Thomas Larsen achieves perfection; rolls 300 in Squad 13 to take the lead in Qatar Open


    2014 European Bowling Tour #19

    Dane becomes the first player to crack the 1500-bar, leads 102-player field from 22 countries into the final qualifying day; score to make the cut in 34th place raised by 67 pins to 1310 (218.33 average)

    2014EBT16ThomasLarsen.jpgCurrent European Bowling Tour point ranking leader Thomas Larsen (pictured left) of Denmark is the newest leader at the Qatar Open, thanks to the perfect 300 game he fired during his 1503-game series in Qualifying Squad 13 Tuesday afternoon at Qatar Bowling Center in Doha.

    The 25-year-old four-time EBT champion, who has also won two titles on the 2014 World Bowling Tour which counted as PBA titles, both in the Middle East (Abu Dhabi & Kuwait), rolled games of 211, 288, 300, 192, 266 and 246, an average of 250.50, to become the first player in the 14th edition of the European Bowling Tour "Platinum" and World Bowling Tour "major" event, who cracked the 1500-bar (250 average).

    2014PBA09SeanRash.jpg2014EBT17MikeFagan.jpgLarsen, who received a $250 bonus for the highest series on Tuesday, leads a field of 102 players from 22 countries into the final day of qualifying.

    Places 2 to 5 belonged to four PBA and Team USA members. PBA Player of the Year 2011-12, 8-time titlist Sean Rash (left), took over the lead in Squad 12 and finished the day in second place with 1456 (242.67) including high games of 267 and 279.

    Mike Fagan (right), who owns 4 PBA & 5 EBT titles, was next to Larsen in Squad 13 with 1454 to land in third place in the overall qualifying standings. Previous leader, PBA rookie Marshall Kent (below left), slipped to fourth place with 1448.

    2014EBT19MarshallKent2.jpg2014EBT16TommyJones.jpgPBA Player of the Year 2005-06 Tommy Jones (right) moved into fifth place with 1432. Jones own 15 PBA titles including three WBT titles. All four will be on the team that represents the United States in the 2014 Men's World Championships which will be held from Dec. 4-15 at Khalifa International Bowling Center in Abu Dhabi, UAE.

    Rounding out the top 10, who will enjoy a first-round bye, was the best Qatari bowler, Ghanim M Aboujassoum, with 1389 and an average of 231.50. With 14 of 17 qualifying squads in the books, Yousif Falah of Bahrain holds the 34th and last spot to advance with 1310 and an average of 218.33.

    2014EBT16DianaZavjalova.jpg2014TeamUSADanielleMcEwan.jpgFour of the seven women in the field are above cut line heading into the last day of qualifying. USBC Queens champion Diana Zavjalova of Latvia was in 25th place with 1336 including 48 pins handicap, immediately followed by 2014 PABCON Masters champion Danielle McEwan (right) in 26th place with 1335.

    Former World Champion Mai Ginge Jensen (1313) of Denmark and Sweden's Victoria Johansson (1312) were mere three and two pins ahead of Falah in 32nd and 33rd place, respectively.

    Qualifying continues Wednesday, Nov. 26, with squads 15-17 starting at noon, 4 and 8 p.m. local time and concludes with the one-game Desperado Squad slated for 11 p.m. The bowler with the highest six-game series on Wednesday will receive a $250 bonus.

    2014QatarOpenLogo2.jpg The 14th Qatar Bowling Open is the 19th and final stop of the 2014 European Bowling Tour and will be held from Nov. 21-27 at the Qatar Bowling Center in Doha. With total prize fund of 161,000 U.S. Dollar or roughly 125,000 Euro the Qatar Open is one of two "Platinum" tournaments this season, the EBT's highest tournament category.

    $40,000 will be going to the winner, $20,000 to the runner-up and $7.000 apiece to the third and fourth place finishers. Women receive 8 pins handicap each game (max. is 300), a standard on the European Bowling Tour.

    Qualifying (6 games, unlimited re-entries) runs from Friday, Nov. 21 through Wednesday, Nov. 26 with the final Squad 17 scheduled to start at 8 p.m. local time. Qualifying will conclude with the one-game Desperado Squad slated for 11 p.m.

    Local Time is Arabia Standard Time (AST) - Central European Time (GST -2 hours), Eastern Standard Time (GST -8 hours) and Hong Kong Time (GST +5 hours).

    Total of 43 players including the top 34 in the overall qualifying standings, the top 2 each of the Nov. 21 (#1 & 2), 22 (#3-5) and 23 squads (#6-8) and the top 3 of the Desperado Squad advance to the finals on Thursday, Nov. 27. The top 10 qualifiers will receive a first-round bye.

    The other 33 finalists will bowl six games scratch with the top 18 advancing to the second round. Those 18 and the 10 qualifying leaders will roll another six-game block scratch to cut to the top 4, who will advance to the semifinals.

    The No. 1 bowls No. 4 and the No. 2 bowls No. 3 with the two-game total pinfall determining the winner. The two semifinal winners will bowl for the title and the 30.000 Euro top prize in the championship match (two games total pins).

    2014EBTLogo_small.jpg In its 15th season, the 2014 European Bowling Tour features 19 tournaments in 13 countries including two Platinum, six Gold, three Silver and eight Satellite tournaments. Total prize fund is almost one million Euro.

    The top 50 men and the top 50 women in each event receive ranking points. Those points will be tabulated throughout the season to determine the top 12 men and top 12 women, who will compete in the eighth EBT Masters July 6, 2015 at Bowling ChamartĂ­n in Madrid, Spain, immediately following the III Brunswick Madrid Challenge.

    WBTLogo_small.jpg The 2014 Qatar Bowling Open is also the third stop of the 2015 World Bowling Tour and will award a PBA international title if won by a PBA member. In order for a woman to earn a PBA Tour title, she must bowl the event without receiving handicap pins.

    The 2015 World Bowling Tour, which got underway in October with the PBA World Championship, currently consists of 15 tournaments in Arabia (6), United States (5), Asia (2) and Europe (2).

    Players earn ranking points based on how they finish in each event. The current points system is based on a continuous two-year cycle. The top three men and top three women in the points list will compete in the season-ending World Bowling Tour Finals in November in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States.


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    14th Qatar Bowling Open - Qualifying Standings after Squad 14/17

    Total of 43 players including the top 34 in the overall qualifying standings, the top 2 each of the Nov. 21 (places 35 & 36), Nov. 22 (places 37 & 38) and Nov. 23 squads (places 39 & 40) plus the top 3 of the Desperado Squad advance to the finals on Thursday, Nov. 27. The top 10 qualifiers will receive a first-round bye.

    300 games (2) - Magnus Johnson (SWE), Thomas Larsen (DEN).