Albin Ouschan 5-1 Mieszko Fortunski
Niels Feijen 5-1 Naoyuki Oi
Niels Feijen progressed to Winners’ Group of Predator Championship League Pool, winning the Group 4 final 5-0 against Albin Ouschan at Stadium MK, Milton Keynes.
Feijen had reached the Group 3 final yesterday after two previous semi-final appearances and referred to progression as trying to ‘beat the boss’ in a video game, with defeat meaning you have to start over the next day.
The Dutchman, a two-time World Pool Masters champion and four-time Mosconi Cup MVP, beat Mieszko Fortunski 5-1 in his group semi-final before compiling the misery for a frustrated Ouschan, who has also been competing since the first group on Monday.
“That was great,” said Feijen. “You come all the way, starting at noon, get all the way to the final and you want to finish it off. It is races to five so you could get to five semi-finals in a row and you need a little bit of luck.
“I played really well against Oi in the semis and in the final I had a couple of rolls after the break but I was playing well and making a lot of tough shots. I felt really great from the last four matches, it clicked together at the right time and, it’s the nuts!
“I felt I was breaking good all week but I felt I wasn’t getting enough open racks. I played Kristina and I knew I had at least got through the day, so I took a chance, tried a couple of different breaks and I started getting open chances. Then the game changes completely; I started grooving, your confidence goes up, and it was great fun.
“I have played 31 matches now and it was just a matter of when, not if, for me. Something was going to click and I knew sooner or later you would get that groove back.”
Both Ouschan and Feijen had won their semi-finals 5-1. The Austrian, who topped the league phase with five wins, defeated Mieszko Fortunski. Feijen came second in the group standings before beating Naoyuki Oi in his semi-final. Japanese star Oi joined the tournament in this group and opened with 5-0 wins over Kristina Tkach and Billy Thorpe, however he lost momentum in the second half of the day and eventually finished third in the table.
Tkach was the other Group 4 newcomer, and after a nervous start settled into the day to take fifth spot and ensure her return in Group 5. Kelly Fisher, who began the event in Group 1, finished bottom of the group and is now eliminated. During her time in the event she amassed $3,400 in prize money.
Predator Championship League Pool has a prize fund of $85,950. Every day features a seven-player group, with each player facing every other player once in a race-to-5. At the end of the group the top four advance to the play-offs, playing a semi-final and then final, also played as race-to-5. Play-off champions will advance to the big-money Winners’ Group on March 29, which will provide the showpiece conclusion of Predator Championship League Pool.
Players who finished bottom of each group are eliminated from the event, while the remaining five players in each group will continue to the next day’s play, where two new players enter the tournament.
Action from Table 1 of Predator Championship League Pool can be seen live on FreeSports (UK & Ireland), DAZN and Zhibo.tv (China). Viewers elsewhere in the world can tune in at Matchroom.Live, which also carries global coverage of Table 2.