International Seniors Bowling Tour all-time title leader Angie Brown
of England and Finland’s Timo Mäkelä
captured the women’s and men’s title in the 7th Track Alsace Senior Open Sunday at Cristal Bowling in Wittelsheim, France. It was the first title for Mäkelä and the 17th for Brown since the Tour started in 2010.
The third stop of the 2018 season drew 112 men and 28 women from 13 countries The format for the tournament was two blocks of 6 games qualifying, with re-entries being allowed. For those not able to qualify through the main leaderboard, there were additional opportunities through Turbo games and a Desperado squad.
Age bonus started at age 51 (1 pin per game), then increased a pin for every additional year of age with no limit. As with all ISBT events, there was a separate division for ladies.
The opening squad on Thursday saw defending champion Christer Danielsson from Sweden start well with 1425 including bonus, ahead of Hermann Wimmer from Germany.
Martina Beckel from Germany took the top ladies spot with 1217, just ahead of Nadine Robert from France. Beckel has won the first two tournaments this season and the ISBT Masters for 2017, which was contested during the 7th Track Alsace Senior Open.
The second squad on Thursday was won by Valentin Fatu from Romania with 1389. In the ladies’ section, Angie Brown set the pace with 1226.
There were three squads on Friday, the first again went to Scandinavian bowlers. Petri Keituri from Finland was top with 1432, ahead of Ulf Lönngren from Sweden. English ladies led this squad, Kimberley Oakley had 1317, ahead of Angie Brown.
In the fourth squad, there was more English success, with Ron Oldfield, fresh off his victory in the Masters, hitting 1424, ahead of Auke Brokehuizen from the Netherlands. Petra Duplois from Germany had a solid block of 1280 to secure the squad win.
The final Friday squad was won by Dominique de Nolf from Belgium with 1377, ahead of Jean-Pierre Paugnat from France. Pépita Jacques from France led the ladies with 1266.
Helmut Ulber from Germany won the first of three squads on Saturday with 1412, ahead of Hermann Wimmer, while Liliane Vintens from Belgium was top lady with 1254.
Patrick Rolland from France took the second squad with 1479, ahead of England’s Lol Ellis and Frank Stander. There were a number of good blocks in the ladies section. Defending women’s champion Brigitte Fievet from France had 1333 and was followed by Martina Beckel, Marianne Pelz and Bianca Völkl-Brandt, all from Germany.
One squad remained for players to make their moves for a place in the finals. Ron Oldfield had another big block of 1472, but pride of place went to Valentin Fatu’s 300 in his fifth game (pictured left), ensuring him of a place in the final. In the ladies’ section, Angie Brown had another good block of 1323 to win the squad ahead of Pépita Jacques.
With qualification over, it was a clean sweep in the overall rankings for England, with Ron Oldfield first, and Frank Stander second, an amazing result for Stander bowling a 194 average at the age of 87 years old. In third place in the men’s qualification was Patrick Rolland.
The top eight would get a bye into the second finals round, eighth place went to Valentin Fatu, with the final cut at 32 falling to Noël De Lazzer from France on 2638.
In the ladies division, Angie Brown (center, with Frank Stander, left, and Ron Oldfield, right) finished top with 2583, ahead of Pépita Jacques and Martina Beckel. Last qualifier from the overall standings was Kimberly Oakley with 2495.
For those who had not qualified, the Desperado Squad remained an option. Only 8 men and 4 women took part with the top two men and top lady moving forward to the finals.
In the men’s section, Patrick Mochon from France started with the first seven strikes, while Robert Bruce from England had the front six. Both players had now done the hard work and closed the games out to qualify for the final stages.
The ladies Desperado was very close, with Lynne Walker from Wales having a solid closed game to finish with 198 with bonus. Françoise Augustine from France was also having a solid game, and although her scratch score was not as good, she became the Desperado qualifier by a single pin including age bonus.
The quarter final round was five games starting from scratch. Timo Mäkelä was the comfortable winner with 1228, ahead of Roger Pieters from Belgium and Christer Danielsson. Only the top 16 would go forward. Noël de Lazzer again hit the cutoff number with 1071.
The quarter final round saw the 16 bowlers from the previous round joined by the top eight from qualification. This round was another Scandinavian affair, with Ulf Lönngren and Timo Mäkelä leading with 1303 and 1222, respectively. Only eight players would make the round robin final, eighth place was Helmut Ulber from Germany with 1149.
After three games of the men’s round-robin final, Lol Ellis had a slight lead over Patrick Rolland. In the next game they played each other, and a win for Rolland put him into the lead.
However, Timo Mäkelä (center) was now scoring strongly, and a 247 scratch average over the last four games gave him a comfortable victory over Patrick Rolland (left) and Ulf Lönngren (right), the first ISBT podium finish for Timo Mäkelä.
In the women’s final, Angie Brown started strongest with a 265 first game, but Liliane Vintens was slowly pegging back the lead, and by the end of the third game they were level.
However, Angie Brown continued to score well and win her matches, and by the start of the last game had a comfortable 65 pin lead over the rest of the field. The last game started well from Angie Brown, but the last five frames were opened through splits or washouts, leaving her with a disappointing 149 game.
Targeting back-to-back titles in the Alsace Senior Open, Brigitte Fievet (left) looked like she might take advantage of this with a 233 game, but in the end, she fell 10 pins short to finish in second place, with Liliane Vintens (right) in third, leaving Angie Brown (center) to collect her record 17th ISBT title.
The fourth stop of the 2018 International Seniors Bowling Tour is the Italian Senior Open, which will be held at Reno Bowling, Bologna, Italy, from June 2-10. Full details are available at the ISBT website.
Story and Results courtesy of Tony Brown.
Martina Beckel, Gery Verbruggen capture titles in Euro Bowling Senior Open
Martina Beckel, Helmut Ulber start 2018 ISBT with victory in Osnabrück
2018 ISBT Schedule & Champions
2018 Alsace Senior Open – Men’s Match Play Finals
2018 Alsace Senior Open – Women’s Match Play Finals
2018 Alsace Senior Open – Men’s Round Two
Top 8 advance to the finals.
2018 Alsace Senior Open – Men’s Round One
Top 16 advance to the second round.
2018 Alsace Senior Open – Men’s Qualifying
Top 32 qualifiers plus three players from Turbo Games (places 33-35) and two players from the Desperado Squad (place 36-37) advance to the finals. The top 8 players received one bye.
2018 Alsace Senior Open – Women’s Qualifying
Top 6 qualifiers plus one player each from Turbo Games (7th place) and Desperado Squad (8th place) advanced to the finals.