Jesper Svensson Ends Two-Year Title Drought, Defeats Sean Rash to Win PBA-WBT Thailand Open

by Bill Vint September 28, 2019 08:02

BANGKOK, Thailand – Sweden’s Jesper Svensson defeated Sean Rash of Montgomery, Illinois, 211-181, to win the PBA International-WBT Thailand Open at Blu-O Paragon Saturday for his first PBA Tour title since 2017.

Behind a near-perfect start to the final qualifying round to earn the top berth for the Thailand stepladder finals, Svensson, a left-handed two-handed player, picked up his eighth career PBA Tour title along with a $32,258 first prize.

(PBA.com feature photo: from left, runner-up Sean Rash, winner Jesper Svensson, third-place finisher Ryan Ciminelli. Photo by Terence Yaw courtesy of Asian Bowling Federation)

The 24-year-old Swedish star rolled games of 289, 300, 290, 218, 279 and 195 for a 1,571 pinfall total in the final six-game qualifying round to win the top spot in the stepladder finals by a stunning 217 pins over Rash.

Svensson also won the Thailand Open title in 2016. He won last title in the 2017 PBA Cheetah Championship during the PBA World Series of Bowling IX in Reno, Nevada.

The PBA Tour’s final two tournaments on the 2019 Go Bowling! PBA Tour and World Bowling Tour schedule are the U.S. Open – the season’s final major – Oct. 23-30 at Victory Lanes Family Entertainment Center in Mooresville, North Carolina, and the PBA-WBT Kuwait Open at Kuwait Bowling Center in Kuwait City, Oct. 31-Nov. 6.

PBA INTERNATIONAL-WBT THAILAND
Blu-O Paragon, Bangkok, Thailand, Sept. 28

Final Standings:
1, Jesper Svensson, Sweden, $32,258.
2, Sean Rash, Montgomery, Ill., $16,129.
3, Ryan Ciminelli, Lancaster, S.C., $9,677.
4, Dom Barrett, England, $6,451.
5, Jojoe Yannaphon, Thailand, $3,225.
6, Cheah Ray Han, Singapore, $2,903.
7, Liz Johnson, Palatine, Ill., $2,741.
8, Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, $2,580.

Stepladder Results:
Match One – Yannaphon (225) def. Johnson (193) and Malott (182).
Match Two – Ciminelli (220) def. Yannaphon (216) and Cheah (186).
Match Three – Ciminelli def. Barrett, 206-184.
Semifinal – Rash def. Ciminelli, 209-208.
Championship – Svensson def. Rash, 211-181.

Round 4 Cashers (after 6 games, top 6 plus top Thailand and top woman qualifiers advanced to stepladder finals):
1, Svensson, 1,571.
2, Rash, 1,354.
3, Barrett, 1,348.
4, Ciminelli, 1,327.
5, Cheah, 1,319.
6, Malott, 1,307.
7, y-Yannaphon, 1,270.
8, w-Johnson, 1,257.
    y-Yannaphon qualified 13th but automatically advanced as the highest finishing Thailand player in the field; w-Johnson qualified 14th but automatically advanced as the highest finishing woman in the field.

Failed to advance ($2,258 each):
9, Kyle Troup, Taylorsville, N.C., 1,300.
10, Mitch Hupé, Canada, 1,282.
11, Darren Tang, Las Vegas, 1,281.
12, Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., 1.279.
13, Osku Palermaa, Finland, 1,276.
14, Anthony Simonsen, Little Elm, Texas, 1,271.
15, Chong Jun Foo, Malaysia, 1,211.
16, Wu Siu Hong, Hong Kong, 1,206.
17, Michael Tang, San Francisco, 1,204.
18, Ahmad Muaz, Malaysia, 1,197.
19, Danielle McEwan, Stony Point, N.Y., 1,167.
20, AJ Johnson, Oswego, Ill., 1,107.

