Yachio Kato captures the title in first JPBA Ladies event after the great earthquake


    2011 JPBA Ladies Tour #2

    Earns her 13th career pro title in the Miyazaki Pro-Am Open Tournament

    2011JPBALT02YachioKato.jpg2011JPBALT01HiromiMatsunaga.jpgIn the first tournament after the great earthquake, Yachio Kato (pictured left) of Tokyo captured her 13th career Japan Professional Bowlers Association women's title in the Miyazaki Pro-Am Open Tournament which was held in the Kyushu Region in South Japan from April 21-24, 2011.

    The 59-year-old ended a five-year title draught with a 225-217 victory against Hiromi Matsunaga en route to earn the 1.200.000 Yen winner's check or approximately US$14,627.

    Matsunaga (right), who was targeting for back-to-back JPBA titles after winning the season-opening Kansai Open Ladies Bowling Tournament, received 620.000 Yen ($7,557) for second place.

    Matsunaga started the game with an open frame after failing to convert the 4-6-7 split followed by a spare before she reeled off a four-bagger to take a 30-pin lead. Kato alternated strikes and spares in the first four frames, spare a 10-pin in the fifth and countered with a four-bagger to regain the lead.

    2011JPBALT02TomoeYoshikawa.jpg2011JPBALT02MasamiAbe.jpgWorking on a strike, Matsunaga was unable to connect for a double in the ninth frame, then struck in the tenth but left a 7-pin standing on her next shot failing to force Kato to strike on her first ball in the tenth frame. Needing to mar, Kato spared a 7-pin for the win before the left the 4-6-10 split on her fill ball.

    The top 16 players were seeded into two pools (A and B) of eight players each to determine the finalist in single-elimination head-to-head matches. In the final of Pool A, Kato eliminated Tomoe Yoshikawa (left), 235-212, while Matsunaga topped Masami Abe (right) in the B Pool final, 203-195. Yoshikawa and Abe tied for third place worth 370.000 Yen ($4,510) apiece.

    Junia Yoshida of Japan Bowling Promotion reports that the third stop of the 2011 JPBA Ladies Tour, the 2011 Pro Test originally scheduled for March/April, was postponed and is now scheduled for the beginning of May.

    Photos and results courtesy of JPBA.


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    2011 Miyazaki Pro-Am Open Tournament (April 21-24, 2011)

    Total Prize Fund: 5 Million Yen (approx. US$61,000)

    Championship Round:
    1. Yachio Kato, 1.200.000 Yen (US$14,627)
    2. Hiromi Matsunaga, 620.000 Yen ($7,557)
    3. Tomoe Yoshikawa, 370.000 Yen ($4,510)
    (tie) Masami Abe, 370.000 Yen ($4,510)

    Playoff Results:
    First match: Matsunaga def. Abe, 203-195
    Second Match: Kato def. #2 Yoshikawa, 235-212
    Championship: Kato def. Matsunaga, 225-217.

    Frame-by-frame results (pdf file)