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Daniella Buzzelli, Hermann Wimmer capture Italy Senior Open titles


Daniella Buzzelli of Italy and defending champion Hermann Wimmer of Germany captured the women’s and men’s titles of the Italy Senior Open Sunday, June 2, at Reno Bowling in Bologna, Italy. The tournament was the fourth stop on the 2017 International Seniors Bowling Tour.

The Italy Senior Open 2017 attracted an entry list of 116 competitors, with the majority coming from Italy. 31 participants only were from other countries.

The format for the tournament was two six game qualifying blocks, with re-entries allowing the lowest blocks to be replaced. For those not able to qualify through the main leaderboard, there were additional opportunities through Turbo games and Early Bird qualification.

Age bonus started at age 51 (1 pin per game), then increased a pin for every additional year of age with no limit. As with all ISBT events, there was a separate division for ladies.

Qualifying started a week before finals day, and in total there were 24 qualifying squads. The early squads, which showed a good scoring pace, were dominated by Italians, Marco Borbeggiani with 1409, Graziano Pachera with 1407 and in the ladies division Alessandra Morra with a huge 1369 block.

Monday saw further good blocks from the Italians with Loris Masetti setting a new high of 1449, and Morra posting a second good block of 1271 to have a commanding position at the top of the leaderboard. Masetti had a further good block on Tuesday to take an early lead in the overall rankings.

The Wednesday squads saw a steady flow of good blocks over 1300, with Masetti extending his overall lead with a 1352 block.

On Thursday, the overseas bowlers started to make their mark with Belgians Georgio Desimio and Roger Pieters both having blocks just over 1400. Thursday also saw the cutoff for Early Bird section. Only bowlers who had completed two blocks by Thursday could qualify through the Early Bird route.

Friday saw more big scores from the overseas players. Defending champion Hermann Wimmer of Germany, the 2016 Italy Senior Open champion, had a starting block of 1524, while Claude Escarguel of France found two good blocks to stand top in the overall standings.

There were four final squads on Saturday. Wimmer found another big block of 1504 to take the overall qualifying lead, while Christer Danielsson of Sweden, a two-time winner this season in Arthur’s 12th Senior Open and Alsace Senior Open posted 1522 to ease him into second place overall, ahead of Escarguel.

The cut for the final was 24th place, this going to Stefano Beltrami, Italy, with 2671. An additional eight places in the finals would be filled by Early Bird and Turbo qualifiers.

In the ladies division, two good blocks from Maria Grazia Matrullo, Italy, moved her into second place in the overall rankings, well behind Morra. Their fellow countrywomen Daniela Buzzelli and Maria Grazia Locatelli were third and fourth with 2016 Italy Senior Open winner Beate Albert of Germany in the fifth and last qualifying position.

An additional three places in the finals would be filled by Early Bird and Turbo qualifiers.

The 32 male players from qualifying were then divided into four groups of eight bowlers, each playing a round robin format. The top two from each group progressed to the grand final, which was another 8 game round robin.

In the Blue Group, Aurelio Briganti of Italy was the clear winner with Roger Pieters just holding on for the second place slot. The Green Group was won by Marco Reviglio, Italy, with second place being snatched at the end by Steven Jeeves of England with games of 258, 244 and 248.

The Red Group was dominated by Christer Danielsson, who averaged 238 to win by a substantial margin from Patrick Rolland of France. The final Yellow Group was won by Luciano Marsero, Italy, ahead of Hermann Wimmer.

The picture above shows the top 8 men and women finalists.

In the men’s final, Danielsson and Wimmer were in a class of their own with the lead changing several times between them. Before the last game, Wimmer had a 35 pin lead and despite a 247 last game from Christer Danielsson he maintained a six-pin lead to take the title for the second successive year. Steven Jeeves again finished strongly to take third place.

L-R Christer Danielsson (2nd), champion Hermann Wimmer and Steven Jeeves (3rd).

In the women’s final, Alessandra Morra, the clear qualifying leader, struggled over the first few games, with Maria Rosaria Matrullo leading after three games. However, Daniella Buzzelli bowled consistently to open a small lead which she held onto to take the win, ahead of Beate Albert and Morra.

L-R Beate Albert (2nd), winner Daniella Buzzelli and Alessandra Morra (3rd).

The next stop on the 2017 ISBT is the Böblingen Senior Open, which will be held July 8-16 at Dream Bowl in Böblingen, Germany. Full details are available at the ISBT website.

Story and Results courtesy of Tony Brown.

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Italy Senior Open 2017 – Men’s Round Robin Match Play Finals

Players with position, country, age bonus, 7-game total, including bonus pins

Italy Senior Open 2017 – Women’s Round Robin Match Play Finals

Players with position, country, age bonus, 7-game total, including bonus pins

Italy Senior Open 2017 – Men’s Round One

Top 2 players of each group advance to the finals.

Blue Group

Green Group

Red Group

Yellow Group

Italy Senior Open 2017 – Men’s Qualifying

Top 24 qualifiers plus two players from Turbo Games (25th and 54th place) and six Early Birds (places 26-31) advance to the group phase.

Italy Senior Open 2017 – Women’s Qualifying

Top 5 qualifiers plus one player from Turbo Games (16th place) and two Early Birds (places 6 and 7) advanced to the finals.

Herbert Bickel

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