24th October, Kuwait: 2014 Asian Games Singles silver medallist, Du Jianchao and 2016 AMF World Cup champion, Wang Hongbo of China surprised a strong field to lead the Men's Doubles opening squad of the 25th Asian Tenpin Bowling Championships on Thursday.
2015 Trios silver medallist, Kim Junyung and 2014 World Men's Championships Masters gold medallist, Kang Heewon of Korea's first pair got off the mark with a sizzling 519 to lead their compatriots and second Korean pair, Park Geonha and Lee Ikkyu by 2 pins.
Saudi Arabia's first pair of Mohammed Alsaud and Adel Albarqi looked promising after taking up third spot with 499. Malaysia's second paring of Syafiq Ridhwan and 2018 World Men's Championships Doubles gold medallist, Tun Hakim, added a second game of 510 to their 477 opener to take over the lead.
Korea 1 slipped down to second after managing 464. Saleh Salem and Jasem Alsaqer of host nation, Kuwait rolled a big game of 501 to add to their slow starting game of 460 to take up third position while others were off the pace of the leading pack.
Malaysia kept up their strong momentum with another superb 501 in the third game to extend their lead over Korea to 50 pins at the halfway mark. Korea did not improve their strides but remain in second so did the Kuwaiti pair remaining in third position.
Ridhwan and Hakim continued to lead despite managing only 456 in the fourth game, 31 pins ahead of Kuwait moving ahead of the Koreans, who slipped down to third. China's Du and Wang fired a splendid 501 to leapfrog into fourth, just four pins further away.
With Malaysia stumbling to a lowly 415 in the fifth game and Kuwait posting only 435, China added 487 to becomd the new leader. Korea bounced back with 465 to regain second position while Malaysia and Kuwait slipped down to third and fourth.
The Chinese pair ended the squad in fine style reeling in a sizzling 511 to seal top spot with 2901. Korea 1 claimed second position with 2842, 59 pins adrift. Malaysia recovered slightly to clinch third spot with 2838.
Kuwait missed the top three spots with 2825 despite ending strong with 481 while Egypt's Amr Eisam and Ayman Hashim completed the top 5 with 2792. The Men's Doubles second squad will take to the lanes for their preliminaries after lane maintenance.
The top three pairs with the highest pinfalls from the combined squads will be declared the winners. Competition will shift to the Trios event tomorrow with the women and men playing their first block of 3 games divided into two squads.
Photos by Terence Yaw in Kuwait.