Retrieved from an earlier post on the World Cup of Pool from Matchroom: “All 32 teams confirmed as they do battle for the lucrative prize pot of $250,000 plus the pride of representing their country in one of the sports most unique format with Spain looking to defend their title on home soil at Pazo de Ferias y Congresos de Lugo with WNT No.1 Francisco Sanchez Ruiz and two-time World Pool Masters winner David Alcaide. As hosts, Spain will also field a B side in Jose Alberto Delgado and Jonas Souto Comino, with the pair looking to make their mark as a seeded team.
15 of the 16 countries qualified via the World Nineball Tour after the conclusion of the World Pool Championship in February, with 2021 champions Germany set to see Joshua Filler from that winning team pair up with rising star and WNT No. 30 Moritz Neuhausen. Austria’s two-time winning duo of Albin Ouschan and Mario He are reunited, whilst the Ko brothers will compete once again to do battle as they look to add to the one star on the Chinese Taipei jersey.
Mohammad Soufi’s incredible run to the World Pool Championship final has earned Syria a debut World Cup of Pool spot with Zaid Al Shariti joining the WNT No. 12. Great Britain’s charge for the title will be led by Jayson Shaw alongside Elliott Sanderson, who will represent the red, white and blue for a second time.”
The players begin the match on a Rasson table with new felt and 4-inch pockets at the Pazo de Feiras e Congresos de Lugo, Spain.
Day One, Round One:
The defending Champions, Francisco Sanchez Ruiz & David Alcaide of Spain A, were the first match out of the gates and lost the match to Johann Chua and James Aranas representing the Philippines with a final score of 7-5. Spain A won the first rack after Ruiz broke but lost the last rack of the match. The Philippines answered back with a break and run of their own to level the contest after four racks.
According to Matt Lynch of Matchroom Multi Sport, “Spain got the better of the opening racks to lead 2-0, and it looked to be the start of a routine performance for the 2022 champions, but Aranas and Chua were there to crash the party. The Philippines took the following three racks, and the contest was turned on its head with the best exchange of the match to come in the sixth. The Philippines left a brilliant hook to hide the cue ball from the two, but Alcaide proceeded to nail a jump shot to clean up and allow Spain back for three apiece and then a lead at 5-3 and be two away from the finish line.
The young duo of Aranas and Chua held firm despite some shaky moments and seized upon an uncharacteristic error from Sanchez Ruiz on the two ball when looking to find position for a 3-9 combination. Spain didn’t have a look in when the Pinoy boys got going from there, with the scores level at 5-5. Errors were the downfall of Spain’s efforts, and it allowed the Philippines back in to settle up 7-5 and set up a tie with either Spain or Saudi Arabia in the second round.”
Sharik Sayed and Aloysius Yapp of Singapore are playing against Greece’s Alex Kazakis and Nick Ekonomopoulos. Team Singapore was the first to get to the hill after Yapp potted the Nineball. The score is 6-4 in favor of Singapore, and the tensions are high with Greece at the table, knowing that if they make a mistake, Singapore will prevail. The score is 6-5. Singapore and Greece got a ball in hand after Sharik scratched, trying to pot the two-ball in a tricky shot. Nikos breaks in the deciding rack and breaks dry. Yapp has certainly shown his talents and made the winning shot on the 9-ball with the final score of 7-6 Singapore! Singapore will be back to play Syria or China.
Canada’s Hall OF Famer Alex Pagulayan and John Morra make quite the entrance, with Pagulayan dancing on the way to the table! Team Myanmar players are Phone Myint Kwaw and Thaw Zin Htet. Canada wins the lag to open the match. Alex Pagulayan gets the first point on a beautiful 2-9 combo! In rack four, Morra makes a precise jump shot on the five, then Pagulayan jumps, hits the six, and pots the 7. The score is now 2-2. Alex Pagulayan wins the game with a 5-9 combo after a string of mistakes during the match! John Morra has been supportive of his teammate! The two are having fun and will go on to play either Germany or New Zealand.
Day One Round 2
Albania’s Eklent Kaci and Besar Spahiu have had the lead, and in the seventh rack, Besar gets a Golden Break. Eklent Kaci makes a perfect bank shot on the two ball. Now Peru’s Gerson Martinez and Christopher Tevez are fighting back, taking the score to 3-6. Peru is holding on to a glimmer of hope! The end is nigh for Peru as Kaci delivers the final nineball to its rightful home! Winning the game 7-3 Albania. Albania will be back to play Poland or Serbia.
Austria's Albin Ouscahn and Mario He are not going down without a fight, and as Karl Boyce says, “Things can turn in a blink of an eye!” The score is 5-6 Australia, but Austria has the table and is making precision shots! Austria has one three in a row and joins the hill with Australia with the tied score of 6-6, and Austria has the table! Australia missed the four-ball, and Mario He pots the five. Albin powers the six ball in and leaves Mario the seven ball: just the eight and the nine left. Mario pots the nine, and Austria wins the match! 7-6! Austria will be back to play Hungary or Bosnia.
The Countries and players