DOWN TO FINAL FOUR AT WORLD POOL CHAMPIONSHIP
Albin Ouschan will meet David Alcaide before Omar Al Shaheen faces Oliver Szolnoki in the semi-finals of the World Pool Championship after all four won their quarter-finals on Wednesday evening at Marshall Arena, Milton Keynes.
Ouschan came from 5-3 down to defeat Skyler Woodward 11-5 in the evening’s second televised quarter-final, after Alcaide had beaten Max Lechner 11-4 in his quarter-final. The two met in the Predator Championship League Pool final earlier this year, when Ouschan took home the title.
Woodward was 3-1 and then 5-3 up before a 2-ball rattled in the jaws to allow Ouschan a chance, and it was a chance he took. The Austrian settled at the table and made some great shots along the way; a great jumped 8 helped get Ouschan level and an incredible 1/9 carom took him 9-5 up before he closed out the match without Woodward scoring another rack.
“I didn’t feel that well at the beginning, I was maybe a bit stiff and cold and had to get used to the TV table again because it is a little bit different to the outside table,” said Ouschan. “After the match, I can think that the 8-ball jump shot gave me a great confidence boost.
“I played well in the end but it could have gone the other way that he runs away with the score, but I am glad he didn’t and I am happy to be in the semis. I am playing David, he played a great tournament, so I hope it will be a good match and I will expect that and try my best. I saw his match against Max Lechner and he played a great match, so I will have to try my best.”
Alcaide was 5-0 before Lechner got on the board in their semi final. It was a strong tactical game from the Spaniard, who is into his fourth World semi-final having previously made the last four in the World 8-Ball and twice at the World 10-Ball.
The two-time World Pool Masters champion reached the hill in fortunate circumstances, taking a 10-3 lead after Lechner dropped his chalk onto the 3 ball. The Austrian pulled another rack back but at 10-4 Alcaide returned to the table to wrap up a victory which sees him into the semis.
The second semi-final will see Szolnoki take on Al Shaheen. Szolnoki, the 24-year-old from Hungary, had to sweat out a strong fightback from Francisco Sanchez-Ruiz as the Spaniard recovered from 9-3 down to cut the deficit to 10-9 before the Hungarian finally sealed his place in the last four.
Al Shaheen and Tomasz Kaplan shared the first four racks of their match before the Kuwaiti pulled ahead to 4-2. Kaplan took the next two to return the scores level but Al Shaheen then built up a head of steam to lead at 6-4 and 7-5. Kaplan cut the deficit to one at 7-6 but didn’t win another rack as Shaheen confidently closed the match 11-6.
The semi-finals begin at 12pm on Thursday, before the race-to-13 final from 6pm, which will see the 2021 World Champion crowned in front of returning fans at Marshall Arena, Milton Keynes.
For all the latest news and announcements follow Matchroom Pool on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram