The Philippines got the better of Spain’s other side at the 2023 World Cup of Pool at Pazo de Feiras e Congresos de Lugo, Spain in partnership with The Asociación Gallega de Billar Pool (AGP), Xunta de Galicia and EIDF Solar to reach the quarter-finals live on Sky Sports in the UK and Ireland, DAZN in Spain, the USA, Italy, and Brazil, Viaplay in Scandinavia, the Baltics and Poland and broadcasters worldwide.
Not content with knocking out defending champions Spain A (Francisco Sanchez Ruiz and David Alcaide) on the opening day, James Aranas and Johann Chua knocked out the other Spanish hopes in Jose Alberto Delgado and Jonas Souto to reach the quarter-finals at a canter 7-2. Quickly, the Pinoys found themselves three racks to the good with Spain given very little room for error. Spain got a rack back to be 3-1 down but Chua delivered a fatal blow in the following rack going airborne to make the 4-1 and then Aranas put the finishes touches for 5-1.
At 5-1, Souto was at the table and fluked the nine when going for the four to cut the deficit but that was as good as it got for the Spaniards in front of a buoyant home support. The Filipinos completed the job with a golden break from Aranas to see them into the quarter-finals where Chinese Taipei await next.
In the second encounter of the afternoon, China and Singapore put on a show for the fans in a classic hill-hill which swung in the favour of the former’s Wu Jia Qing and Wang Can after plenty of challenges for both sides. At 2-0 down, Aloysius Yapp and Sharik Sayed pounced to claim the resulting two racks to level proceedings at two apiece.
Wu was hooked after a safety from Singapore in the fifth rack but he went airborne to make a brilliant one which put China in position to run out and lead again at 3-2 up. Yapp produced an outrageous kick and stick in the sixth which worked a treat as the contest spun again for Singapore to then lead 4-3 and they looked well placed for the quarter-finals.
Last year, Singapore reached the final before defeat to Spain and they reached the hill first at 6-5 despite drama having fouled after Sayed broke out of turn having broken in the eighth rack, the last time prior to then that Singaporeans had the break. On the hill, a dry break from Sayed left a tricky safety exchange which ended up in ball in hand for the Chinese who came through to reach the hill.
In the final rack, Sayed rattled a two ball in the jaws of the pocket to allow China in to finish the job off and set up a quarter-final tie tomorrow with either the USA or Japan.
Chinese Taipei’s passage to the quarter-finals was going to be tricky with the Ko Brothers duo of Pin Yi and Ping Chung tasked with taking down Niels Feijen and recent Spanish Open finalist Marc Bijsterbosch. The Netherlands took the opening rack but a Feijen scratch off the break in the second brought matters level at one apiece. It was a tail of another scratch this time from Bijsterbosch that gave the Ko’s their first advantage after losing the cue ball playing from the six to nine.
Early signs suggested the game would eventually go the distance after Feijen and Bijsterbosch squared things up. Chinese Taipei found another gear at that stage though and the former winners put on a performance that will send shockwaves through the field to orchestrate a comfortable 7-2 with very little stress.
Friday, 30 June (eve) Match Odds
Great Britain 4/5 – 10/11 Vietnam
Germany 8/15 – 11/8 Canada
USA 4/11 – 2/1 Japan
The 2023 World Cup of Pool continues from 7pm tonight local time live on Sky Sports in the UK and Ireland with those in Spain, Italy, and the USA able to watch on DAZN. Fans in Scandinavia, Baltics, Netherlands, and Poland can watch on Viaplay with further broadcasters around the world. See where to watch in your country here with more broadcasters to be announced. Action will also be live on Matchroom.Live.
The 2023 World Cup of Pool will be played alongside the 31st Galician Team Pool Billiards Championship, which will bring together more than 1,000 players in the Pazo de Ferias y Congresos de Lugo, where more than 40 tables will be in action. The participants in this tournament considered the biggest in Europe, will compete for the regional titles and the prizes arranged by the Galician Association of Pool Billiards.