2019 World Pool Masters

The 2019 World Pool Masters[a] was a nine-ball pool tournament which took place in Gibraltar from 29–31 March 2019. It was the 26th edition of the World Pool Masters invitational tournament organised by Matchroom Sport. The event contained increased participation from 16 to 24 players, and increased total prize fund to $100,000. Spaniard David Alcaide won the event, defeating Greece's Alexander Kazakis in the final 9–8, doubling the final ball the length of the table to win. The reigning champion was Dutchman Niels Feijen who defeated Shane Van Boening of the United States in the previous year's final to win the title for the second time in his career. Feijen was defeated in the opening round by Alcaide.

World Pool Masters XXVI
Tournament information
Dates29–31 March 2019
VenueTercentenary Sports Hall, Victoria Stadium
CityGibraltar
Organisation(s)Matchroom Sport
FormatInvitational event
Total prize fund$100,000
Winner's share$25,000
Final
Champion David Alcaide (ESP)
Runner-up Alexander Kazakis (GRE)
Score9–8
2018
2020

FormatEdit

The event was played as a single elimination tournament, with players competing in a preliminary round based on rankings. The tournament prize fund was higher than that of previous years, with a total prize fund of $100,000 from $80,000 the year prior.[2] The event winner was awarded $25,000. The total prize money awarded is listed below:[3]

Place Prize money
Preliminary round $1,750
Last 16 $2,250
Quarter-finalist $3,750
Semi-finalist $7,500
Finalist $13,000
Winner $25,000
Total $100,000

Tournament summaryEdit

The 2019 World Masters was organised by Matchroom Sport and contested in the Tercentenary Sports Hall in Victoria Stadium, Gibraltar, as it had since 2017.[1][4] For 2019, the event saw an increase of eight players to see 24 compete over four rounds, with a preliminary qualification round, having only had 16 players in prior years.[5] The event saw a total prize pool of $100,000 with the winner receiving $25,000.[6] Matches for the event were held as race to 7 racks until the semi-finals, with races to 8 and 9 for semifinals and final respectively.[7][8] The Masters is the first Matchroom Sport event to be scored by CueScore as part of a multievent deal.[9] As defending champion and two time champion,[10] Niels Feijen was seeded first and received a bye to the round of 16.[7]

Preliminary roundEdit

The preliminary round took place on 29 March 2019 with eight matches played over two sessions at 3 and 7 p.m. CET.[11] Players competing ranked from 9–24, with the top 8 seeds receiving a bye to the round of 16.[12] Eklent Kaçi defeated the 1997 champion Earl Strickland 7–2; the latter commenting on the room temperature, and crowd reactions for his loss,[13] "It is too cold in here for me ... I am 58 years old and I need warmer conditions", before running down Kaçi saying “The guy is a good player. He is not a great player."[14][15]

Australian Justin Sajich defeated Finland's Petri Makkonen 7–4. Sajich commented after the match that he was grateful at playing at the event, calling it "dream come true".[15][16] Matt Edwards defeated Chris Melling 7–3, two players who had never met in competition prior.[17][18] David Alcaide defeated Francisco Sánchez Ruíz 7–3.[16] Both Alcaide and Ruiz had competed at the 2019 Gibraltar Open snooker event earlier in March, having won two qualifying matches. Ruiz reached the last 64, defeating professional Martin O'Donnell in the first round 4–3, whilst Alcaide lost 4–1 to David Gilbert.[15] Alex Pagulayan defeated China's Wu Jia-qing 7–4.[15] Elsewhere, Shane Van Boening defeated Kelly Fisher 7–2 and Albin Ouschan defeated Jeff de Luna 7–2, and Fedor Gorst defeated Naoyuki Ōi 7–2.[15]

Early roundsEdit

The last 16 players met in the first round, played over two sessions on 30 March 2019 at 1 and 7 p.m. CET.[11] Defending champion and first seed Niels Feijen was defeated 3–7 by 2017 champion David Alcaide.[19] Two-time winner Shane Van Boening won 7–6 over ladies number 1 Han Yu. Yu took a lead of 6–3, before van Boening won four racks to win the match 7–6.[19][20] Ko Pin-yi and Alex Pagulayan also went hill-hill, at 6–6, before Pagulayan won the deciding rack to also win 7–6.[19][21] In the final match of the first session, WPA world number 1 Alexander Kazakis defeated Justin Sajich 7–3.[19]

The second session featured Matt Edwards defeating Konrad Juszczyszyn 7–6. The match saw players share the first six racks, at 3–3, before Juszczysyn took three racks to lead 6–3. Edwards then took the remaining 4 racks to win the match.[22] Albin Ouschan and Joshua Filler also reached 6–6, before 2018 WPA World Nine-ball Championship winner Filler won the deciding rack.[23] In the other first round matches, Skyler Woodward overcame Fedor Gorst, and Eklent Kaçi defeated Jayson Shaw.[23]

