Four seasoned players will be representing the country in the 2017 WPA (World Pool-Billiard Association) World 9-Ball Championship – China Open beginning today at the Pudong Tangzhen Culture and Sports Center in Shanghai, China.
Playing in the men’s division are Doha Asian Games silver medalist Jeffrey De Luna and Southeast Asian Games 9-Ball doubles champion Carlo Biado while two-time Women’s World 10-Ball champion Rubilen Amit and 2016 Amway eSpring International Women 9-Ball Championship winner Chezka Centeno are the country’s bets in the women’s class.
De Luna is in Group A with Ko Pin-Yi, Jeong Young Hwa, Hsieh Chia-Chen, Roland Garcia, Lin Da-Li, Robby Foldovari and Chang Yu-Long. De Luna faces Lin, Foldovari meets Chang, Ko battles Jeong and Hsieh fights Garcia in their respective first round games.
On the other hand, Biado joins the Group B together with Xu Xiaochong, Zhu Xihe, Hayato Hijikata, Konrad Juszczyszyn, Nick Van Den Berg, Robert Hart and Ko Pin-Chung.
He will take on Xu in his first assignment while the other matches will feature Zhu versus Hikikata, Juszczyszyn versus Van Den Berg and Hart versus Ko.
Centeno has been drawn in Group B with Wei Tzu-Chien, Jessica Tan, Monika Zabek, Shaghayegh Sanei and Pia Blaser while Amit is in Group H with Chen Siming, Chie Fujita, Natalia Seroshtan, Kim Bogeon and Marharyta Fefilava.
Centeno and Amit secured opening-game byes with the former awaiting the winner between Sanei and Blaser and the latter battling the victorious between Bogeon and Fefilava.
The tournament will employ a double-elimination format, alternate breaks in the group stage.
The top two players in each group will advance to the knockout stage.
A total of $373,600 in cash prize is at stake in this year’s edition with the
men’s champion getting $40,000 and the runner-up receiving $20,000.
The women’s titlist will take home $36,000 while the runner-up bags an $18,000 consolation purse.