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Cajsa Wegner wins qualifying in Brunswick Euro Challenge

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Cajsa Wegner of Sweden won the qualifying of the 15th Brunswick Euro Challenge, which concluded Saturday at Dream-Bowl Palace in Unterföhring in the Greater Munich area with squads 15-18 and the Desperado Squad.

Wegner (right and above), the younger sister of 2016 Bowling World Cup champion Jenny Wegner (above left), averaged over 260, including handicap, to lead 64 out of 383 players, 298 men and 85 women from 36 countries, into Sunday’s finals with 1563 total.

Siti Safiyah (left) of Malaysia, who started the day in second place with 1535, led the first squad on Saturday, 15th overall, with 1558 total to fall five pins short to remain in second place.

Her team mate Rafiq Ismail (right) was the best male bowler in the field in third place with 1530 and the highest scratch average of 255.00.

Jesper Svensson (left) of Sweden, who at the age of 23 owns eight European Bowling Tour titles along with seven Professional Bowlers Association titles, led squad 16 with 1512 but stayed in fourth place with his high series of 1530.

Total 14 players surpassed the 1500-mark (250 average). Jenny Wegner (right) was the lone player Saturday who cracked the top 12 who receive a first-round bye for the finals. Wegner improved her high series of 1488 by 22 pins in squad 16 to leap into 11th place with 1510.

Jaroslav Lorenc (left), Czech Republic, took the 12th and last spot for the bye with 1505 (250.83 average). The places in the top 12 were equally divided between men and women.

The top three women, Cajsa Wegner, Siti Safiyah and Mai Ginge Jensen (right) of Denmark (6th, 1521) received 1.200, 700 and 500 Euro bonuses, respectively. The qualifying featured record 18 300 games. Jensen was the lone player, man or woman, who rolled two 300 games.

Manuel Otalora (left) of Colombia and Andres Juliusson of Iceland led the 18th and last squad with 1485 and 1483 to move into 20th and 21st place in the standings. They pushed squad 17 leader Jimmy Mortensen of Denmark to 33rd place with 1455.

Defending champion Dom Barrett (right) of England used a 1451 series to advance to the finals in 40th place.

Nathan Ruest-Lajoie of Canada took the 50th and last spot with 1440 and an average of 240.00. Those 50 will be joined in the finals by the top five each from a separate leaderboard of squads 5-8 (first priority) and squads 1-4 plus the top 4 of the Desperado Squad.

Karl Wahlgren (center) of Sweden missed the 19th 300 game by one pin to win the Desperado Squad with 299. He was followed by Moued Saad Alqahtani (left) of Saudi Arabia (288), Ghislaine Stigter-Van Der Tol, Netherlands (286, including handicap) and Raymond Teece (right) of England (268).

The 15th Brunswick Euro Challenge is the fourth stop on the 2018 European Bowling Tour and the first of two EBT “Platinum” events this season, the highest of the five EBT tournament categories (platinum, gold, silver, bronze and satellite).

The BEC, which is also the curtain-raiser to the World Bowling Tour 2018, will be held from March 10-18 at Dream-Bowl Palace in Unterföhring in suburban Munich, Germany, the biggest bowling center in Europe with 52 lanes.

383 players from 36 countries compete for total prize fund of 105.000 Euro with 11.500 Euro going to the winner, 8.500 Euro to the first runner-up and 5.500 Euro to the third place finisher. Low to cash is 64th place, worth 800 Euro.

Women receive 8 pins handicap each game (up to 292 – maximum score is 300), an equality handicap provided to women in all EBT events. The top three women after qualifying received 1.200, 700 and 500 Euro bonuses, respectively.

Qualifying ran through Saturday, March 17and concluded with the ultimate one-game Desperado Squad.

Total 64 players qualified for the finals on Sunday, March 18, including the top 50 in the overall qualifying standings, the top 5 each from a separate leaderboard of the squads conducted March 13-14 and 10-11, and the top 4 of the Desperado Squad.

The top 12 qualifiers receive a first-round bye. The other 52 players bowl six games scratch to cut to the top 16 who will join the top 12 qualifiers in round two. Those 28 bowl another six games scratch after which the field is trimmed to the top 8 for match play.

Round two pinfall will be carried forward. During the seven games of match play, players receive 30 bonus pins for winning a match and 15 pins each in the event of a tie.

The top 3 players with the highest 13-game total, including bonus pins, will determine the champion in a stepladder final. The No. 3 seed bowls the No. 2 seed and the winner of the semifinal match takes on the No. 1 seed for the title and the 11.500 Euro top prize.

The 2018 European Bowling Tour features 13 tournaments in 10 countries including two “platinum”, two “gold”, three “silver”, three “bronze” and three “satellite” events, which will offer total prize fund of more than 560.000 Euro.

The top 50 men and the top 50 women in each event receive ranking points. Those points will be tabulated throughout the season to determine the top 8 men and top 8 women, who will be eligible to compete in the 12th EBT Masters July 8, 2019 at Bowling Chamartín in Madrid, Spain.

The World Bowling Tour is sanctioned by World Bowling, the governing body for the sport of bowling. The tour is the premier international bowling series that is hosted in numerous, unique cities around the globe.

Due to an agreement between World Bowling and the Professional Bowlers Association (PBA), World Bowling Tour tournaments will award a PBA Tour title if the winner is a PBA member who doesn’t accept handicap pins.

The World Bowling Tour 2018 consists of ten stops in Germany, South Korea, Sweden, Thailand, Hong Kong and the United States of America (5).

Men and women compete for points to earn places on the World Bowling Tour rankings. The points system is based on a continuous two-year cycle, where points include every event from the previous two year format. “Majors” award double points.

The top three men and top three women in the annual points list will compete in the season-ending World Bowling Tour Finals (date and venue tba).

World Bowling provides governance to international bowling and is made up of 134 bowling international federations. For more information on the World Bowling Tour, click here.

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2018 BEC – Standings after Qualifying and Desperado Squad

Top 50 qualifiers, top 5 from March 13-14 squads (places 51-55), top 5 from March 10-11 squads (places 56-60) and top 4 of the Desperado Squad (places 61-64) advance to the finals on Sunday, March 18.

300 games (18) – Adrian Ang, Christoph Schurian, Jenny Wegner, Christopher Sloan, Osku Palermaa, Anthony Simonsen, Kim Bolleby, Jason Sterner, Emil Ågren, Yanee Saebe, Krzysztof Olesinski, Cajsa Wegner, Mai Ginge Jensen (2), Kimmo Lehtonen, Markus Jansson, Pontus Andersson, Annop Arromsaranon.

Herbert Bickel

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