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Stroke of Genius

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Video provided by Accu-Stats Video Productions

World Pool Championship

Player: Jasmin Ouschan
Event: World Pool Championship
Location: Milton Keynes, U.K.
Date: June 8, 2021

The opening qualification round of the World Pool Championship seemingly gave players a bit of time to get in stroke. The 128 players were divided into 16 double-elimination brackets, with four in each group of eight advancing to the knockout stage. But that time was over when Jeffrey De Luna and Jasmin Ouschan faced each other in an elimination match after both dropped their first sets.

Even worse for the Philippines' title hopeful, he fell behind, 5-1, to the Austrian star in the race-to-9. Needing to manufacture some momentum during a safety battle, De Luna left his opponent in the position shown in the diagram. With the 8 blocking a clear path to the 3 ball, Ouschan needed to take an indirect route to the object ball. Loading up on low, right English, she struck the cue ball with a firm stroke, sending it off two rails and nearly fully into the 3 ball.

The cue ball inched toward the 5 ball along the long rail, spinning like a top all the while thanks to the English. The 3 ball took off toward the opposite side rail, eventually heading directly for the 4. Both balls came to a stop just inches off the same long rail, with the 5 ball dropped between them as a blocker.

With shots like this, Ouschan went on to an impressive 9-5 victory over De Luna, before edging British pro Mark Gray in her next match to qualify for the 64-player knockout round. Unfortunately, her run ended with an 11-4 loss to Serbia's Aleksa Pecelj in that first do-or-die match. All was not lost, however, as Ouschan's brother, Albin, went on to conquer the event for his second world championship title. Seems like this cue sports thing works for the Ouschan family.

(Video clip provided by Accu-Stats Video Productions.)

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