Round 3 Cashers (after six games, $1,612 each):
21, Wesley Low, Palmdale, Calif., 1,248.
22 (tie), Michael Mak, Hong Kong, and Shota Kawazoe, Japan, 1,239.
24, Rafiq Ismail, Malaysia, 1,236.
25, Remy Ong, Singapore, 1,234.
26, Kris Prather, Plainfield, Ill., 1,228.
27, Chris Barnes, Double Oak, Texas, 1,224.
28, Tannya Roumimper, Indonesia, 1,211.
29, Kim Bolleby, Thailand, 1,208.
30, Francois Lavoie, Canada, 1,206.
31, Greg Young, Viera, Fla., 1,175.
32, Atchariya Cheng, Thailand, 1,174.
33, Jazreel Tan, Singapore, 1,156.
34, Zulmazran Zulkifli, Malaysia, 1,091.

Round 2 Cashers (after six games, $1,290 each):
35, Surasak Manuwong, Thailand, 11,187.
36, Nur Syazwani Sahar, Malaysia, 1,182.
37, Bryanna Coté, Red Rock, Ariz., 1,178.
38, Kamron Doyle, Brentwood, Tenn., 1,163.
39, Ryan Lalisang, Indonesia, 1,148.
40, Kyle Sherman, O’Fallon, Mo., 1,141.
41, Billy Islam, Indonesia, 1,141.
42, Pasut Punsanthaveekul, Thailand, 1,059.

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EJ Tackett, Liz Johnson Win World Bowling Tour Men’s, Women’s Finals Titles

by Bill Vint March 10, 2019 21:03

ARLINGTON, Texas – It took EJ Tackett a gold-medal performance in the 2018 World Bowling Men’s Championships just to sneak into the World Bowling Tour Men’s Finals, and then it took a clutch 10th-frame strike to lock up a one-pin victory over top qualifier Anthony Simonsen at the International Training and Research Center.

The WBT Men’s and Women’s Finals, presented by the PBA, aired Sunday on FS1, concluding a year-long global competition. Liz Johnson of Palatine, Ill., won the women’s title, defeating top qualifier Danielle McEwan of Stony Point, N.Y., 246-223, for her first WBT Finals win in six tries.

Tackett, who made his WBT Men’s Finals debut after winning the all-events gold medal in the World Bowling Men’s Championships in Hong Kong, eliminated England’s Stuart Williams in another single-pin thriller, 243-242, before spoiling Simonsen’s 22nd birthday, 233-232, in the title match.

The WBT Finals again used World Bowling’s experimental “current frame” scoring system where a strike counted for 30 pins, a spare counted for 10 plus the first-ball count, and an open frame counted for actual pins knocked down. The 10th frame counted the same as all other frames.

Tackett, who led Simonsen by 11 pins after eight frames, left the 4-6-10 split and opened in the ninth to open the door for the young Texas two-hander, who bowled the match using a reverse-hook technique from the left side of the lane. Simonsen, who won the 2018 PBA Xtra Frame Gene Carter’s Pro Shop Classic in Delaware using the “backup ball” technique, converted the 8 pin for a spare in the ninth to close to within a single pin. The Little Elm, Texas resident then struck in the 10th frame to force Tackett to also strike for the win.

“This format is interesting because when you get to the 10th frame, you know you only have one shot,” Tackett said. “You have one chance to do it right, and fortunately, I threw a good shot. It’s absolutely another nice title to have on my resumé.”

LizJohnson, who made the women’s finals for the sixth time in the event’s eight-year history, eliminated Poland’s Daria Pajak in the first match, 242-235, and threw six strikes in 10 frames in denying McEwan a third women’s title.

“Every title is special. This was my sixth WBT show, but this is my first win,” the 24-time PWBA titlist said. “Two years ago I had a chance (in the title match against McEwan), but I threw a pocket 7-10 in the 10th and lost by three pins, so that’s the closest I’ve been to winning.

“To qualify for the finals again, I really wanted to try my best,” she added. “This is not an easy format. I knew I only needed eight pins in the 10th to win, but I wanted to get as many as I could (she struck). The scoring system is different, but it’s an honor to be part of it.”

