15th June, Manila: Malaysians dominated the Men's Graded Masters final of the PBF 3rd Philippine International Open by sweeping the top five positions as Abner Loo took the title while Kaygien Itaralde of PBAP captured the Ladies' Graded Masters crown.
Mohammad Sufyan Ismat of Malaysia took the early lead with a superb 235 to lead compatriot, Abner Loo by one pin. Sufyan added another good game of 214 to stretch his lead to 33 pins. But Loo took over the running after rolling 236 in the third game as Sufyan slipped behind Loo.
The two Malaysians battled it out in the next three games trading the lead but Loo quickened his pace by reeling in 224, 223 and 233 from game 7 onwards to pull away from his nearest opponent. Sufyan faded off as another Malaysian, Mohammad Zuhayr moved into second spot.
By the tenth game, Loo had amassed a comfortable margin of 169 pins. A fourth Malaysian, Abdul Khadir Haziq fired several big games to leapfrog into second spot albeit 169 pins behind the leader.
Loo ended with 215 and 209 in his last two games to take a convincing victory with 2578 pinfalls. Abdul Khadir settled for second despite finishing with 238 and 223 for a total of 2446, 132 pins adrift. A fifth Malaysian, Ahmad Azraie clinched third position with 2312 while a sixth Malaysian, Iman Roslim took fourth position with 2302. Mohammad Zuhayr completed Malaysia's sweep of the top five positions with 2297.
Marc Custodio was the best non-Malaysian finishing in sixth position with 2269. Tsen Fan Yew of Malaysia and Mike Crisol of TBAM-Prima rounded out the top 8 with prize money in seventh and eighth positions.
In the Ladies' Graded division, Kaygien Itaralde of PBAP captured the crown with a total of 1864 over 10 games. Senior Ladies second runner-up, Linda Grabowska of Malaysia stormed home to snatch second position with 1809.
Liza Vicente of TBAM-Prima finished third with 1808 while Natasya Rafie of Brunei, who had battled with Itaralde for the lead in the early stages, missed the podium 21 pins to end up in fourth position with 1787. Newcomer, Layla Al Janahi of Bahrain completed the top five with 1748.
Loo pocketed the top prize of 150,000 pesos as the Men's Graded Masters champion. Abdul Khadir took home 75,000 pesos and Ahmad Azraie earned 40,000 pesos.
Itaralde won 50,000 pesos as the Ladies' Graded Masters champion. Grabowska and Vicente took home 25,000 and 13,000 pesos respectively. The PBF 3rd Philippine International Open will end tomorrow with the Men's Open and Ladies' Open Round 2 finals followed by the Stepladder Shootout finals to determine the champions.
Photos by Terence Yaw in Manila, Philippines.
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