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Teemu Putkisto leads qualifying day 5 to move into sixth place in Helsinki


Starting the fifth day of qualifying at the Brunswick Ballmaster Open in eighth place with 1440 total, Teemu Putkisto of Finland led squad 9 with 1446 (241 average) to leap into sixth place in the overall standings of the European Bowling Tour “gold” level event, currently underway at Tali Bowling Center in Helsinki, Finland.

Putkisto (pictured right and above) averaged 253.20 for the first five games (238, 289, 252, 259 and 228) before he closed with his low game of 180, yet improved his previous high score from squad 7 by six pins.

Shayna Ng (left) of Singapore continued to lead the 483-player field, 413 men and 70 women from 23 countries, with 1497 total, including 8 pins handicap per game, an equality handicap provided to women in all EBT events.

Malaysia’s Alex Liew (right) and Shalin Zulkifli (left) remained in second and third place with 1465 and 1464 (incl. handicap), respectively. Liew had five games between 214 and 246 and a high game of 285 to finish squad 9 in third place with 1427.

2017 Ballmaster Open champion Daphne Tan maintained fourth place with 1448, including 48 pins handicap. Rounding out the top 5 is PBA and USBC Hall of Famer Parker Bohn III (right), United States, who was tied with Putkisto at 1446, but has the higher last game (215), which breaks the tie.

Timmy Tan (left) of Malaysia put his stamp on day 5 by rolling the third 300 game of the 48th edition in squad 9 and by co-leading squad 10 with 1439 total and an average of 239.83.

Tan started squad 9 with 12 consecutive strikes and will join Finns Timi Taalas and Lauri Sipilä and any other bowler who achieves perfection in a winner-takes-all roll-off for 2.000 Euro at the end the tournament.

He followed the perfecto with 224 and three games under 200 before he closed with 265 for 1330 to improve his previous high score by 11 pins. In squad 10, Tan improved upon his 1330 series by 109 pins when he tied with Pontus Andersson of Sweden at 1439. From left: Andersson, Tan and Juhani Tonteri.

Andersson won the squad due to the higher last game, 220 to 201, and the duo moved in a three-way tie with 2016 QubicaAMF Bowling World Cup champion Jenny Wegner (left) of Sweden. Thanks to a 257 last game, Wegner ranks 9th, with Andersson in 10th and Tan in 11th place.

Juhani Tonteri (right) of Finland was mere two pins behind with 1437, good for 12th place overall. 2017 European Bowling Tour men’s point ranking leader Carsten Warming Hansen of Denmark closed squad 9 with 245, 257 and 268 for 1432 total to leap into 13th place.

Robin Persson of Sweden rolled 278, 259 and 257 in games two through four to take 14th place with 1425. His compatriot Markus Jansson (left) posted 267 and 254 in games two and three to become the fifth player in squad 9 who surpassed the 1400-mark to sit in 18th place with 1414.

Jesper Svensson (right) of Sweden, who owns eight European Bowling Tour titles along with seven Professional Bowlers Association titles, currently holds the 40th and last place to advance with 1367 or an average of 227.83.

Qualifying commences Friday, January 12 with squads 11, 12 and 13 scheduled to start at 10 a.m. 2 and 6 p.m. Eastern European Time (EET).

Photos courtesy of Seija Lankinen.

The 48th Brunswick Ballmaster Open will be held from January 5-14 at 36-lane Tali Bowling Center in Helsinki, the capital and largest city of Finland. Other than last year, when the BBO was a “platinum” level tournament, the 48th edition of the prestigious event is one of two “gold” events this season, the second highest of five EBT categories (satellite, bronze, silver, gold and platinum).

The BBO offers total prize money of 83.700 Euro, including all extra prizes, with 10.000 Euro going to the winner, 6.000 Euro to the runner-up and 4.000 Euro apiece to the third and fourth place finishers. Low to cash is 48th place, worth 800 Euro.

The tournament offers 3.000 Euro for the first 300 game, or for the highest game if there will be no 300 game.

Qualifying (six games, unlimited re-entries) begins Friday, Jan. 5, with squads 1 & 2 and concludes Saturday, Jan. 13, with squad 16 followed by the ultimate one-game Desperado Squad slated for 7 p.m. Eastern European Time (EET).

Women receive 8 pins handicap each game (up to 292 – maximum score is 300), an equality handicap provided to women in all EBT events.

Total 48 players, including the top 40 from the overall qualifying standings, the top 2 from a separate leaderboard of squads 9-10 and the top 3 of squads 1-8, who are not among the top 40 plus the top 3 from the Desperado Squad, qualify for the finals. The top 12 qualifiers receive a first-round bye.

The other 36 finalists bowl six games starting from scratch with the top 24 advancing to the second round. Those 24 join the top 12 qualifiers to bowl eight games starting from scratch.

The top 16 players will be seeded into two groups according to their positions: Group A (1, 4, 5, 8, 9, 12, 13 and 16) and Group B (2, 3, 6, 7, 10, 11, 14 and 15). Round 2 pins carry over. The group phase features seven games of round robin match play (no position round). During match play, players receive 30 bonus pins for winning a match and 15 pins each in the event of a tie.

The 15-game totals, including all bonus pins, will determine the top two players in each group who advance to the semi-finals (B1 vs. A2 and A1 vs. B2). The semi-final winners will bowl for the title (all one-game head-to-head matches).

The 2018 European Bowling Tour features 13 tournaments in 10 countries including two “platinum”, two “gold”, three “silver”, three “bronze” and three “satellite” events, which will offer total prize fund of more than 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 12th EBT Masters July 8, 2019 at Bowling Chamartín in Madrid, Spain.

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2018 Brunswick Ballmaster Open – Qualifying Standings after Squad 10/16

Top 40 from the overall qualifying standings, the top 2 from a separate leaderboard of squads 9-10 and the top 3 of squads 1-8, plus the top 3 from the Desperado Squad will advance to the finals. The top 12 qualifiers will receive a first-round bye.

300 games (3) – Timi Taalas, Lauri Sipilä, Timmy Tan.

Herbert Bickel

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