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Kings Cup: Visiting West builds 4-2 lead after Day 1



The captains expected the Kings Cup to be intense from the get-go, and momentum swung in favor of Team West as the squad took a 4-2 lead after Day 1 of the competition at Resorts World Manila.

Shane Van Boening capped an improbable comeback by storming past Django Bustamante in a hill-hill battle, 5-4, in the singles match which gave Team West a 3-2 lead in the overall tally.

Team West then took charge with a 5-3 win in the triples match between Albin Ouschan/Mika Immonen/Shane Van Boening and Team Asia’s Efren Reyes/Ko Pin Yi/Ko Ping Chung.

The tournament continues with six more matches lined up on Day 2, November 20, Friday.

The first side to win 10 matches will take home the inaugural Kings Cup.

Below is a recap of all matches.

Match 1 – 4 on 4

Team Asia – Reyes/Bustamante/Ko/Ko
Team West – Immonen/Appleton/Van Boening/Ouschan

West wins, 5-2

Team West went on to take a 4-nil lead in the very first match as a dry break by Ko Pin Yi opened the first rack, allowing West to take the first two racks.

In the third rack, Team Asia managed to pocket a ball during the break, but a failed safety by Ko Pin Yi on the 1-ball led to a 1-10 combination from Shane Van Boening.

Team West had a run out in the fourth rack, and the team had a chance to sweep Team Asia when Efren Reyes had another dry break in the fifth rack.

Mika Immonen however, missed an open 4-ball, which led to Team Asia finally taking a rack. In the sixth, Albin Ouschan also missed an open 4-ball and Team Asia was able to clean it out to cut the deficit down to 4-2.

But in the seventh rack, Django Bustamante missed a 2-9-10 three-ball combination, even as Shane Van Boening pocketed the 2 and 3-balls before going with a 4-10 combo to seal the win.

Match 2 – Doubles

Team Asia – Ko/Ko
Team West – Immonen/Van Boening

Asia wins, 5-2

In the second match, Team Asia bounced back through the reigning World Cup of Pool winning tandem Ko Pin Yi and Ko Ping Chung.

Misses by Immonen on easy shots in the second and third racks allowed Team Asia to take a 3-0 lead.

In the fourth rack, Van Boening failed to hide the 3-ball on a safety attempt, leading to another rack for Team Asia, 4-0.

Team West finally got on the board in the fifth rack. In the sixth rack, Ko Pin Yi missed a difficult cut shot on the 5-ball to the side pocket, as West cut the lead down to 4-2.

But in the seventh rack, Van Boening again failed to make a safety shot and Team Asia managed to close it out for the 5-2 win.

Match 3 – Doubles

Team Asia – Reyes/Bustamante
Team West – Appleton/Ouschan

West wins, 5-2

The Filipino duo of Reyes and Bustamante succumbed in their doubles match to Darren Appleton and Albin Ouschan.

The first four racks were all run outs as Asia and West were deadlocked at 2 apiece.

But in the fifth rack, a miss by Reyes on the 3-ball gave a chance for West to turn things around. Ouschan however, also missed the 3-ball.

Asia pocketed the next three balls but Bustamante rushed a 6-10 combination. Appleton took care of the 6-ball although Ouschan missed an open 7-ball. Reyes however, failed to sink the same ball as West cleaned the rest of the fifth rack.

West then took the final two racks — one a run out and the other a 7-10 combination after Reyes missed the 7-ball in the seventh rack.

Match 4 – Singles

Team Asia – Ko Pin Yi
Team West – Appleton

Asia wins, 5-0.

Team Asia again bounced back to tie the overall score at 2-all after Ko Pin Yi showed a masterful performance against Appleton.

Ko, the reigning 9-ball and 10-ball world champion and no. 1 ranked pool player in the world, showcased a methodical way of out-pointing the England’s Appleton.

After taking the first rack easily, Ko capitalized on Appleton’s miss at a partly-hidden 1-ball in the second rack.

Ko did miss a 5-ball in the third rack, giving Appleton a chance to score but the latter missed a 5-9 combination as Ko made it 3-nil.

A dry break by Appleton in the fourth led to another rack for Ko before the Taiwanese star finished the match in the fifth rack.

Match 5 – Singles

Team Asia – Bustamante
Team West – Van Boening

West wins, 5-4

In what was the most exciting match yet of the Kings Cup, American Van Boening overcame a 3-0 hole and stunned Bustamante in a momentum-changing victory which gave Team West the upperhand.

Bustamante had an impressive shot in the opening rack, bouncing the cue ball off two rails before making contact with the 5-ball to clean the first.

Van Boening tried to do a jump shot on the hidden 4-ball in the second rack, put did not pocket the target as Bustamante took two more racks for a commanding 3-nil lead.

Van Boening had a run out on the fourth rack to get on the board, before stealing the fifth away from Bustamante. Bustamante was on his way to making it 4-1 but the legend missed on an open 9-ball, as Van Boening cut the deficit down to 3-2.

Van Boening surged ahead in the next two racks, as Bustamante had a dry break in the seventh. Van Boening took a 4-3 lead but scratched on the break in the eighth rack, allowing Bustamante to tie the match at 4 apiece.

Bustamante had a golden chance to recover when Van Boening missed on the 2-ball, but Bustamante scratched and West was able to complete the comeback.

Match 6 – Triples

Team Asia – Ko/Ko/Reyes
Team West – Immonen/Ouschan/Van Boening

West wins, 5-3

Team West was able to assert control in the final match to give the side a 4-2 lead after the opening day.

A missed cut shot by Ko Pin Chung on the 5-ball in the third rack allowed West to steal it, and the team followed it by a run-out in the fourth for a 4-0 lead.

West had a chance to sweep it in the fifth but Ouschan had a bad shot after the Ko Pin Chung safety on the 8-ball.

Asia took the next two racks although it was the final time they took the table as West had a run-out in the eighth rack for the win.