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Finns Palermaa, Jähi shoot into Doubles lead


2016MECJoonasJahi2016MECOskuPalermaaPBA star Osku Palermaa and Joonas Jähi of Finland averaged 245.25 in the third squad Tuesday morning at bowling center Bowling Stones in Brussels, Belgium, en route to shoot into the lead in the doubles preliminaries at the 2016 Men’s European Championships.

The Finns had six consistently high games of 499, 487, 500, 461, 495 and 501 to lead the field of 84 duos after three of four squads with record 2943 total. The Finns also set a new Championship record for three games with 1486.

2016MECJesperAgerboJimmyMortensenJähi (above left) led the duo with 1525 (254.17), the highest six-game series ever at European Championships, and two-hander Palermaa (above right) added 1418. Photos courtesy of Fred Makukatin

Overnight leaders Jesper Agerbo and Jimmy Mortensen (left, l-r) of Denmark, who were 117 pins back, slipped to second place averaging 235.50. The Danes broke the previous records for three and six games in squad 1 with 1480 and 2826.

Jouni Helminen and Jouko Kuossari of Finland previously held the record for three games with 1478 (1993 – Malmoe, Sweden), while Swedes Robert Andersson and Martin Larsen previously owned the record for six games with 2818 (2007 – Vienna, Austria). Helminen, Kuossari still hold the record for one game with 557.

2016MECPascalWinternheimerTobiasBording2016MECMarcoBaadeOliverMorigWith the final squad yet to go, places three and four belonged to Germany. Pascal Winternheimer and Tobias Börding (left, l-r) were second in squad 3 with 2802 (233.50) to leap into third place and to push back their teammates, squad 2 leaders Oliver Morig and Marco Baade (right, r-l), who now sit in fourth and last place to advance to the medal round with 2790 (232.50).

Sweden’s Peter Hellström and Markus Jansson (2746; 228.83) and the first German team, Andreas Gripp and Frank Drevenstedt (2718; 226.50), fell out of the top 4 to fifth and eighth place, respectively.

Swedes Jesper Svensson and Martin Larsen (2734) and Denmark’s Carsten Warming Hansen and Thomas Larsen (2722) squeezed into sixth and seventh place, resp.

Singles gold medalist Agerbo, who added 1518 in doubles to the 1492 in singles, continued to lead in all-events (combined results of the Singles, Doubles, Trios and Team preliminaries) with 3010 total and an average of 250.83 for 12 games.

Thanks to his 1525 series, Jähi jumped from 9th to second place with 2925. With 168 out of 218 players having completed 12 games, Kert Truus of Estonia sits in third place with 2814 (234.50).

Truus has rolled one of three perfect games so far. He is the only bowler in MEC championships history with multiple 300s. Like Truus, Scotsman Steven Gill had a 300 game in the second game in Singles. Ben Fishler of Israel achieved perfection in doubles squad 2.

The doubles preliminaries conclude with squad 4 scheduled to start at 1.45 p.m. Central European Summer Time (CEST). The medal round commences with the semifinals at 6 p.m. followed by the gold medal match at 6.45 p.m.

2016MECLogo2The 2016 Men’s European Championships will be held from August 17-28 at Bowling Stones, a 36-lane QubicaAMF-equipped bowling center in Brussels, Belgium. The nine-day competition started on Saturday, August 20, and culminates with the masters finals on Sunday, August 28.

Record 218 athletes from 37 European Tenpin Bowling Federation (ETBF) member federations – Austria, Belarus, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, England, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Scotland, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine, Wales and the host country Belgium – participate in the event.

Each team consists of maximum six players, who compete for gold, silver and bronze medals in singles, doubles, trios, five-player teams, all-events and masters.

Singles, doubles, trios and team events features six games preliminaries with the top 4 advancing to the playoffs in one-game format, seeded 1 to 4 according to their position in the prelims. No. 1 bowls No. 4 and No. 2 takes on No. 3. The winners bowl for gold and silver and the losers share the bronze medals.

The top three players with the highest 24-game total (combined scores in the singles, doubles and team preliminaries) receive the medals in all-events.

The top 24 in all-events advance to single-elimination masters match play in best-of-three games format. The top 8 receive one bye.

In each round, the highest seeded player bowls the lowest seeded player, the second-highest seeded player bowls the second-lowest seeded player, and so on. Winners advance and losers will be eliminated. The remaining two players bowl for gold and silver and the losers of the semifinals share the bronze medals.

The 2016 Men’s European Championships serve as the qualifying event for male bowlers competing in the X World Games 2017 in Wroclaw, Poland. The top 5 countries with the two highest positioned players in All-Events qualify for the World Games. The bowling competition will be held July 20-24 at Sky Bowling.

The Championships also serve as the qualifier for the 2017 World Championships for men and women, to be held at Cozmo Bowling Center in Salmiya, Kuwait Dec. 4-18. The top 12 men’s teams in Brussels will qualify for the combined World Championships.

Photos courtesy of Gisela Göbel.

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2016 Men’s European Championships ready to go

2016 MEC Doubles Preliminaries – Standings after Squad 3/4

Top 4 advance to the medal round

300 games (1) – Ben Fishler, Israel.

2016 MEC All-Events – Standings after Doubles Squad 3/4

After preliminaries in singles, doubles, trios and team (total 24 games), top 3 earn the medals; top 24 advance to Masters match play; top 8 receive one bye

Herbert Bickel

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