Joonas Huolman cracks top 10 in Squad 8 at Brunswick Ballmaster Open


    2010 European Bowling Tour #1

    Mike Fagan leads the 396-player field halfway through the qualifying

    2010EBT01MikeFagan.jpg2010EBT01JoonasHuolman.jpgFinn Joonas Huolman (pictured left) finished the 8th qualifying squad of the EBT Platinum Brunswick Ballmaster Open Thursday evening at Tali Bowl in Helsinki, Finland, with games of 257 and 258 en route to lead the squad and to crack the top 10 in the overall qualifying standings.

    The 8th of 15 qualifying squad featured 62 instead of 72 players as 10 bowlers from England and Italy missed the squad due to a snow storm in Great Britain.

    powers Huolman, who started his six-game series with back-to-back 210 games, 226 and 243 chalked up 1404, an average of 234, to leap into 7th place overall.

    PBA champion and two-time EBT winner Mike Fagan (above right), United States, leads the 396-player field as the tournament has passed its halfway mark with 1572 (262 avg.) behind games of 279, 224, 278, 279, 244 and 268 in Squad 7.

    2009EBT18YoanAlix.jpg2009EBT05MartinPaulsson.jpgSeven players, five Finns and Yoan Alix (left), France and Swede Martin Paulsson (right), moved into the top 44 in Squad 8. Pekka Mäyry was second with 1377, good for 12th place overall. Multiple European champion Petteri Salonen was next with 1343 to sit in 23rd place.

    Alix moved into 30th place with 1331, with Paulsson and Magnus Lönnroth in 37th and 38th at 1320 and 1317, resp. Janne Tuomivirta overtook 43rd place with 1308. Niko Rannikko, Finland, currently holds the 44th and final spot to advance with 1306 or an average of 217.67.

    200910PBAMikaKoivuniemi.jpg200910PBAParkerBohn.jpgSingapore's Cherie Tan (10th) and Reija Lundén (32nd), Finland, are the only women in the top 44 with 1379 and 1329, each including 48 pins handicap, a standard for women on the European Bowling Tour.

    8-time PBA champion and 2003-04 PBA Player of the Year Mika Koivuniemi (left), Finland, sits in 14th place with 1365 and is followed by PBA exempt player Tim Mack, United States, in 15th place with 1365. PBA and USBC Hall of Famer Parker Bohn III (right), United States, is in 21st place with 1351.

    According to the tournament organizers, Swede Karl Wahlgren, who became the first player to roll a 300 game in the tournament in Squad 7, hasn't paid the extra entry fee and is therefore not eligible to win the 10.000 Euro 300-game award.

    2010BallmasterOpenBanner.jpg The 40th Brunswick Ballmaster Open will be held from Saturday, Jan. 2 through Sunday Jan. 10 at the 36-lane Tali Bowling Center in Helsinki, Finland. Pasi Uotila, Finland, is the defending champion. Norwegian Tore Torgersen was the last non-Finnish winner back in 1996.

    About 500 players will compete for increased total prize money of 105.000 Euro or approximately 150.000 USD. The champion will walk away with the 15.000 Euro top prize. In addition the Ballmaster offers a 10.000 Euro extra prize for a 300-game.

    Qualifying continues on Friday, Jan. 7, with Squad 9, 10 and 11 and runs through Saturday Jan. 9 with the final qualifying squad 15 scheduled for 8pm. The ultimate one-game Desperado Squad will conclude the qualifying at 11.30pm. Women will receive 8 pins handicap each game.

    Squad 1 was reserved youth bowlers, who must not have reached the age of 24 on Jan. 2, and Squad 5 was reserved for senior bowlers, who must have reached the age of 50 on Jan. 6.

    A total of 48 players - the top 44 from the overall qualifying standings plus the top 4 from the Desperado Squad - will qualify for the finals on Sunday, Jan. 10. No byes are given in this tournament.

    The finals will be contested in a format similar to the old PBA tournaments. All 48 finalists will bowl 8 games starting from scratch to cut to the top 16 who will advance to match play portion. Those 16 will bowl 15 games of round robin match play plus one game position round with the pinfall of Round 1 being carried forward to determine the top 4 players for the stepladder finals.

    The No. 4 seed meets the No. 3 in the opening match and the winner takes on the No. 2 seed for the right to bowl the top seed for the title, the 15.000 Euro top prize and 250 ranking points. (Note: The winner of a Satellite tournament gets 50, the winner of a Silver tournament gets 100, and the winner of a Gold tournament gets 150 ranking points.)


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    Brunswick Ballmaster Open - Qualifying Standings after Squad 8/15

    The top 44 qualifiers plus the top 4 from the Desperado Squad will qualify for the finals on Sunday, Jan. 10.