For rules and information about the 2019 World Bowling Tour schedule, visit: https://www.worldbowling.org/events-results/world-bowling-tour/

2019 WORLD BOWLING TOUR MEN’S AND WOMEN’S FINALS PRESENTED BY PBA
International Training and Research Center, Arlington, Texas (aired March 10 on FS1)
(The event used the experimental World Bowling ”current frame” scoring system: strike = 30, spare = 10 plus first ball count; open = actual pinfall; 10th frame is one frame only)

WBT WOMEN’S FINALS
Final Standings:
1, Liz Johnson, Palatine, Ill., $12,500.
2, Danielle McEwan, Stony Point, N.Y., $7,500.
3, Daria Pajak, Poland, $5,000.
Stepladder Results:
Match One – Johnson def. Pajak, 242-235.
Championship – Johnson def. McEwan, 246-223.

WBT MEN’S FINALS
Final Standings:
1, EJ Tackett, Bluffton, Ind., $12,500.
2, Anthony Simonsen, Little Elm, Texas, $7,500.
3, Stuart Williams, England, $5,000.
Stepladder Results:
Match One – Tackett def. Williams, 243-242.
Championship – Tackett def. Simonsen, 233-232.

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Anthony Simonsen, Danielle McEwan Top Three-Player Fields for Sunday’s World Bowling Tour Finals on FS1

by Bill Vint March 5, 2019 12:49

ARLINGTON, Texas – Capping a year-long points competition in the international bowling arena, PBA star Anthony Simonsen of Little Elm, Texas, and PWBA champion Danielle McEwan of Stony Point, N.Y., will lead their respective fields into the World Bowling Tour Men’s and Women’s Finals, presented by the PBA, Sunday at 10 p.m. EDT on FS1.

The WBT Men’s Finals also will include Stuart Williams of England and first-time WBT finalist EJ Tackett of Bluffton, Ind., who earned his berth after a gold-medal performance in the 2018 World Bowling Men’s Championships in Hong Kong. Rounding out the WBT Women’s Finals field will be PWBA star Liz Johnson of Palatine, Ill., who is trying for her first WBT Finals titles in her sixth appearance in the event, and Poland’s Daria Pajak, who will make her WBT Finals debut.

The WBT Men’s and Women’s Finals, presented by the PBA, will be contested at the International Training and Research Center, and will again use World Bowling’s experimental “current frame” scoring system where a strike counted for 30 pins, a spare counted for 10 plus the first-ball count, and an open frame counted for actual pins knocked down. The 10th frame counted the same as all other frames.

The WBT Finals will air on FOX Sports’ FS1 channel for the first time. FloBowling, PBA’s online video streaming partner, will live-stream the finals to its international subscribers. For subscription information, visit flobowling.com.

For details about the 2019 World Bowling Tour schedule, and rules and information about the 2019 World Bowling Tour program, visit: https://www.worldbowling.org/events-results/world-bowling-tour/

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PBA Begins Race to PBA Playoffs as Hall of Fame Classic Kicks off 2019 Go Bowling! PBA to Tour Season

by Bill Vint January 3, 2019 08:35

ARLINGTON, Texas – As the Professional Bowlers Association kicked off its 2019 Go Bowling! PBA Tour season Thursday with the first round of qualifying in the PBA Hall of Fame Classic at the International Training and Research Center, the race to qualify for the new PBA Playoffs that will be held in April in Portland, Maine, officially begins.

During the 2019 season, competition points will be awarded to all players in all PBA Tour events that are open to all players, with point values varying according to a three-tier system under a new system being introduced this season. Under the tier system, Tier 1 tournaments are major championships, Tier 2 events are standard PBA Tour events, and Tier 3 are limited field or abbreviated format events.

Here’s how the points system will work: Tier 3 tournaments establish the “base points” values starting with 2,500 for first place, 1,500 for second, 1,150 for third, 950 for fourth, 850 for fifth, etc. Points decline based upon how a player finishes in the event, but all players in the tournament will earn points. For Tier 2 events, the points values are doubled. For Tier 1 championship events, points will be worth three times the base value (i.e., 7,500 for first place, 4,500 for second, etc.) For a complete summary of the PBA’s competition points structure and tier values per tournament, visit: https://www.pba.com/SeasonStats/PointsList/114?list=1.

