Austria's Thomas Gross moves to the top in Tuesday's qualifying in Bratislava


    2012 European Bowling Tour #13

    Former BNC Open champion and Slovenia's Božo Nagode crack the 1300-bar; the top four players of Squads 5-8 book their spots for Sunday's finals; cut for 48th place is now 1071 (178.50 average)

    2012EBT13ThomasGross.jpg2012EBT13BozoNagode.jpgFor the second consecutive day an Austrian national team member set the tone in the qualifying of the BNC Open at BNC Bowling Center in Bratislava, Slovakia. Austria's No. 1, Thomas Gross (pictured left) rolled six games between 200 and 245 to lead the field of 105 players from nine countries after two of six qualifying days.

    The former European champion and European Champions Cup winner, who won the  last of his four career European Bowling Tour titles in Bratislava in 2010, totaled 1339 pins, an average of 223.17 for six games, to hold a 36-pin lead over Božo Nagode (right) of Slovenia, who became the first player, who cracked the 1300-bar in this year's tournament.

    2012EBT13MartinOralek.jpgNagode had six games between 204 and 233 in Squad 5 on Tuesday morning for 1303 (217.17). Cameron Weier of the United States was second in this squad with 1282 (213.67) and finished the day in third place overall. Rounding out the top 4 Tuesday was Martin Orálek (left) of the Czech Republic, who led Squad 6 with 1251 (208.50) after closing out his set with 238 and 225.

    Gross, Nagode, Weier and Orálek have already secured their spots in Sunday's finals by virtue of finishing in the top four of Tuesday's leaderboard. If any of them will finish qualifying in the top 48 of the overall qualifying standings fifth place Christian Schwarzbauer of Austria (1250) and sixth place Jiří Hindrák, Czech Republic (1242), will take advantage.

    2012EBT13RomanFurbacher2.jpg2012EBT13IvonneGross.jpgEarly leader Roman Fürbacher (left), Austria, slipped to seventh place with 1238, but is also qualified for the finals by virtue of a top 4 finish of Monday's squads. Kamil Bajcsi, Slovakia, fell from second to eighth place with 1221 and was followed by Jan Macek, Czech Republic, in ninth place with 1207.

    Rounding out the top 10 was Jaroslav Lorenc, Czech Republic, who led Squad 8 with 1192 but had a 1204 series in Squad 6. Thomas Gross' wife Ivonne Gross (right) is currently the best of 14 women with 1187 total including 8 pins handicap each game (189.83 scratch average).

    Miroslav Koník of Slovakia holds the 48th and last place to advance with 1071 and an average of 178.50. Qualifying continues on Wednesday, Sept. 5 with Squads 9-12 scheduled for 9 a.m., 1, 5 and 9 p.m. CEST.

    2012BNCOpenLogo_small.jpg The BNC Open is the sixth of seven EBT "Silver" tournaments this season and runs from Sept. 3-9 at 16-lane BNC Bowling Center. The BNC Open offers total prize fund of 42.000 Euro with 6.000 Euro going to the winner, 3.300 to the runner-up and 1.800 Euro a piece for the third and fourth place finishers.

    The BNC Open will be played on the 39 feet Winding Road pattern from the Kegel Navigation Patterns Sport Series. Click here for the Kegel Lane Map Guide.

    Qualifying (6 games, unlimited re-entries) runs through Saturday, Sept. 8 with the final qualifying Squad 24 scheduled for 9 p.m. CEST. Women receive 8 pins handicap each game, a standard on the European Bowling Tour.

    A total of 64 players will advance to the finals on Sunday, Sept. 9: The top 48 players from the overall qualifying standings, plus the top 4 each from a separate leaderboard of the Squads on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, who are not among the top 48. The last four spots go to the top 4 of the single-game Desperado Squad.

    The top 16 qualifiers earn two byes, while players seeded 17-32 bypass the first round of the finals. The remaining 32 players will bowl 3 games starting from scratch with the top 16 advancing to the second round.

    The second and third round will be played in the same format. The remaining 16 players, who advance to the fourth round, will carry forward the pinfall total from Round 3 and bowl another three-game block to cut to the top 8 for the single-elimination match play finals.

    Match play consists of two games, with the total pinfall to determine the winner. In all rounds the highest seeded player will meet the lowest seeded player, the second highest will meet the second lowest etc.

    The field will be trimmed to four then two players who will bowl for the title and the 6.000 Euro top prize.

    2012EBTLogo_small.jpg The 2012 European Bowling Tour is made up of 20 events in 16 countries including two Platinum, four Gold, seven Silver and seven Satellite tournaments.

    The top 50 men and the top 50 women in each event earn ranking points based on how they finish in the event. The winner of a Platinum tournament receives 250 ranking points, the winner of a Gold tournament gets 150, the winner of a Silver tournament such as the BNC Open earns 100, and the winner of a Satellite tournament gets 50 ranking points.

    Those points will be tabulated throughout the season to determine the top 16 men and top 16 women who will compete in the sixth EBT Masters, which will be held Sept. 30, 2013 at BNC Bowling Center in Bratislava immediately following the 2013 BNC Open (Sept. 23-29).


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    Standings after Qualifying Squad 8/24