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Reyes Wins in Jakarta; Filipinos Sweep Asian 9-Ball Tour
Sep 18, 2006, 9:40 AM

In the final leg of the 2006 San Miguel Asian 9-ball tour held at the Gran Melia Jakarta Hotel in Jakarta, Indonesia Sept. 15-17, Efren Reyes added the icing to a cake of a season for he and his Filipino friends. Reyes defeated local favorite Ricky Yang, 11- 6, in the final of the Jakarta leg to successfully defend his Jakarta crown and complete a historical Filipino sweep of the annual nation-hopping event.

Reyes also won the first event of the 2006 season in May in Ho Chi Minh City, while compatriots Ramil Gallego won in Bangkok in June, and Rodolfo Luat won in Kaohsiung in August. This is the first year in the tour's history that each leg winner has been a product of one nation.

Reyes didn't waste any time in the final, winning the lag and taking six of the first seven racks against the Indonesian, who was only able to score at the second rack.

Yang got into the groove, however, and won the next three racks out of four by capitalizing on a scratch by Reyes in the 11th, narrowing the gap, 4-7.

Reyes was in no way derailed. After a miss on the 2 ball by Yang, Reyes scouted out an easy 5-9 combo, and was right back on track.

Still, it was a valiant effort for the first time Indonesian finalist, cleaning out the 13th rack off a difficult Reyes safety on the 2 ball, and another runout in the 14th to bring the tally up to 6-8 in favor of the Filipino.

The turning point of the match came at the 15th rack when Reyes pocketed a miraculous shot on the 8-ball in the corner pocket. From there, Reyes cruised to victory after Yang blundered his placement of the 4 ball in the 17th rack, ultimately allowing the Filipino billiard icon to take the match, 11-6. Reyes won $10,000 for his efforts, while Yang settled for $5,000.

Reyes gained a finals berth by trumping Taiwanese Wang Hung-Hsiang in the semifinal, 11-6 while Ricky Yang defeated compatriot Muhammad Zulfikri in their semifinal showdown, 11-9.