Timo Alho leads 44th Brunswick Ballmaster Open after the opening day


    2014 European Bowling Tour #1

    Finn shoots 1373 series in Squad 2 to take the early lead in the World Bowling Tour and European Bowling Tour event; cut for 44th place is 1141 (190.17 average)

    2013EBT15TimoAlho.jpg 2012EBT04PatriciaLuoto.jpgThe 44th edition of the Brunswick Ballmaster Open got underway Friday with a youth and an "early bird" squad at Tali Bowling Center in Finland's capital city of Helsinki.

    Timo Alho (pictured left) of Finland rolled games of 235, 259, 237, 236, 202 and 204 in Squad 2 to lead the 105-players field after the opening day with 1373 and an average of 228.83. German international Patricia Luoto (right) added 48 pins women's handicap to her 1316 series (219.33 average) to sit in second place with 1364.

    2013EBT04KimmoLehtonen3.jpg2013EBT14JoonasJehkinen.jpgPlaces three to five belonged to Finnish bowlers. Two-time Ballmaster champion Kimmo Lehtonen (left; 2002 & '07) was mere two pins behind in third place with 1362.

    World and European champion Joonas Jehkinen (right) led the youth squad on Friday morning with 1325, good for fourth place overall. Rounding out the top 5 was Markus Heinonen on 1320.

    Marko Tuominen, Finland, currently holds the 44th and last place to advance with 1141 and an average of 190.17.

    Qualifying continues on Saturday, January 4, with Squads 3 & 4 scheduled to start at 11.00 a.m. and 3 p.m. local time (CET +1).

    2014BallmasterLogo_small.jpg44th Brunswick Ballmaster Open is the opening event of the 2014 European Bowling Tour and the first of six "EBT Gold" events this season, the second-highest of the four EBT categories. The tournament will be held from Friday, Jan. 3, through Sunday, Jan. 12, 2014 at 36-lane Tali Bowling Center in Finland's capital city Helsinki.

    Players will compete for total prize money of 90.300 Euro with 12.000 Euro going to the winner, 8.000 to the runner-up and 4.000 and 3.000 to the third and fourth place finishers, respectively. Low to cash is 48th place, worth 1.100 Euro.

    According to an agreement between the World Tenpin Bowling Association (WTBA) and the Professional Bowlers Association (PBA), the Ballmaster will award a PBA international title, if won by a PBA member or a PBA international member.

    Qualifying (six games, unlimited re-entries) of the Brunswick Ballmaster Open runs through Saturday, Jan. 11, and ends with Squad 17 followed by the ultimate one-game Desperado Squad slated for 11.30 p.m. local time (CET +1).

    Women will receive 8 pins handicap each game (up to 292 - maximum score is 300), a standard for women on the European Bowling Tour.

    A total of 48 players - the top 44 from the overall qualifying standings plus the top 4 from the Desperado Squad - qualify for the finals on Sunday, Jan. 13. The qualifying winner receives a 2.000 Euro bonus. The first and second runner-up get 1.000 and 500 Euro, respectively.

    All 48 finalists bowl eight games scratch with the top 16 advancing to the match play portion. Those 16 bowl further 15 games of round robin match play (no position round) with the Round 1 total carried over.

    Players earn 30 bonus pins for each match won and 15 for a tie. The top 4 players after 23 games including bonus pins determine the champion in a traditional stepladder final.

    The No. 4 seed meets the No. 3 in the opening match. The winner takes on the No. 2 seed for the right to bowl the top seed for the title, the 12.000 Euro top prize and 150 EBT and 50 WBT ranking points.


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    Qualifying Standings after Squad 2/17