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Carom Billiard - 3-Cushion - World Cup - Matosinhos (POR)

Short, stylish opening ceremony in Matosinhos

Posted by on July 1, 2011

Short, stylish opening ceremony in Matosinhos

© Kozoom photo
The opening ceremony with Dick Jaspers and Eddy Merckx at the background.

The tribunes of the Centro de Congresses e Desportos were slowly filled in the early morning hours, in the corridors to the dressing rooms the players had the dressing control by Jean Claude Dupont, the president of the UMB, hmself. Frédéric Caudron wiped for a while through his short hair and asked: ,,Am I looking good?''

Peter Ceulemans said this morning: ,,I don't like opening ceremonies, so I'm a little later, but I leave only tomorrow, from 12.00 I come supporting the Belgian players.''

 The Korean players were outside for a short smoke break, the Japanese Ruiiji Umeda just had a nice chat with Torbjörn Blomdahl and Jorge Alipio, the organizer was very busy preparing the opening ceremony for the main tournament.

The rumors on the first day? The Dutch top team, the multiple champion and cup holder, Van Donge en De Roo, with Dick Jaspers, Martin Horn, Torbjörn Blomdahl and Jean van Erp, has withdrawn for the competition next season on a meeting with the teamleaders last night. The reason is known: the champion  does not agree any longer with the setup of the league: a double round and at the end playoffs with the top four teams. Piet Luck, the team leader, announced the decision of his team. For now, the withdrawal is only verbally, the written confirmation must follow.

Torbjörn Blomdahl did not yet want to comment: ,,I want to hear it from the team leader what happened last night, not from messages which are put on facebook. That doesn't interest me, I'm not going to respond now.''

Another persistent rumor: John Loncelle, the Belgian billiard player who was suspected of using cocaine after an control last year, can look forward to a long suspension (the verdict would be even eight years) and has the time until July 16 to appeal. The verdict has not been confirmed in official circles. Jean Claude Dupont, president of the UMB, the world association: ,,It can be true, the suspension of eight years, that's the new rule. If there has been a decision now, it will have been done by the doping authorities. I'm not informed about, we must wait to hear it from the Dutch League. The suspension, in that case, will certainly be internationally. And then it will have major consequences for the Belgian league.''

A little luck for the player: until last year there was a lifetime suspension for a repeat offense. That has been reduced to eight years, but even that is a long time for the billiards player.

But back to the World Cup in Matosinhos, it deserves a lot more attention these days. The opening of the tournament brought 32 billiard players in the arena, who start today to the knockout stages. Dick Jaspers opens the tournament against the Vietnamese Anh Vu Duong, Martin Horn against Eddy Leppens, Jérémy Bury against Javier Palazón and Torbjörn Blomdahl against Jean Paul de Bruijn.''

Nikos Polychronopoulos already has forseen: ,,If I win against Murat Naci Coklu today, then I will meet probably my compatriot Filipos Kasidokostas.'' A Greek collision, like the Belgian between Eddy Merckx and Jef Philipoom, but Merckx have to win his match with Dong Gung Kang first and Jef Philipoom has to beat the Portugese Pedro Pais.

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