Kawazoe, Matsunaga lead strong field of local bowlers at International Bowling Championships


    2013 World Bowling Tour #4

    World Bowling Tour major offers total prize fund of 30.000.000 Yen PLUS 10.000.000 JPY for EVERY 300 game bowled in the TV final eliminator rounds; Main Event Schedule changes as of Jan. 11; Japanese government raises income tax rate for foreigners from 20% to 20.42%; Bowlingdigital covers the event live at 116-lane Inazawa Grand Bowl in Inazawa City, Japan



    2013JPBAShotaKawazoe.jpg2012JPBAHiromiMatsunaga.jpgJapan Professional Bowlers Association super stars Shota Kawazoe (pictured left) and Hiromi Matsunaga (right) lead a strong field of local contenders in the International Bowling Championships 2013 supported by DHC, which will be held from Jan. 15-19 at world's biggest bowling center on one floor, the 116-lane Inazawa Grand Bowl in Inazawa City, Japan.

    Kawazoe has dominated the men's JPBA Tour in the past three seasons winning the "JPBA Triple Crown" (leading the three major categories - point, earnings & average - in one season) in his rookie season in the year 2010 and repeated the feat in 2011 and 2012. Kawazoe has won 9 JPBA titles including five in 2011.

    2013JPBAShinichiroTamai.jpg2013JPBAMayumiYoshida.jpgJoining Kawazoe in the elite group of 25 men, who were automatically seeded into the IBC's main event, were four-time JPBA champion Shinichiro Tamai (left), one-time winner Shuichi Heki and Shigeo Saito.

    Matsunaga is the Ladies JPBA Tour's point and average leader in the past two years finishing second in earnings in both seasons. Matsunaga, who has won seven JPBA title, is joined in the women's seeded group by six-time titlist and 2012 Tour earnings leader Urara Himeji (2nd in average), eight-time champion Mayumi Yoshida (right; 2nd in points; 3rd in average) and one-time titlist Miki Nishimura (3rd in points).

    2013JBCYoshinaoMasatoki.jpg2013JBCHarukaMatsuda.jpgThe four seeded bowlers of the Ladies Bowling Organization are Hiroko Shimizu, Shima Washizuka, Hiroe Ishimoto and Yuka Tsuchiya. The LBO is sponsored by DHC.

    Representing the Japan Bowling Congress men's and women's national team are on the men's side, Yoshinao Masatoki (left), Tomoyuki Sasaki, Daisuke Yoshida, Toshihiko Takahashi and Shusaku Asato as well as on the women's side, Haruka Matsuda (right), Misaki Mukotani, Natsuki Sasaki and Hikaru Takekawa.

    Rounding out the total 50 seeded players are last year's top 4, six world and continental champions, as well as a number of PBA bowlers. The organizing committee has informed us that PBA Hall of Famer Pete Weber, the winner of 36 PBA titles including record five U.S. Open titles, has cancelled his participation. He will not be replaced on the list of seeded players.

    BowlingdigitalBanner.gif Bowlingdigital will cover the International Bowling Championships 2013 supported by DHC live from Inazawa Grand Bowl in Inazawa City, Japan, including stories, results and photos commencing Tuesday, Jan. 15 with the international qualifying all the way through to the TV finals on Saturday, Jan. 19.

    The International Bowling Championships 2013 supported by DHC is the fourth event on the 2013 World Bowling Tour. 258 players - 138 men and 120 women including 50 seeded player (25 / 25), 148 local qualifiers (77 / 71) and 60 international qualifiers (36 / 24) will advance to the main event to bowl in separate divisions for total prize fund of 30 million Japanese Yen.

    The men's and women's champion each receive JPY6,000,000. Second place is 3.000.000, third place 1.500.000 Yen and fourth place 800.000 Yen.

    The International Bowling Championships 2013 is currently the lone WBT "Major" outside the United States. For the first time since its inception in 2011, "Major" status will be granted for premium tournaments with no less than $200,000 prize fund. Double ranking points will be awarded in all "Majors".

