's the place nobody wanted'', Blomdahl said on the day before the final weekend. He meant to say that this player has to survive the most matches of the whole field.

Dick Jaspers closed the regular, last competition with 8 players with two precious victories over Coklu (2-0, 2,250) and Blomdahl (2-0, 1,777), finishing with a 2.247 overall average. Tayfun Tasdemir, who finished in eighth and last place, also averaged two, just like Jaspers.

The four Turks were eliminated for a place in the best four: Semih Sayginer was the only one who still had a little chance, after he had beaten Coklu 2-1 (curious 13-12 in the deciding set), but because Tasdemir lost to Jun Tae Kim in his last match, Sayginer remained in fifth place.

The Turkish prince, who would have liked to be on the final podium, confessed afterwards: ''We are happy that we finished in the best eight with the four Turks, but I am also happy that we can finally go home. This was so long, so many days, come'on, this was not normal. Not only were we locked up in the quarantine at first, also later also in the hotel because we had to play so many matches. The initiative is great, we were very happy that we could finally play billiards again. And I hope there will be more of these tournaments, but please not for so many days. The feeling of homesickness is enormous, we long for home.''

The foursome of finalists still face another important final day at the Hotel Inter Burgo in Wonju. The apotheosis has brought two European routines and top guns on the final stage: Dick Jaspers is 56 and four times world champion, Torbjörn Blomdahl is 58 and six times world champion. The two Korean finalists are relatively unknown, although 26-year-old Jun Tae Kim has already launched himself as the coming man. He has won, among other things, the first and the final Survival tournament of the Five&Six organisation. Bong-Ju Hwang is 38, the number 10 on the Korean ranking list, but a complete unknown player on the international circuit.

The final matches (Korean time, seven hours later than Western Europe):
10.00: Blomdahl-Kim
12.00: Winner against Hwang
15.00: Final

The final ranking of the last final group with 8 players:
1 Dick Jaspers 15-2,173-13
2 Bong-ju Hwang 15-1,869-9
3 Jun Tae Kim 13-1,757-12
4 Torbjörn Blomdahl 12-1,822-11
5 Semih Sayginer 10-1,884-12
6 Lütfi Cenet 7-1,654-10
7 Murat Naci Coklu 6-1,723-10
8 Tayfun Tasdemir 4-2,000-18


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