by Mason King Aug 31, 2006, 12:49 PM EST
The World Open 8-Ball Championship has finished its second day and round one is complete. A total of 120 players out of the original 200 will return for Tuesday’s matches, and only half of that number will make it to Wednesday’s rounds.
The biggest story of the first round was the elimination of IPT North American Open winner Thorsten Hohmann. The chiseled German couldn't muscle any balls in on the break, losing in the first-round to Warren Kiamco, 8-3, and Loree Jon Jones, 8-4. He got one win over Jim Raney, 8-2, but in his last match against Steve Moore, fighting over the final spot, Moore prevailed, 8-4.
The ever-rational Hohmann explained, "I could not make a ball on the break, I missed a few shots again. He played great. I deserved to lose, he deserved to win. There are good and bad tournaments. I won the last one and got knocked out in the first round here—of course I’m disappointed, though.”
Disqualifications and infractions abounded in round one. The second day of play at the World Open 8-Ball Championship kicked off with controversy, as Sweden's Tom Storm was disqualified for using a cue with a phenolic tip. Storm was playing Roland Acosta when his equipment came to the attention of the officials. Despite Storm's pleas and arguments, tournament director Deno Andrews disqualified him from the tournament.
Afterward, Andrews firmly stated, “It was very clearly laid out at the players' meeting that if you use a phenolic tip you’re disqualified, so unfortunately in the first round we had to disqualify him and he forfeits his prize money.”
Later on, Hall of Fame member “Champagne” Eddie Kelly was also disqualified for using a phenolic tip. “I have no idea what ‘phenolic’ is,” claimed Kelly, who said that he was told it was leather when he bought it. Tour Founder Kevin Trudeau ruled it his responsibility to know.
The dress code also provided controversy. Earl Strickland was fined $1,000 for wearing a pullover, claiming that he had seen other players sporting the casual garment. "It’s my own fault for following the other players ‘cause they are idiots when it comes to dressing—they are going to try to abuse the dress code — I knew that — and it’s the same thing. I followed with them and it’s cost me a thousand dollars. That kinda derailed me a little bit."
Strickland still managed to go undefeated in his group, which included disqualified Storm, Acosta, Pete Fusco, and Austrian phenom Jasmin Ouschan. Strickland and Ouschan were both undefeated when they met in the final round Monday evening, easily the most anticipated match of the day.
Strickland was surly as he trailed for most of the match, but came away the 8-6 winner. “No woman should ever be able to beat me playing pool. Apples and oranges, that’s what you’re comparing here. If you make the tables tight and have longer matches, the women will never have a chance," he said, prior to the match.
All 13 of the players from the Philippines: Dennis Orcollo, Alex Pagulayan, Jose Parica, Efren Reyes, Marlon Manalo, Rodolfo Luat, Antonio Lining, Edwin Montal, Ronato Alcano, Francisco Bustamante, Ramil Gallego, Warren Kiamco, Santos Sambajon Jr. advanced to round two.
Of the 16 women competing in the event, 10 were eliminated after the first round. Ouschan, Allison Fisher, Kelly Fisher, Karen Corr, Sarah Ellerby, Loree Jon Jones all made it to Tuesday's matches.
Check out live coverage of round two of the IPT World Open at www.internationalpooltour.com