The PBA Hall of Fame Classic, which launches the PBA Tour’s historic season of television coverage by FOX Sports on its FOX and FS1 channels, will be the first event to offer points. The HOF Classic, which airs live on FS1 Sunday at 11 a.m. EST, is designated as a Tier 3 event because it includes a limited field (70 players) and an abbreviated format (six qualifying games for all players Thursday and Friday plus another six qualifying games for the top 18 on Saturday to determine Sunday’s top five stepladder finalists). All qualifying rounds will be live-streamed by PBA’s online streaming partner, FloBowling.

The FOX Sports portion of the 2019 schedule, concluding with the USBC Masters, will be the basis for qualifying for the PBA Playoffs. Of the 24 qualifiers, the top eight players will earn first round byes for the single-elimination match play playoffs which will reward the winner with a $100,000 prize.

Competition points also will be important for other reasons:
• Points earned during the summer tour’s USBC Cup series will qualify players for the end-of-season PBA China Tiger Cup;
• Points earned in 2019 will qualify players for invitations to the 2020 DHC PBA Japan Invitational;
• The 2019 competition points champion will win the Harry Smith Competition Points award;
• 2019 points will be considered in selecting the 2019 Chris Schenkel PBA Player of the Year and Harry Golden PBA Rookie of the Year.
• Composite points from 2018 and 2019 will determine the field for the 2019 PBA Tour Finals.

The Hall of Fame Classic field of 70 was filled during a six-game Pro Tour Qualifier at the IRTC on Tuesday. Players who advanced into the tournament proper are Canada’s Mitch Hupé with 1,493 pins, rookie Greg Young of Viera, Fla., 1,360; Brian Robinson, Morgantown, W.Va., 1,352; Justin Wyman, Fairport, N.Y., 1,336, and Nate Garcia, Port St. Lucie, Fla., 1,283.

TIER STRUCTURE FOR PBA ON FOX TOURNAMENTS
Jan. 2-6 – PBA Hall of Fame Classic, Arlington, Texas (Tier 3).
Jan. 8-13 – PBA Oklahoma Open, Shawnee, Okla. (Tier 2).
Jan. 8-13 - Mark Roth-Marshall Holman PBA Doubles Championship, Shawnee, Okla. (Tier 3).
Jan. 22-27 – PBA Lubbock Sports Open, Lubbock, Texas (Tier 2).
Feb. 5-10 – PBA Tournament of Champions, Fairlawn, Ohio (Tier 1).
Feb. 12-17 – PBA Players Championship, Columbus, Ohio (Tier 1).
Feb. 19-24 – Go Bowling! PBA Indianapolis Open, Indianapolis (Tier 2).
Feb. 26-March 3 – Go Bowling! PBA Jonesboro Open, Jonesboro, Ark. (Tier 2).
March 12, 18 – PBA World Series of Bowling X Cheetah Championship, Allen Park, Mich. (Tier 3).
March 13, 19 - PBA World Series of Bowling X Chameleon Championship, Allen Park, Mich. (Tier 3).
March 14, 20 - PBA World Series of Bowling X Scorpion Championship, Allen Park, Mich. (Tier 3).
March 12-16, 21 - PBA World Series of Bowling PBA World Championship, Allen Park, Mich. (Tier 1).
March 26-April 1 – USBC Masters, Las Vegas (Tier 1).

TIER STRUCTURE FOR PBA SUMMER TOUR/USBC CUP TOURNAMENTS
July 25-28 – Storm PBA/PWBA Striking Against Breast Cancer Mixed Doubles, Houston, Texas (Tier 3).
Aug. 9-11 – Chesapeake Open, Chesapeake, Va. (Tier 3).
Aug. 12-14 – Wilmington Open, Wilmington, N.C. (Tier 3).
Aug. 16-18 – Gene Carter’s Pro Shop Open, Middletown, Del. (Tier 3).
Aug. 21-23 – Bowlerstore Classic presented by Moxy’s Xtra Pair, Coldwater, Ohio (Tier 3).
Aug. 24-31 – FloBowling PBA Wolf Open, Aurora, Ill. (Tier 3).
Aug. 24-31 – FloBowling PBA Bear Open, Aurora, Ill. (Tier 3).
Aug. 24-31 – FloBowling PBA Aurora Open, Parkside Lanes, Aurora, Ill. (Tier 2).

