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World Cup in Vietnam with extra dimension


Published by frits bakker

© AfreecaTv App
Frédéric Caudron won his first match this morning after his come-back to UMB

HO CHI MINH - The 2nd World Cup of the year that started in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam, this Monday, is facing a notable, new meeting of old acquaintances in the world's top competition. Frédéric Caudron returned this morning  to the World Cups circuit after a clash with the PBA. The Belgian should meet renowned top players like Jaspers, Tran, Cho, Blomdahl, Zanetti and Merckx again for the first time in about three years. According to the UMB regulations, he has to go through a route of preliminary rounds to make it to the main draw with 32 players. The same for Birol Uymaz, the Turkish players who returned from the PBA.

Caudron this morning won his first match against Korean Dong Han Lee and won 30-17 in 21. Uymaz was the better of Dutch Mark van Peer 30-7 in 21. Both players continue later today.

Dutchman Dick Jaspers leads the rankings in Ho Chi Minh with a total of 374 ranking points. Caudron and Uymaz have to start on 0 points after their suspension due to the PBA switch and are ranked in positions starting from 925. But a nice detail is that Caudron would rise to position 40 if he won his first World Cup.

The World Cup, in the fast-growing billiards mecca where the world individual champion (Phuong Vinh Bao) and the world team champion (Bao and Tran) have their homeland, is played at the Nguyen Du Stadium in Ho Chi Minh city and broadcast live by AfreecaTV. UMB president Farouk Barki is the UMB in charge, Ugur Oktorvaci the sports director.

Caudron's come-back with many old fellows from the world top gives an extra dimension to this World Cup in Ho Chi Minh, which was won last year by Torbjörn Blomdahl, who beat Myung Woo Cho in the final. Three players competing in Ho Chi Minh returned before: Robinson Morales, Glenn Hofman and Jean Paul de Bruijn. They have since climbed to positions 22, 27 and 36 of the rankings with 107 points for Morales, 84 for Hofman and 71 for De Bruijn.

For one of the departures to the PBA this year, this is his last World Cup. The huge Turkish talent Burak Hashas, among others European under-25 champion a fortnight ago and 42nd in the world rankings, is saying goodbye to the UMB and will start in the PBA tour this summer. 

Quyet Chien Tran won this year's 1st World Cup in Bogota, Colombia. The 14 seeded players according to the UMB Events Ranking are Dick Jaspers, Quyet Chien Tran, Myung-Woo Cho, Torbjörn Blomdahl, Eddy Merckx, Jun-Tae Kim, Haeng-Jik Kim, Marco Zanetti, Sameh Sidhom, Tayfun Tasdemir, Martin Horn, Phuong Vinh, Myeong-Jong Cha and Jung Han Heo. Added to these are the three wildcards for Jérémy Bury (UMB) and Vietnamese Hong Chiem Thai and Thanh Luc Tran (organization).

The time difference with Western Europe is 5 hours, meaning Frédéric Caudron made his return this Monday at 2pm Vietnam time. That was at 9am in Western Europe.

Apart from Caudron and Uymaz, German Ali Ibraimov, the elder brother of Amir Ibraimov, will also start on the first day of play, Monday. On the second day, former world champion Ryuuji Umeda will be in action, as will Takeshima O, Emrullah Basegmez, Tatsuo Arai, Sergei Jimenez, Alessio D'Agata and Dimitrios Seleventas.

Day 3 starts with David Pennör, Ahmet Alp, Ja In Kang, Ronny Lindemann, TTT Nguyen, Van Ly Dao, Ji Hun Ahn, Turgay Orak, Arnim Kahofer, Kostas Kokkoris, Jose Miguel Soares and Pierre Soumagne. On the last qualifying day, Berkay Karakurt, Peter Ceulemans, Nikos Polychronopoulos, Robinson Morales, Ruben Legazpi, Gwendal Maréchal, Roland Forthomme, Glenn Hofman, Jeffrey Jorissen, Tolgahan Kiraz, Gökhan Salman, Burak Hashas, Sam van Etten and Jean Paul de Bruijn will have a shot at the main tournament.

On Friday, the eight groups of four players will be formed to meet on the eight match tables in the arena. Dick Jaspers plays Jérémy Bury in the first, interesting matches at 10.00 am Vietnamese time (5.00 in the morning Western Europe), Myung Woo Cho against Jung Han Heo, at 12.00 pm Eddy Merckx against world champion Phuong Vinh Bao, Jun Tae Kim against Martin Horn, Haeng Jik Kim against Tayfun Tasdemir and Marco Zanetti against Sameh Sidhom.

The knockouts with 8 are Saturday from 12.00 (7.00 West Europe), the quarter-finals at 17.00 and 19.30. On Sunday the semi-finals are at 13.30 and 16.00, the final at 19.30 (14.30 West Europe). For billiards fans who want to watch the matches live, the matches start at 6am European time on the first three days and last until 3pm in the afternoon and from 5am to 2pm on the following days.