    Other "Majors" are the PBA World Championship, United States Bowling Congress Masters, U.S. Open (men and women), and the 2013 WTBA World Championships.

    The finalists have a chance for an even bigger payday as 10 million Yen will be awarded for EVERY 300 game bowled in the TV final eliminator rounds.

    Another 200.000 Yen and 100.000 Yen each go to the men's and women's winner and runner-up, respectively, of a one-game Baker match between the best three local bowlers and the best three international bowlers who are not qualified for the TV finals.

    Note: On Jan. 1, 2013 the Japanese government raised the income tax rate for foreigners from 20% to 20.42%. All prize money won by international bowlers is subject to tax.

    Main Event Information
    Main Event Rules & Regulations
    Main Event Schedule (as of Jan. 11, 2013)
    Prize Fund


    Seeded Players

    Total 50 players, 25 men and 25 women, bypass the local or international qualifying and will be seeded into the main event including the top 4 men and the top 4 women of the International Bowling Championships 2012, the men's and women's winner of the inaugural 2012 World Singles Championships, the men's and women's gold medalists in Masters match play of the European Championships and the Pan American Bowling Confederation Championships as well as the top 3 men and women of the Asian Championships.

    Joining those 10 men and women are six men and three women of the U.S. Professional Bowlers Association (PBA) and four players each from the men's and women's Japan Professional Bowlers Association (JPBA) Tour. The seeded field is completed by four women of the LBO and five men and women of the Japan National Team.


    Finalists of the 2012 IBC (4 men / 4 women)


    World and continental champions (6 men / 6 women)


    U.S. Professional Bowlers Association (6 men / 3 women)


    Japan Professional Bowlers Association (4 men / 4 women)


    LBO (0 men / 4 women)


    Japan National Team (5 men / 4 women)


    Local and International Qualifying

    Total 113 men and 95 women will qualify from the local (77 / 71) and international qualifying pool (36 / 24).

    The eight qualifying squads for international bowlers will be contested Jan. 15 (at 5 and 6.45 p.m.) and Jan 16 (at 8.30, 10.15 a.m. and 12.30, 14.15, 17.30 and 19.15 p.m.) at Inazawa Grand Bowl, the biggest bowling center in the world on one floor (according to the Guinness Book of World Records) whose 116 lanes span 91,494 square feet without any pillars.

    Each qualifying squad features three games. The top 36 men and the top 24 women with the highest three-game series advance.

    International Qualifying

    So far, the host federation, Japan Bowling Congress, has registered entries from 17 countries and regions: Australia, Bahrain, Canada, Chinese Taipei, Denmark, Finland, Guam, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Iran, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, the Netherlands, United States, and Vietnam.

    Among the players, who will bowl in international qualifying are Indonesian standouts Ryan Lalisang, Putty Armein and Tannya Roumimper; Thailand's No. 1 Yannaphon Larp-apharat, five men and five women from Malaysia's elite team as well as additional national members from Singapore.

    The Korean Professional Bowling Association (KPBA) will send 18 bowlers including stars like Jeon Tae-Hwa and Yang Tae-Sung.

    The venue for the qualifying finals for local bowler is Nagoya Grand Bowl, the biggest bowling center in the world by number of lanes staring 156 lanes on three floors.


    Main Event

    The main event of the International Bowling Championships 2013 runs from Jan. 17-19 at Inazawa Grand Bowl.

    138 men and 120 women bowl three blocks of three games with the top 24 players advancing to the semifinals. Following another two blocks of the three games, the top 5 players based on the 15-game total advance to the TV eliminator finals. In case there is no local bowler among the top 5 in each division, the best local bowler will be seeded fifth.

    The five men and five women will meet in the TV finals on Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013. The eliminator finals will be contested on temporary lanes installed at Inazawa Futsal Stadium, which is located next door to the bowling center. The show will be broadcasted by NHK BS1 on Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013 as a three-hour program.

    All players bowl one game with the lowest two players eliminated. The remaining three players will bowl a second game, with another player eliminated. The two survivors will then bowl for the title and the 6.000.000 Yen first prize.

    For more details and a video of the International Bowling Championships 2012 supported by DHC click here.


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