Amazing comeback from the young Dutch
Sarajevo, Bosnia & Hercegovina: In the final match of the pupils’s 9-ball competition, Jan van Lierop (NED) won the Gold Medal with a 7:5 victory over Raphael Wahl (GER). Wahl was probably the player in this final that most people saw as the favorite. He was last year’s straight pool champion and he has also won a Bronze Medal in the 9-ball last year. Van Lierop was still an unknown quantity. The match started as expected. Wahl took the first two racks. Then, van Lierop was about to win the 3rd rack but he scratched when he pocketed the 9-ball. That gave Wahl a comfortable 3:0 lead. But instead of suffering from that mishap, van Lierop even seemed to come out stronger from it. He took the next five consecutive racks and suddenly lead the match with 5:3. That roll really turned the tide in that match. Wahl started to struggle and committed unnecessary mistakes. He got a rack back from van Lierop at 4:5 but then he missed again and allowed van Lierop to take a 6:4 lead. In rack number eleven, van Lierop already had the chance to win his first title but he came up with a bad shot selection when he lined up for a combination shot 6-ball on the 8-ball. He missed that shot and again, Wahl narrowed the gap between them to one point only, trailing 5:6. The 12th rack brought the decision. Van Lierop turned out to play the better safety shots and consequently win the rack, taking the title match with 7:5.
In the girl’s division, Kateryna Polovinchuk (UKR) made short work with her opponent Sabrina Hammer (GER), defeating her 6:3. It almost looked like Hammer would receive a whitewash when she was trailing 0:5 to Polovinchuk. But then the Ukrainian was not able to close the book on the match. Hammer came back and took three racks before Polovinchuk was able to take the final rack she needed for the title in the girl’s division, winning 6:3.
In the junior’s division, Andrey Seroshtan (RUS) won the Gold Medal over Daniel Schneider (SUI) with 8:2. Schneider could not continue to perform at the same level as in the semi-final against Muratovic. Seroshtan appeared to be more focussed and took a start-to-finish victory home to Russia.
The event will continue with the quarter-finals in the team divisions.
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The event is hosted by the European Governing Body for Pool, the European Pocket Billiard Federation (EPBF) and organized by International Billiard Promotion (IBP). For further information and reference please go to the federation website www.billiardapps.com or contact our press office.