PDA

View Full Version : Surprises/impressions at the Open



Soflasnapper
10-30-2009, 06:10 PM
My main surprise was how many players I've come to expect to be there were missing.

A short list would include Efren, Bustamante, Santos Sambojan, Dennis Orcuello, Rudolfo Luat (among Filipinos), Canadian Tyler Edie, Americans Larry Nevel, Shannon Daulton, Buddy Hall, Scott Frost, Texan Sylver Ochoa, former champions David Howard, Jimmy Reid, Reed Pierce, and etc. (Some of them are in ill health or retired from active play, a hint to Mike LeBron, lol!)

That doesn't count the sometime/one-time players I've seen over the years that I've enjoyed watching, such as Paul Martel, Ivgani Stalev, some of the youngsters who have been there in the past, and others.

Despite a beefed up Kuwaiti contingent (some of whom played very strong, btw), the field was a little down at 220 or whatever, short of the 256 full field. I thought attendance seemed a little down as well, as the Accu-Stat booth commentators mentioned in a late week evening session.

I was very impressed with the deep runs made by Chris Bartram (who'd put Mika in the one loss side in the second round, Mika's only loss), Donnie Mills who has apparently stepped up to world-class level only losing hill-hill to the two finalists, and Kim Davenport. Then of course, Mika's repeat win under the worst possible conditions coming from the loss side (had to win 13 in a row, I think, to get there after that loss, plus handle an on-fire all tournament Ralf Souquet in the final).

I found the aluminum Delta racks used to be excessively noisy, as if a cook was clattering pots and pans in a nearby kitchen. Tink tink tink, like a freaking Little League game using aluminum bats. I vote against their use (how much money is saved if the racks are free from the sponsor anyway?).

The tv table pit area has been reconfigured, and I think for the better. The players have been relocated to the head of the table from the foot, and slightly set off from the nearby seating with a little 'moat' area of a couple feet. We were joking that this was Earl's best recent chance at another Open title, since his matches on that table wouldn't be so close to spectators (plus Rich and Cathy weren't there!).

Earl's experiments with odd accessories continues, and has gotten worse, if that's possible. Ankle weights on his shooting arm? Is it duct tape on his bridge fingers? WTF?

Soflasnapper
10-30-2009, 06:38 PM
A couple of other impressions.

Barry has about half the tables in the back room switched to Diamonds. Maybe that isn't new, but I didn't remember so many. A lot of the action back there is 10-ball, which also seems new to me.

The losing finalist the last two years was Ronnie Alcano, and he may have decided to gamble more than try for higher placing in the tournament. Wednesday eve/Thursday morning I was about to leave the CueMaster, dead tired, at about 3:30 am. Ronnie had just started a race to (I heard) 21 in 10-ball for some 5-figure sum (a lot of money spread on the table before the match began, sorted, counted, and put on the lights), giving the 7 to Keith Garrett, I think was the guy.

Prolly the most unusual thing I was there for, but didn't see at the time, and instead heard about, was Warren Kiamco losing at about a true 15-11 match score in his favor! You see, he neglected to put up two of his game wins, and when he got around to scoring finally, he put up one for his UK opponent Milling!?

Didn't seem right, but Warren was none the wiser until having accepted the loss and shaking hands. He protested to no avail, while just afterwards, Barry remarked when leaving the building that it was the most f-d up thing he'd seen. (Must have been a Ken Shuman call, given Barry's reaction.)

Rich R.
10-30-2009, 07:13 PM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: Soflasnapper</div><div class="ubbcode-body">My main surprise was how many players I've come to expect to be there were missing.

A short list would include Efren, Bustamante, Santos Sambojan, Dennis Orcuello, Rudolfo Luat (among Filipinos), Canadian Tyler Edie, Americans Larry Nevel, Shannon Daulton, Buddy Hall, Scott Frost, Texan Sylver Ochoa, former champions David Howard, Jimmy Reid, Reed Pierce, and etc. (Some of them are in ill health or retired from active play, a hint to Mike LeBron, lol!)

That doesn't count the sometime/one-time players I've seen over the years that I've enjoyed watching, such as Paul Martel, Ivgani Stalev, some of the youngsters who have been there in the past, and others.

Despite a beefed up Kuwaiti contingent (some of whom played very strong, btw), the field was a little down at 220 or whatever, short of the 256 full field. I thought attendance seemed a little down as well, as the Accu-Stat booth commentators mentioned in a late week evening session.

I was very impressed with the deep runs made by Chris Bartram (who'd put Mika in the one loss side in the second round, Mika's only loss), Donnie Mills who has apparently stepped up to world-class level only losing hill-hill to the two finalists, and Kim Davenport. Then of course, Mika's repeat win under the worst possible conditions coming from the loss side (had to win 13 in a row, I think, to get there after that loss, plus handle an on-fire all tournament Ralf Souquet in the final).

I found the aluminum Delta racks used to be excessively noisy, as if a cook was clattering pots and pans in a nearby kitchen. Tink tink tink, like a freaking Little League game using aluminum bats. I vote against their use (how much money is saved if the racks are free from the sponsor anyway?).

The tv table pit area has been reconfigured, and I think for the better. The players have been relocated to the head of the table from the foot, and slightly set off from the nearby seating with a little 'moat' area of a couple feet. We were joking that this was Earl's best recent chance at another Open title, since his matches on that table wouldn't be so close to spectators (plus Rich and Cathy weren't there!).

Earl's experiments with odd accessories continues, and has gotten worse, if that's possible. Ankle weights on his shooting arm? Is it duct tape on his bridge fingers? WTF?

</div></div>I believe there was a tournament in Asia somewhere and some of the players you mentioned may have been there instead of the Open. I believe Dennis Hatch was there too.

I agree about the sound of the Delta racks, but it is not a matter of how much money is "saved" by getting the racks for free from the sponsor. It is a matter of how much money the sponsor pays to have their racks used.