Daniel Vezis leads top 48 players into Sunday's finals in Croatia Open


    2012 European Bowling Tour #5

    Two-handed Latvian wins qualifying with 1444; cut for 48th place is 1179 (196.33 average)

    2012EBT05DanielVezis.jpg2012EBT05PeterVerdnik.jpgDaniel Vezis (pictured left) of Latvia remained unchallenged during the final three squads on Saturday to win the qualifying of the Croatia Open en route to lead the top 48 into Sunday's finals at Bowling 300 in Zagreb, Croatia. The former European Youth champion, who uses the two-handed style, toppled 1444 pins, an average of 240.67, to lead the 89-player field from 16 countries.

    Christian Karlsson, Slovenia, had the sole 300 game of the tournament thus far in his 1419 series on Friday, good for second place overall. Andrey Suslov of Russia, who led Squad 10 on Saturday afternoon with 1381, was third with his high series of 1402.

    His fellow countryman, Alexander Medveditskov also totaled 1402 pins but was seeded fourth due to the lower last game (21 to 200 in Suslov's favor). Squad 2 leader Peter Verdnik (above right), Slovenia, finished in fifth place with 1396.

    2012EBT04DenisEklund2.jpg2011EBT04BenjaminKubalek.jpgDennis Eklund (left) led Squad 9 on Saturday with 1371 missing his high score by 13 pins. The Swedish international landed in sixth place with 1384. Blaž Kogej, Slovenia, took the 16th and last place to earn one bye with 1310 (218.33 average).

    Saša Petković was the top Croatian player in 18th place with 1297. Austrian national team member Benjamin Kubalek (right) led the final Squad 11 on Saturday evening with 1252 to make the first cut in 28th place.

    Two of the nine women in the field survived the first cut. Maja Debenec (below left), Slovenia, was 32nd with 1237 total including 48 pins handicap and her compatriot Mateja Kerovec finished qualifying in 47th place with 1178.

    2012EBT05MajaDebenec.jpgGabor Ficze, Hungary, also chalked up 1178, a 192.67 average, to take the 48th and last place to advance due to the lower last game (209 to 183 in Kerovec's favor).

    2012EBT05CroatiaOpenLogo_small.jpg The Croatia Open 2012 is a newcomer on the European Bowling Tour and the fifth event on the 2012 EBT Schedule. It is the second of seven EBT "Satellite" tournaments this season, the lowest of four EBT categories. The tournament will be held from Monday, April 9 through Sunday, April 15, 2012 at 18-lane Bowling 300 in Zagreb, the biggest bowling center in Croatia.

    The Croatia Open 2012 offers total prize fund of 21.000 Euro with 5.000 Euro going to the winner, 2.500 to the runner-up and 1.250 Euro a piece for the third and fourth place finishers, respectively. The highest local finisher will receive a 400 Euro bonus.

    Qualifying (6 games, unlimited re-entries) featured eleven squads and ran through Saturday, April 14. Women receive 8 pins handicap each game, a standard on the European Bowling Tour.

    The top 48 players advanced to the single-elimination finals on Sunday, April 15. The top 16 qualifiers receive one bye. In each round of the finals, the highest seeded player will bowl the lowest seeded player, the second-highest will bowl the second-lowest seeded players, etc.

    The round of 48, 32 and 16 will be contested in best-of-three games format, while the quarterfinal and semifinal matches as well as the title match will be decided in a single game.

    2012EBTLogo_small.jpg The 2012 European Bowling Tour is made up of 21 events in 16 countries including two Platinum, four Gold, eight 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 earns 100, and the winner of a Satellite tournament such as the Croatia Open 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 in Bratislava, Slovakia in Sept. 2013.


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    Standings after Qualifying

    The top 48 players advance to the finals.