14th July, Hong Kong: Ex-international, Wicky Yeung of Hong Kong shot the tournament's first 300 en-route to taking an early lead in the Men's Open Masters local pool qualifying standings at the 45th Hong Kong International Open underway at SCAA Bowling Centre.
Yeung started off with 210 in his opening game before reeling in 12 consecutive strikes for the first perfect game of the tournament. He ended his first attempt with 247 for a three-game series of 757. Yeung then added a second moderate three-game series of 600 to lead the standings with 1357.
But another ex-international youth, Leo Tse of Hong Kong, who won the Bowling Club Challenge Cup yesterday as member of KMCT with Rickle Kam and Michael Tsang, fired 744 and 681 to quickly take over the lead with 1425. 2017 World Championships Trios gold medallist, Eric Tseng amassed a six-game total of 1423 to move into second spot.
The top three local qualifiers with the highest qualifying pinfalls would earn a bye and automatically advance to Stage 2 Masters finals while qualifiers positioned 4 to 12 together with the three local seeded qualifiers and the defending champion, Wu Siu Hong of Hong Kong will have to contest Stage 1 Masters finals.
Singapore's Timothy Tham set the pace with 1347 to lead the overseas pool followed by Zoe Dias Ma of Macau in second with 1288. 2014 Hong Kong Open champion, Hussain Al Suwaidi of UAE is placed third despite only registering one attempt of 649.
The top three overseas qualifiers with the highest qualifying pinfalls will also automatically advance to Stage 2 Masters finals. Qualifiers position 1 to 10 in the mixed pool will join the local and overseas qualifiers for Stage 1 Masters finals.
Qverseas bowlers from Australia, China, Guam, Indonesia, Kuwait, Malaysia, Philippines, Qatar, Thailand and Chinese Taipei have confirmed their participation and are expected to arrive mostly on July 15.
In the Women's division, Chloe Lee topped the local pool with a moderate 1180 ahead of ex-international, Joey Yip in second with 1174. Sammy Koa finished third with 1077. Like the men, the top three local qualifiers with the highest qualifying pinfalls would earn a bye and automatically advance to Stage 2 Masters finals. Qualifiers positioned 4 to 10 will contest Stage 1 Masters finals on July 19.
2015 ABF Tour Macau leg winner, Veronica De Souza of Macau was the only overseas women to have made two attempts to lead with 1247. The top three overseas qualifiers with the highest qualifying pinfalls will also automatically advance to Stage 2 Masters finals.
Qverseas qualifiers positioned 4 to 10 together with qualifiers position 1 to 9 in the mixed pool will join the local and overseas qualifiers for Stage 1 Masters finals. The top 15 women and top 18 men with the highest pinfalls after Stage 1 Masters finals will advance to Stage 2 joined by their respective seeded qualifiers for another 8 games on July 20.
The top 6 women and top 6 men with the highest pinfalls at the end of Stage 2 Masters finals will proceed to the Stepladder Shootout finals. The top 16 Asian women and top 16 Asian men will also qualify for the second leg of the 2019 ABF Tour Hong Kong scheduled for July 21. Qualifying will continue through to July 18.
Photos by Terence Yaw in Hong Kong.