TIER STRUCTURE FOR PBA FALL TOUR EVENTS
Sept. 4-9 – Storm Lucky Larsen Masters, Helsingborg, Sweden (Tier 3).
Sept. 27-Oct. 4 – Thailand Open, Bangkok, Thailand (Tier 3).
Oct. 23-30 – U.S. Open, Mooresville, N.C. (Tier 1).
Oct. 31-Nov. 6 – Kuwait Open, Kuwait City, Kuwait (Tier 3).

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PBA Spare Shots: EJ Tackett Claims Third Berth in 2019 World Bowling Tour Men’s Finals

by Bill Vint December 6, 2018 09:04

Thanks in part to a gold-medal performance in all-events in the World Bowling Men’s Championships in Hong Kong last week, EJ Tackett of Bluffton, Ind., claimed the third berth in the 2019 World Bowling Tour Men’s Finals that will be contested on Sunday, Jan. 6, at the International Research and Training Center in Arlington, Texas, for broadcast on FS1 on March 10.

Tackett will join 2018 WBT points leader Anthony Simonsen of Little Elm, Texas, and Stuart Williams of England in the men’s finals. The WBT Women’s Finals, presented by the PBA, will feature Danielle McEwan of Stony Point, N.Y.; Liz Johnson of Palatine, Ill., and Daria Pajak of Poland.

Featured photo caption: Team USA’s World Bowling Men’s Championships trios gold medalists, from left: EJ Tackett, Kyle Troup and Andrew Anderson.

On his way to winning the all-events gold medal in Hong Kong, Tackett also won gold in trios with Team USA teammates Andrew Anderson and Kyle Troup, and a silver medal in doubles with Anderson, PBA’s newly-crowned 2018 Chris Schenkel PBA Player of the Year. Anderson was also silver-medalist in all-events.

WBT Men’s and Women’s Finalists were determined based on competition points earned in WBT events during calendar year 2018. For a complete summary of World Bowling Men’s Championships results, visit worldbowling.org.

INTERNATIONAL BOWLING MUSEUM TO UNVEIL PBA HALL OF FAME EXHIBIT

The International Bowling Museum and Hall of Fame in Arlington, Texas, will unveil a new PBA Hall of Fame exhibit featuring items on loan from 2019 PBA Hall of Fame inductees Patrick Allen, Mika Koivuniemi, Bob Johnson and Jim Doty.

The PBA Hall of Fame exhibit, which will celebrate the organization’s role as the “major league of bowling in the world,” will hold its premier on Saturday, Jan. 5, in conjunction with the newest inductions. The Arlington-based IBM/HF serves as the home of the PBA Hall of Fame.

PBA REGIONAL UPDATE: MIKE BAILEY WINS BEAUMONT SOUTHWEST OPEN

Mike Bailey from Irving, Texas, defeated Anthony Lavery-Spahr of Pasadena, Texas, 258-202, in the position round final match to win the 17th annual PBA Beaumont Southwest Open at Crossroads Bowling Center in Beaumont, Texas, Sunday. The victory was Bailey’s seventh in PBA Regional competition and his second in 2018.

Bailey battled Lavery-Spahr for the lead through most of the match play finals, but trailed Lavery-Spahr by 78 pins before the final game. With the 30 bonus pins awarded for winning the match, Bailey made up the deficit with a 258-202 win to claim the $2,500 first place check.

Bailey finished the event 18 pins ahead of Lavery-Spahr’s 4,853. Houston’s David Scardaville finished in third place.

Mike Moore and non-PBA member partner Shawn Naumann, both of Orlando, Fla., defeated Cristian Azcona of Puerto Rico and non-member Justin Dunn of Deland, Fla., 451-335, in a total pinfall match to win the $4,000 first prize in the PBA South Region Member/Non-Member Doubles at Break Point Alley Bowling Center in Tavares, Fla., Sunday.

