BIG NAMES ADVANCING AT PREDATOR GERMANY OPEN
Sanjin Pehlivanovic, a former World Junior 9-Ball Champion, become European 10-Ball Champion earlier this year and has proved those credentials so far at the Predator Germany Open where he has reached the single elimination stage with two straight-sets victories.
After defeating Hajo Meier of Germany on the opening day Pehlivanovic, of Bosnia and Herzegovina, faced Swiss player Michael Schneider during Wednesday’s action. The 20-year-old European champion broke well, save for a scratch at 3-0 up, to take the first set 4-1. Schneider won the opening game of the second set but left his opponent straight on the 1 ball after a failed jump at the start of the second game. Another chance went in the third game when he missed position on the 9 and was unable to execute his jump under shot-clock pressure. That awarded Pehlivanovic a 2-1 lead and the European Champion took the next two games for a 4-1, 4-1 win to move to the last 32.
Austria’s Mario He, a US Pro Billiard Series winner at the FargoRate Ohio Open last fall, is also into the single elimination phase of the competition. He closed out day three on the TV table against South Africa’s Muhummad Daydat and scored a 4-1, 4-0 victory to progress from the winners’ side.
Ralf Souquet has also won through to the last 32 without defeat. The German defeated Turkey’s Melih Dagas 4-1, 4-1. “When you look at the score it seems like an easy one but with the short race and winner breaks, anything can happen. I missed an easy one at the beginning of the match but he didn’t capitalize, and in the second set when I was leading 3-0 I made an easy mistake on the 6 ball which could have changed the match. He had a great break right afterwards but luckily he couldn’t win the game,” said Souquet.
The Open division continues with three rounds on the losers’ side on Thursday, culminating in the qualification rounds for Friday’s single elimination stage of the tournament.
In the Women’s Division, Jasmin Ouschan had been sent to the losers’ side after a shootout defeat to Hong Kong’s Ka Kai Wan and on Wednesday faced another shootout to remain in the tournament. Facing Poland’s Monika Zabek, the Austrian lost the first set but fought back for victory.
Ouschan said: “You always want to win in two sets but I have played so many shootouts lately that I guess I practice it well. In this match I felt more calm than yesterday and after losing the first set, which I really shouldn’t have because I was up 3-0, I just tried whatever was possible, was calm and made all the balls.”
Canada’s Brittany Bryant, who finished second at the Alfa Las Vegas Women’s Open in April, stayed alive on the losers-side with consecutive wins. She defeated Portugal’s Vania Franco at the Sudden Death stage of a shootout and followed it with her second shootout win of the day, against Anna Riegler. She now faces potentially three matches on Thursday to make it through to single elimination stage. Kelly Fisher will face Melanie Sussenguth of Germany in the Women’s Qualification round as she continues her quest to make it three in three on the Pro Billiard Series.