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Corteza Cuts Through Competition in Japan Open
Nov 22, 2006, 9:51 AM

The Filipino dominance continues as Lee Van Corteza, of Mintal, Davao City, followed the shadow of reigning world 9-ball champion Ronato Alcano after winning the 39th All-Japan Championships held on Nov. 19 at Hotel New Archaic in Hyogo, Japan.

Corteza crushed former WPC runner-up Pei-Wei Chang of Chinese Taipei, 11-3, in the final to win the championship for the first time since he began competing in the event way back in 1999. Corteza also pocketed the top purse equivalent to $1 million Philippine pesos.

The fierce international field included 2005 World Pool champion Wu Chia-Ching of Chinese Taipei, 2006 World Pool Championship runner-up Ralf Souquet of Germany, Tan Tiong Boon of Singapore, Patrick Ooi of Malaysia and Ramil Gallego of the Philippines.

Corteza beat Mika Immonen of Finland, 9-5, and Japanese bets T. Tobo, 9-0, and A. Shiraiwa, 9-2, in earlier rounds.

Corteza, a Southeast Asian Games (SEA) Games gold medalist in 1999, 2001, 2003 and 2005, is expecting a child, to be named after Lee Vann, sometime between January and February. Her wife Gelia, is a six-month-pregnant to their baby boy.