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Previews with the sixteen Dutch Masters players

Posted by on April 22, 2021

Previews with the sixteen Dutch Masters players

© Ton Smilde
Four of the main contenders at the Masters: Jeffrey Jorissen, Barry van Beers, Dick Jaspers and Jean van Erp

BERLICUM - For sixteen billiard players from the top of the Dutch ranking, the Masters comes to the kick-off next Sunday (25 April) in Berlicum. Five days later (three days of preliminaries, two days of finals), the new Dutch champion is on the stage of the Benelux Theatre. Dick Jaspers won the last four times in finals against Glenn Hofman, Harrie van de Ven, Jean van Erp and Barry van Beers. How does he look at the Masters himself and how do his rivals rate their chances?

The youngest player is Joey de Kok (24), the oldest Harrie van de Ven, who turns 60 on the final day. The l6-bunch consists of one player in his twenties, four in their thirties, four in their forties and seven in their fifties. Three players make their debut at the Masters: Joey de Kok (24), Jack van Peer (54) and Ludo Kools (53). Three players of sixteen field have won the Masters before: Dick Jaspers 20 times, Raimond Burgman 4 times and Jean van Erp 1 time.

Harry Mathijssen and Ad Smout are the organizers with BEN for the eighth time, twice in Kaatsheuvel, now for the sixth time in Berlicum. The Masters was played 12 times in Veghel (1993 till 2006).

On the eve, we asked the sixteen finalists about their expectations. Who is smoking hot, who will fire up his level and hit the bull's eye.

Group A:

Dick Jaspers (55), Sint Willebrord
32nd Masters
''I am happy that I can play matches again after only training and I will go for the best. Hopefully it will be the last Masters we play under these conditions. I am looking forward to this special format with future perspective, sets of 10 points, 30 seconds of playing time.''

Raimond Burgman (56), Heemstede
31st Masters
''I'll take a shot at my fifth Masters title, if I can do that, it would be fantastic.''

Harrie van de Ven (59), Bergeijk
20th Masters
''I will turn 60 on the final day, so I hope to celebrate a nice birthday. After three second places, I hope to finish first, however, it'll be a hard fight. But if you don't aim that, you shouldn't participate.''

Frans van Schaik (56), Hoofddorp
10th Masters
''My group in the preliminary round is not the easiest, but I must start with a win over Harrie van de Ven and then beat Raimond, because the Mr 007 guy is not that strong at RP Viscose cloth. So, I will like last year try to reach the quarter finals, that will be difficult enough.''

Group B:

Jeffrey Jorissen (36), The Hague
11th Masters
''I am going for only one spot and that is the highest step on stage.''

Joey de Kok (24), Lewedorp
1st Masters
I'm really looking forward to my debut at the Masters. I practiced a lot for it, so cannot blame myself. To be honest, I hope that I can come through the group stage, but actually I will mainly try to enjoy.''

Martien van der Spoel (39), Nijmegen
9th Masters
''I don't have any expectations, because I haven't been able to train in this Corona era. I especially want to enjoy being able to play again. And maybe I can surprise with these short sets, where everything is possible.''

Jack van Peer (54), Berkel-Enschot
1st Masters
''For my first Masters, I would like to get through the group stage and see what is possible. I am really looking forward to it, however it's too bad to play without spectators.''

Group C:

Jean van Erp (47), Heeswijk Dinther
19th Masters
''The only thing that counts is to finish as the new Master 2021, everything else will be a disappointment. I have practiced a lot, also worked to be in a good shape. We may expect surprising and exciting matches.''

Raymund Swertz (32), Afferden
4th Masters
I expect a great tournament, because we can finally return into the arena. I am really looking forward to these Masters.''

Roland Uijtdewillegen (50), Veldhoven
13th Masters
''I will try to play more impulsively, because of the new set-up with short sets and 30 seconds without time-out. My feeling is that this can turn out very positive. I will go for it full speed.''

Huub Wilkowski (44), Sint Michielsgestel
11th Masters
''I will try to cope with the new circumstances as well as I can. My preparation was very good, I feel strong. It feels like smoking hot.''
Group D:

Dave Christiani (41), Bemmel
12th Masters
,,The system is new, I haven't played a match in a while, so hard to estimate. I have been practicing well, so I hope to be able to be among the best.''

Barry van Beers (45), Rijsbergen
17th Masters
''I feel really in good shape, the table and the venue are great and I am as well prepared as I can be. I start with the motto: I'm in it, to win it.''

Kay de Zwart (32), Roosendaal
4th Masters
''My goal is to do better than two years ago. Then, I reached the quarter finals. I have prepared myself well.''

Ludo Kools (53), Hoogerheide
1st Masters
''We meet each other in short sets and nobody has rhythm. If I play well, I can get through the preliminaries, because in the last Grand Prix we played, I won against Jorissen and Burgman. There is a chance of course, that I will beat some better players again.''


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