WITH TEAM USA’s final selection being a straight shoot-out with three players contesting two spots, the European picture is far more complicated with the ‘World’ and ‘Combined’ list reaching their conclusion at next week’s Kuwait 9 Ball Championship. With Holland’s Niels Feijen already in the team after he topped the ‘Euro’ list earlier in the month, there are several players in contention for the final two coveted Mosconi Cup spots.
Mosconi Cup XXIII takes place at London’s Alexandra Palace from Tuesday to Friday 6th- 9th December and features two five-man teams representing America and Europe. The tournament comprises a series of singles and doubles matches with the first team to reach 11 points carrying off the famous trophy.
Jayson Shaw is the man to beat as he tops both outstanding ranking lists. With points awarded for a top 32 finish only, Shaw need only finish ahead of Albin Ouschan to maintain his lead on the World list. However if both Shaw and Ouschan flop in the event, then any one of David Alcaide, Francisco Sanchez Ruiz, Dennis Grabe, Alexander Kazakis, Mario He or Mika Immonen could win through provided they reach the semi final or better.
On the Combined ranking, Shaw once again leads with Mark Gray the imminent threat 34 points behind. That means that Gray needs a quarter-final finish or better depending on whether Shaw makes it to the points stage. Should he fail to do that, David Alcaide has a chance but he will need to reach the final and hope Mark Gray fails to make the semi finals.
The point allocation for the Kuwait 9 Ball Open is: Champion – 80 pts; Runner-up – 67; Semi-finals – 53; Quarter-finals – 40; Last 16 – 27; Last 32 – 13.
In the eventuality that a single player finishes ahead on two or more of the lists, then the spots will go to the next highest placed player(s) on the Combined list. Should the second place on the Combined list be taken by an already qualified player, then the selection would go to the third placed player.