Moore and Naumann won six of their eight matches and finished with a 16-game total of 7,042 pins to qualify first. Azcona and Dunn, who shared $2,000 for second place, eliminated Dave Stouffer of Lehigh Acres, Florida, and Lee Rathjen of Naples, Fla., 446-377, in the first stepladder match.

Harry Sullins of Chesterfield Twp., Mich., defeated top qualifier Mike Steil of Wheeling, Ill., 224-194, to win the PBA50 Victory Lanes Midwest/Central Open at Victory Lanes in Kankakee, Ill., Sunday. The tournament was Rich Weber’s final tournament as PBA Midwest Region tournament manager. Weber will officially retire on December 31.

Sullins, who earned $1,500 along with his 36th overall PBA Regional title and his fourth at Victory Lanes, defeated Gary Alstott of Washington, Ill., 267-214, in the semifinal game to advance to the championship match after Alstott eliminated Brian Kretzer of Dayton, Ohio, 234-221, in the first match.

Scott Kinkaid of Elizabethtown, Pa., defeated Steven Kotowski of Clark, N.J., 278-236, to win the PBA MJK Pro Shop/Knob Hill Eastern Challenge presented by Brunswick in Manalapan, N.J., on Saturday.

PBA Challenge events are open to any member or non-member who has never won a PBA event.

Kinkaid, a 44-year-old non-PBA member, was bowling in his 12th PBA event. He qualified sixth and then dominated the field in the bracket elimination finals. He posted 6-1 record, averaging 262.4 over the seven games. Kotowski, also a non-member who was competing in only his second PBA event, posted a 5-2 record.

Kinkaid earned $1,500 for the win, but does not receive credit for a PBA Regional title because he is a non-member.

In the semifinal matches, Kinkaid topped Michael Markis of Tafton, Pa., 269-234, and Kotowski defeated Jeremy Milito of Holbrook, N.Y., 223-214.

● The PBA50 Timber Lanes East Open, originally scheduled for the Dec. 7-9 weekend in Oxford, Pa., has been postponed until 2019.

● As the PBA heads toward the year-end holidays, a limited schedule of PBA Regional competition is on tap for the Dec. 14-16 weekend, including the Reality Check/CareHawk South Classic at Sawgrass Lanes in Tamarac, Fla., and the Warren Harley-Davidson Central-East Challenge for non-title winners at Freeway Lanes of Warren, Ohio.

● Closing out PBA’s 2018 regional calendar will be the PBA50/PBA Houston Emerald Bowl Doubles presented by Bowling Dynamix over the Dec. 21-23 weekend, and the PBA Japan Region’s Scorpion and Women’s Scorpion Open tournaments at Tokyo Hagashiyamato Grand Bowl.

● For complete PBA Regional schedules, rules and entry information, visit pba.com, open the “schedules” tab and click on PBA Regional Tours to find the event(s) in your area…and remember, you can follow “live scoring” for all PBA Regional events on pba.com (easily accessible for Apple and Android device users using the PBA app).

QUICK NOTES:

Del Ballard Jr., recipient of the 2017 PBA Tony Reyes Memorial Community Service Award, and wife Carolyn Dorin-Ballard have announced a $72,000 contribution to Cancer Care Services in the wake of their annual “Ballard Vs. The Big C” fund-raiser in Dallas.

Chris Barnes, the 2018 PBA Tony Reyes Memorial Community Service Award recipient, and wife Lynda drew a field of 241 participations for their 14th annual Barnes Thanksgiving Classic tournament at Plano Super Bowl in the Dallas area, awarding a total of $17,750 in scholarships.

Correction: the correct dates for the 20th anniversary Striking Against Breast Cancer Mixed Doubles tournament in Houston, Texas, are Thursday, July 25 through Sunday, July 28. The tournament will be part of the 2019 USBC Cup points series and will be covered live from start to finish by PBA Xtra Frame on FloBowling.

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