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Six players surge into the top 12 at Brunswick Euro Challenge


The leaderboard of the 14th Brunswick Euro Challenge got a whole new look as six players surged into the top 12 in Thursday’s Squads 9, 10 & 11 at Dream-Bowl Palace in Munich, Germany. The top 12 qualifiers will earn a first-round bye for Sunday’s finals.

Ahmad Muaz (pictured above) of Malaysia rolled one of two 300 games in squad 9 and posted the highest scratch set of the week to catapult himself into second place of the standings with a six-game total of 1533 and the field-best 255.50 average.

Muaz followed his 258 opening game with the fifth perfecto of this event and closed with 235, 215, 256 and 269 but came up just six pins short of Shayna Ng’s 1539 total. The Singaporean standout (left) continued to lead the 250-player field from 36 countries with 1499 scratch (249.83 average) and 1539 including handicap.

Ng’s team mate Jasmine Yeong Nathan, currently in 55th place with 1363, won the qualifying in the 2016 Brunswick Euro Challenge with exactly the same number.

Pontus Andersson (right) of Sweden was mere 11 pins behind Muaz with 1522, including six games between 279 and 235, to jump into fourth place. The World Youth champion is sandwiched between South Africa’s Francois Louw (left; 1524) and Syafiq Ridhwan (1500) of Malaysia who sit in third and fifth place, respectively.

World Trios champion Carsten Warming Hansen (right) of Denmark had the other 300 game on Thursday in the fifth game of squad 9 to leap into sixth place with 1483.

Thailand’s Yannaphon Larp-apharat fell to seventh place with 1460 and was followed by squad 10 leaders Arturo Quintero of Mexico (left) and Jimmy Mortensen od Denmark. Quintero had five games between 220 and 258 and a high game of 279 to take eighth place with 1453. Mortensen used a pair of 288 games for 1445, good for ninth place overall.

Two-time PBA champion Marshall Kent is the only U.S. bowler in the top 12 in 10th place with 1444, immediately followed by Rickle Kam of Hong Kong, who is 11th with 1442.

Rounding out the top 12 is former Swedish youth international Kim Bolleby (right), who now bowls for Thailand. Bolleby had six games between 221 and 257 and a 1441 series, still 16 pins lower than the cut to the top 12 in last year’s event (1457, 242.83 avg.).

Dom Barrett (left) of England led squad 11 on Thursday evening with 1426 and an average of 237.67 sit in 21st place heading into the penultimate day of qualifying. Barrett, the No. 3 on the all-time European Bowling Tour title list with 12 victories, had games of 257, 278, 228, 237, 234 and 192.

The cut for 50th place already surpassed last year’s figure by one pin. Mike Harles of Germany holds the last spot to advance by qualifying total with 1386 or an average of 231.

Qualifying continues on Friday, March 24, with squads 12-14 starting at noon, 4 and 8 p.m. Central European Time (CET).

The 14th Brunswick Euro Challenge is the third stop on the 2017 European Bowling Tour and the second and last EBT “Platinum” events this season, the highest of the five EBT tournament categories (platinum, gold, silver, bronze and satellite).

The BEC, which also kicks off the World Bowling Tour 2017, will be held from March 18-26 at Dream-Bowl Palace in Unterföhring in suburban Munich, Germany, the biggest bowling center in Europe with 52 lanes.

Players will compete for total prize fund of 104.000 Euro with 11.400 Euro going to the winner, 8.500 Euro to the first runner-up and 5.500 Euro to the third place finisher. Low to cash is 64th place, worth 800 Euro.

Women receive 8 pins handicap each game (up to 292 – maximum score is 300), an equality handicap provided to women in all EBT events. The top three women after qualifying receive 1.200, 700 and 500 Euro bonuses, respectively.

Qualifying kicks off Saturday, March 18, and runs through Saturday, March 25, with the final Squad 18 slated for 8 p.m. Central European Time (CET). Qualifying concludes with the ultimate one-game Desperado Squad at 11.30 p.m.

Total 64 players qualify for the finals on Sunday, March 26, including the top 50 in the overall qualifying standings, the top 5 each from a separate leaderboard of the squads conducted March 21-22 and 18-19, and the top 4 of the Desperado Squad.

The top 12 qualifiers receive a first-round bye. The other 52 players bowl six games scratch to cut to the top 16 who will join the top 12 qualifiers in Round Two. Those 28 bowl another six games scratch after which the field is trimmed to the top 8 for match play.

Round Two pinfall will be carried forward. During the seven games of match play, players receive 30 bonus pins for winning a match and 15 pins each in the event of a tie.

The top 3 players with the highest 13-game total, including bonus pins, will determine the champion in a stepladder final. The No. 3 seed bowls the No. 2 seed and the winner of the semifinal match takes on the No. 1 seed for the title and the 11.300 Euro top prize.

The 2017 European Bowling Tour features 11 tournaments in 9 countries including two “Platinum”, two “Gold”, one “Silver”, three “Bronze” and three “Satellite” events, which offer total prize fund of roughly 560.000 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 8 men and top 8 women, who will be eligible to compete in the 11th EBT Masters February 12, 2018 in Tilburg, Netherlands.

The World Bowling Tour is sanctioned by World Bowling, the governing body for the sport of bowling. The tour is the premier international bowling series that is hosted in numerous, unique cities around the globe.

Due to an agreement between World Bowling and the Professional Bowlers Association (PBA), World Bowling Tour tournaments will award a PBA Tour title if the winner is a PBA member who doesn’t accept handicap pins.

The World Bowling Tour 2017 consists of nine stops in Bahrain, Germany, Kuwait (2), Sweden, Saudi Arabia, Thailand and USA (2).

Men and women compete for points to earn places on the World Bowling Tour rankings. The points system is based on a continuous two-year cycle, where points include every event from the previous two year format. “Majors” award double points.

The top three men and top three women in the annual points list will compete in the season-ending World Bowling Tour Finals (date and venue tba).

World Bowling provides governance to international bowling and is made up of 134 bowling international federations. For more information on the World Bowling Tour, click here.

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2017 Brunswick Euro Challenge – Qualifying Standings after Squad 11/18

Top 50 qualifiers, top 5 from March 21-22 squads (places 51-55), top 5 from March 18-19 squads (places 56-60), and top 4 of the Desperado Squad will advance to the finals on Sunday, March 26.

300 games (6) – Muhd Jaris Goh, Shayna Ng, Jazreel Tan, Kuek Qi En, Ahmad Muaz, Carsten Warming Hansen.

Herbert Bickel

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