The quarter-finals saw the remaining eight players compete, and was played 31 March 2019 at 3 p.m. CET.[24][25] In the first match, David Alcaide overcame Shane van Boening 7–3. Van Boening took a 3–0 lead, before Alcaide won seven straight racks to win.[25] Eklent Kaçi took an early 6–1 lead over Alex Pagulayan, however, Pagulayan took the next four racks to trail 6–5. In rack 12, Pagulayan missed a bank on the 2-ball, allowing Kaçi to clear to win 7–5.[25]

Third seed Alexander Kazakis faced Matt Edwards.[26][27] After tying at one-all, Kazakis won the next six racks to win 7–1.[28] The final quarter-final saw Skyler Woodwards defeat Albin Ouschan 7–3, with both players having been previous winners of the MVP at the Mosconi Cup.[25]

FinalsEdit

 
David Alcaide won his second World Pool Masters championship 9–8.

The semi-finals, played as races-to-eight rack matches, were held on 31 March 2019 at 7 p.m. CET, with the final played immediately afterwards.[24] David Alcaide faced Eklant Kaçi in the first semi-final, with Alcaide reaching the final of the event, thanks to a 8–3 win. The second semi-final saw Alexander Kazakis overcome Skyler Woodward 8–1 in a one-sided match.[29]

The final of the event was contested between David Alcaide and Alexander Kazakis, and played as a race to 9 racks match.[24] Kazakis looked in control of the match, winning all five of the opening racks to lead 5–0, and won three of the next eight to be one away from the title at 8–5. Alcaide won the next three racks to come-back and force a final rack, with the scores at 8–8. Alcaide broke broke in the final rack, but ran out of position on the 5-ball. After Alcaide failed a swerve shot, Kazakis took charge of the table, clearing down to the final ball, where he had left himself in a poor position for the pot. Kazakis decided to play a safety shot over attempting to double the ball to win the match. Despite a good safety, Alcaide banked the 9-ball to win the rack, and tournament.[29] Alcaide won the match and the event, his second Masters title, having also won the event in 2017.[30]

Main drawEdit

The following table denotes the event's draw and results. Numbers to the left of a player's names indicates their seeding, whilst bolding indicates the winner of a match.[7][23][31][32]

  Preliminary Round
First to 7 racks
Last 16
First to 7 racks
Quarterfinals
First to 7 racks
Semifinals
First to 8 racks
Final
First to 9 racks
                                               
11   David Alcaide (ESP) 7     1   Niels Feijen (NED) 3  
12   Francisco Sánchez Ruíz (ESP) 3     11   David Alcaide (ESP) 7  
  11   David Alcaide 7  
  10   Shane Van Boening 3  
10   Shane Van Boening (USA) 7 8   Han Yu (CHN) 6
19   Kelly Fisher (ENG) 2     10   Shane Van Boening (USA) 7  
  11   David Alcaide 8  
  9   Eklent Kaçi 3  
20   Wu Jia-qing (CHN) 4     4   Ko Pin-yi (TPE) 6  
23   Alex Pagulayan (CAN) 7     23   Alex Pagulayan (CAN) 7  
  23   Alex Pagulayan 5
  9   Eklent Kaçi 7  
9   Eklent Kaçi (ALB) 7 5   Jayson Shaw (SCO) 2
18   Earl Strickland (USA) 2     9   Eklent Kaçi (ALB) 7  
  11   David Alcaide 9
  3   Alexander Kazakis 8
22   Petri Makkonen (FIN) 4     3   Alexander Kazakis (GRE) 7  
21   Justin Sajich (AUS) 7     21   Justin Sajich (AUS) 3  
  3   Alexander Kazakis 7
  13   Matt Edwards 1  
24   Chris Melling (ENG) 3 6   Konrad Juszczyszyn (POL) 6
13   Matt Edwards (NZL) 7     13   Matt Edwards (NZL) 7  
  3   Alexander Kazakis 8
  7   Skyler Woodward 1  
15   Albin Ouschan (AUT) 7     2   Joshua Filler (GER) 6  
17   Jeffrey De Luna (PHL) 2     15   Albin Ouschan (AUT) 7  
  15   Albin Ouschan 3
  7   Skyler Woodward 7  
16   Fedor Gorst (RUS) 7 7   Skyler Woodward (USA) 7
14   Naoyuki Ōi (JPN) 2     16   Fedor Gorst (RUS) 4  

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ also known as World Pool Masters XXVI[1]
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External linksEdit