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Svensson earns top qualifier honors for PBA World Championship finals


After six days of competition and 60 games on four different lane conditions, Sweden’s Jesper Svensson averaged 241 to earn top qualifier honors for the stepladder finals of the PBA World Championship.

The 22-year-old left-handed two-hander (pictured left) finished with a 14,465 60-game pinfall total at the National Bowling Stadium in Reno, Nev., Tuesday to lead right-handed two-hander Jason Belmonte(right) of Australia who qualified a distant second for the finals with a 14,129 pinfall total.

“Obviously a major (win) means more than the rest but it will be like bowling a new tournament,” said Svensson, who as top qualifier needs only to win one match for the title. “I have to forget that I led the qualifying rounds by so many pins and focus on the best 10 frames I can bowl.

“It’s really a different mindset than qualifying,” Svensson added. “If you bowl a bad frame or a bad game there’s plenty of time to make up for it. In the championship match, at the end of the day, it’s whoever throws it the best the quickest.”

In Tuesday’s final cashers’ round bowled on the 42-foot Scorpion lane condition, Svensson bowled games of 183, 255, 224, 224 and 246 after bowling games of 233, 247, 258, 257 and 255 earlier in the day on the 33-foot Cheetah lane condition.

The World Championship finals will be taped on Sunday, Nov. 19 at 3 p.m. EST/noon PST (live streamed on ESPN3, taped for telecast on ESPN on Dec. 31 at 1 p.m. EST).

The PBA World Championship is the crown jewel of the GEICO PBA World Series of Bowling IX, presented by Eldorado Reno Resorts Properties, and the final major championship of the PBA’s 2017 season. WSOB IX is also a part of the 2017-18 Go Bowling! PBA Tour schedule.

Svensson, already a six-time PBA Tour winner, will be trying for his second PBA major title after winning the 2016 PBA Tournament of Champions, while Belmonte, a 15-time Tour winner, will be trying for his ninth major, which would put him alone in third place among the PBA’s all-time major title winners. Neither player has won the PBA World Championship.

Belmonte will also be trying for his third major title of the season winning the Barbasol PBA Players Championship and 2017 United States Bowling Congress Masters earlier this year.

“This win would be important for a number of reasons,” said Belmonte, a three-time PBA Player of the Year. “It would be a major title I haven’t won and it would go a long way to securing another Player of the Year honor.”

Finishing third for the finals was seven-time Tour winner Ryan Ciminelli (left) of Cheektowaga, N.Y., who is also trying for his second major, after winning the 2015 U.S. Open. Ciminelli posted a 14,031 pinfall.

Two-time Tour winner Kyle Troup (right) of Taylorsville, N.C., another two-hander, earned the fourth qualifying position finishing with a 13,931 pinfall and PBA Rookie of the Year contender Matt Sanders of Evansville, Ind., bowled a 268 in the final game of the round to secure the fifth qualifying position for the finals with a 13,830 pinfall.

Sanders (left) won his first PBA Tour title earlier this season in the Billy Hardwick Memorial Open.

World Championship qualifying and cashers’ rounds were conducted on the 39-foot Chameleon, 45-foot Shark, 33-foot Cheetah and 42-foot Scorpion PBA lane conditioning patterns.

World Series of Bowling action continues Wednesday with PBA Chameleon Championship presented by Reno Tahoe and Shark Championship presented by Xtra Frame elimination rounds beginning at 11 a.m. PST. Fans can catch all the action on PBA’s online bowling channel Xtra Frame.

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From left: Jesper Svensson, Jason Belmonte, Ryan Ciminelli, Kyle Troup and Matt Sanders.

PBA World Championship – Cashers’ Round 4

Standings after Scorpion round, 60 games completed. Top five bowlers advance to the World Championship finals on Sunday, Nov. 19, 3 p.m. EST/noon PST.

1, Jesper Svensson, Sweden, 14,465
2, Jason Belmonte, Australia, 14,129
3, Ryan Ciminelli, Cheektowaga, N.Y., 14,031
4, Kyle Troup, Taylorsville, N.C., 13,931
5, Matt Sanders, Evansville, Ind., 13,830

