Mika Koivuniemi captures an unprecedented fourth Brunswick Ballmaster Open title


    2014 European Bowling Tour #1

    Seventh-place Joline Persson Planefors, Sweden, wins women's ranking in Helsinki; Finn Timo Alho beats Koivuniemi in the 300eXtra final to win 20.000 Euro

    2014EBT01MikaKoivuniemi2.jpg2013EBT15DominicBarrett3.jpg Mika Koivuniemi (pictured left; photo Seija Lankinen) of Finland won an unprecedented fourth Ballmaster Open title when he defeated Dominic Barrett (right) in a low-scoring title match, 188-172, to celebrate his ninth victory on the European Bowling Tour and to earn the 12.000 Euro top prize.

    Koivuniemi, who earned a 3.000 Euro bonus for rolling the tournament's first 300 game during qualifying, also was awarded his 13th career PBA title and his fourth win on the World Bowling Tour.

    2014EBT01TimoAlho.jpg2013EBT04JoonasJehkinen3.jpgThe biggest check, however, went to Timo Alho, who defeated Koivuniemi in the 300eXtra final to win 20.000 Euro (left; photo Seija Lankinen). Koivuniemi left a 2-8-10 split in final roll-off and Alho sealed the victory with a strike.

    The top four 48 players, who survived the qualifying, overcame a grueling format on Sunday including an eight-game round a 15-game round robin match play round. In the opening match, World and European champion Joonas Jehkinen (right) of Finland, seeded third, flew past PBA champion Ronnie Russell (below left), United States, 256-184.

    2013EBT01RonnieRussell.jpg2013EBT15JolinePerssonPlanefors.jpgNo. 2 seed Koivuniemi, who lives in the United States, topped Jehkinen in the semifinal match, 236-201, to bowl top-seeded Barrett for the title.

    The eight-time EBT champion, who was looking for his fourth PBA title and his third title out of five events on the 2014 World Bowling Tour, received 8.000 Euro for second place. Jehkinen received 4.000 Euro for third place and Russell took home 3.000 Euro for fourth place.

    2013 women's point ranking winner Joline Persson Planefors (right), Sweden, was the lone woman who advanced to round robin match play finishing in seventh place en route to win the women's ranking in Helsinki.

    The 2014 Brunswick Ballmaster Open drew 511 players, 452 men and 59 women.

    2014BallmasterLogo_small.jpg The 44th 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 is held from Friday, Jan. 3, through Sunday, Jan. 12, 2014 at 36-lane Tali Bowling Center in Finland's capital city Helsinki.

    Players 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 awards 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 ran from January 3-11. Women receive 8 pins handicap each game (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 - qualified for the finals on Sunday, Jan. 13. The qualifying winner received a 2.000 Euro bonus. The first and second runner-up got 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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    44th Brunswick Ballmaster Open

    Tali Bowling Center in Helsinki, Finland (Jan. 3-12, 2014)

    Championship Round:
    1. Mika Koivuniemi, Finland, 424 (2 games), 12.000 Euro
    2. Dominic Barrett, England, 172 (1 game), 8.000 Euro
    3. Joonas Jehkinen, Finland, 457 (2 games), 4.000 Euro
    4. Ronnie Russell, United States, (1 game), 3.000 Euro

    Playoff Results:
    First Match: No. 3 Jehkinen def. No. 4 Russell, 256-184
    Second Match: No. 2 Koivuniemi def. Jehkinen, 236-201
    Championship: Koivuniemi def. No. 1 Barrett, 188-172.


    Final Standings - Places 5-48 (Cashers)

    5. Magnus Johnson Jr., Sweden, 2.600 Euro
    6. Kimmo Lehtonen, Finland, 2.500 Euro
    7. Joline Persson Planefors, Sweden, 2.400 Euro
    8. Lasse Lintilä, Finland, 2.300 Euro
    9. Pasi Uotila, Finland, 2.200 Euro
    10. Tom Hess, United States, 2.100 Euro
    11. Petteri Salonen, Finland, 2.000 Euro
    12. Timo Alho, Finland, 1.900 Euro
    13. Paul Moor, England, 1.800 Euro
    14. Nathan Bohr, United States, 1.700 Euro
    15. Karl Wahlgren, Sweden, 1.600 Euro
    16. Thomas Larsen, Denmark, 1.500 Euro
    17. Marko Luukkonen, Finland, 1.100 Euro
    18. Jesper Agerbo, Denmark, 1.100 Euro
    19. Tomas Leandersson, Sweden, 1.100 Euro
    20. Ville Holmström, Finland, 1.100 Euro
    21. Osku Palermaa, Finland, 1.100 Euro
    22. Martin Larsen, Sweden, 1.100 Euro
    23. Mattias Wetterberg, Sweden, 1.100 Euro
    24. Joonas Jähi, Finland, 1.100 Euro
    25. Carsten Warming Hansen, Denmark, 1.100 Euro
    26. Ida Andersson, Sweden, 1.100 Euro
    27. Alexander Johansson, Sweden, 1.100 Euro
    28. Piritta Maja, Finland, 1.100 Euro
    29. Jesse Kallio, Finland, 1.100 Euro
    30. Jesper Svensson, Sweden, 1.100 Euro
    31. Samu Valaranta, Finland, 1.100 Euro
    32. Olli Pakonen, Finland, 1.100 Euro
    33. Samuli Tiainen, Finland, 1.100 Euro
    34. Patricia Luoto, Finland, 1.100 Euro
    35. Perttu Jussila, Finland, 1.100 Euro
    36. Kim Bolleby, Sweden, 1.100 Euro
    37. Chris Loschetter, United States, 1.100 Euro
    38. Peter Hellström, Sweden, 1.100 Euro
    39. Alexander Medveditskov, Russia, 1.100 Euro
    40. Pontus Andersson, Sweden, 1.100 Euro
    41. Rebecka Larsen Jr., Sweden, 1.100 Euro
    42. Jari Ratia, Finland, 1.100 Euro
    43. Markus Melanen, Finland, 1.100 Euro
    44. Marek Talpa, Czech Republic, 1.100 Euro
    45. Marcus Tidbeck, Sweden, 1.100 Euro
    46. Kert Truus, Estonia, 1.100 Euro
    47. Heidi Manninen, Finland, 1.100 Euro
    48. Harri Määttä, Finland, 1.100 Euro


    Round Robin Match Play (15 games)

    30 pins bonus per win, 15 for a tie; * women's scores including 8 pins handicap each game. The top 4 after 23 games advance to the stepladder finals.


    Final Round One

    The top 16 advance to round robin match play. Players 17-48 eliminated, earn 1.100 Euro each.