Missed Cut:
6, Bill O’Neill, Langhorne, Pa., 13,794, $11,100
7, Francois Lavoie, Canada, 13,774, $10,000
8, Sean Rash, Montgomery, Ill., 13,760, $9,000
9, Tom Smallwood, Saginaw, Mich., 13,756, $8,500
10, Marshall Kent, Yakima, Wash., 13,747, $8,000
11, Matt McNiel, Minneapolis, Minn., 13,716, $7,500
12, Thomas Larsen, Denmark, 13,668, $7,000
13, Anthony Pepe, Elmhurst, N.Y., 13,643, $6,800
14, Liz Johnson, Palatine, Ill., 13,641, $6,500
15, Dom Barrett, England, 13,633, $6,200
16, Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., 13,632, $5,900
17, Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, 13,625, $5,600
18, Chris Warren, Grants Pass, Ore., 13,618, $5,400
19, Kim Bolleby, Thailand, 13,609, $5,000
20, Zacharay Wilkins, Canada, 13,595, $4,800
21, Rhino Page, Orlando, Fla., 13,591, $4,600
22, Brad Angelo, Lockport, N.Y., 13,572, $4,400
23, Sam Cooley, Australia, 13,556, $4,200
24, Muhammad Rafiq Ismail, Malaysia, 13,555, $4,000
25, BJ Moore III, Greensburg, Pa., 13,550, $3,800
26, Shota Kawazoe, Japan, 13,543, $3,600
27, Norm Duke, Clermont, Fla., 13,524, $3,400
28, Tobias Boerding, Germany, 13,515, $3,200
29, Dick Allen, Columbia, S.C., 13,511, $3,100
30, Francois Louw, South Africa, 13,495, $3,000
31, Arturo Quintero, Mexico, 13,492, $2,900
32, Kristopher Prather, Plainfield, Ill., 13,477, $2,850
33, Stuart Williams, England, 13,475, $2,800
34, Josh Blanchard, Mesa, Ariz., 13,470, $2,750
35, EJ Tackett, Huntington, Ind., 13,465, $2,700
36, Chris Via, Springfield, Ohio, 13,464, $2,650
37, Glenn Morten Pedersen, Norway, 13,457, $2,600
38, DJ Archer, Friendswood, Texas, 13,445, $2,550
39, Darren Tang, San Francisco, 13,438, $2,500
40, Tom Daugherty, Riverview, Fla., 13,411, $2,450
41, Connor Pickford, Plano, Texas, 13,370, $2,400
42, Daniel Fransson, Sweden, 13,356, $2,350
43, Trey Ford III, Bartlesville, Okla., 13,352, $2,300
44, Nick Kruml, Downers Grove, Ill., 13,328, $2,250
45, Richie Teece, England, 13,320, $2,200
46, Brandon Novak, Chillicothe, Ohio, 13,309, $2,150
47, Anthony Simonsen, Austin, Texas, 13,269, $2,100
48, Chris Loschetter, Avon, Ohio, 13,110, $2,050
49, Cristian Azcona, Puerto Rico, 13,053, $2,000

300 games (1) – Francois Lavoie.

PBA World Championship – Cashers’ Round 3

Standings after Cheetah round, 55 of 60 games completed. Top five bowlers after a total of 60 games will advance to the World Championship finals.

1, Jesper Svensson, Sweden, 13,333
2, Jason Belmonte, Australia, 12,961
3, Ryan Ciminelli, Cheektowaga, N.Y., 12,855
4, Matthew Sanders, Evansville, Ind., 12,738
5, Kyle Troup, Taylorsville, N.C., 12,737
6, Bill O’Neill, Langhorne, Pa., 12,680
7, Matthew McNiel, Minneapolis, Minn., 12,644
8, Francois Lavoie, Canada, 12,641
9, Anthony Pepe, Elmhurst, N.Y., 12,636
10, Sean Rash, Montgomery, Ill., 12,630
11, Marshall Kent, Yakima, Wash., 12,621
12, Tom Smallwood, Saginaw, Mich., 12,573
13, Dick Allen, Columbia, S.C., 12,553
14, Thomas Larsen, Denmark, 12,551
15, Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., 12,539
16, Muhammad Rafiq Ismail, Malaysia, 12,536
17, Brad Angelo, Lockport, N.Y., 12,528
18, Wes Malott, Pflugerville, Texas, 12,518
19, w-Liz Johnson, Palatine, Ill., 12,504
20, Zacharay Wilkins, Canada, 12,497
21, Francois Louw, South Africa, 12,496
22, BJ Moore III, Greensburg, Pa., 12,477
23, Glenn Morten Pedersen, Norway, 12,468
24, Tobias Börding, Germany, 12,456
25, Chris Warren, Grants Pass, Ore., 12,446
26, Kim Bolleby, Thailand, 12,445
27, Sam Cooley, Australia, 12,441
28, Chris Via, Springfield, Ohio, 12,433
29, Shota Kawazoe, Japan, 12,421
30, Rhino Page, Orlando, Fla., 12,420
31, Josh Blanchard, Mesa, Ariz., 12,419
32, Dom Barrett, England, 12,415
33, Norm Duke, Clermont, Fla., 12,403
34, EJ Tackett, Huntington, Ind., 12,387
35, Kristopher Prather, Plainfield, Ill., 12,386
36, Richie Teece, England, 12,349
37 (tie), Darren Tang, San Francisco, and Stuart Williams, England, 12,330
39, Tom Daugherty, Riverview, Fla., 12,315
40, Arturo Quintero, Mexico, 12,312
41, Connor Pickford, Plano, Texas, 12,281
42, Nick Kruml, Downers Grove, Ill., 12,279
43 (tie), Daniel Fransson, Sweden, and DJ Archer, Friendswood, Texas, 12,278
45, Brandon Novak, Chillicothe, Ohio, 12,256
46, Trey Ford III, Bartlesville, Okla., 12,229
47, Anthony Simonsen, Austin, Texas, 12,210
48, Cristian Azcona, Puerto Rico, 12,125
49, Chris Loschetter, Avon, Ohio, 12,105

Herbert Bickel

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