16th December, Seberang Prai: 2019 Kota Kinabalu Open champion, Muhammad Hariz Adlan of MMBC, Penang took over the lead of the Mixed Open Masters qualifying leaderboard at the 47th Penang Pesta International Bowling Championships to earn a bye for Round 2 finals.
2017 Thailand Open champion and ex-Malaysian national kegler, Zulmazran Zulkifli had topped the local pool with 1520 but has been pipped by the 16-year-old Hariz by one pin. The Penangnite rolled 269, 268 and 244 for a three-game series of 781.
He then added another impressive 268, 269 and 203 for a 740 series to go top of the leaderboard and earned the bye. Zulmazran settled for second with 1520 while national bowler, Syafiq Ridhwan slipped down to third with 1454.
2017 Junior All-Stars champion, Shahrukh Amin Zulkifli missed the top bracket cut by 40 pins taking up fourth position with 1414. Wan Muhammad Naqib rounded out the top five with 1392 ahead of last week's Storm U22 Junior All-Stars first runner-up, Muhammad Syazirol in sixth with 1391.
2017 Penang Pesta second runner-up and 2018 AMF World Cup champion, Sam Cooley of Australia remained in pole position of the overseas pool with 1542 on attempts of 801 and 741. Ulju City's Hwang Dong Wook of Korea made the top bracket after taking up second with 1458.
Ulsan City Hall's Kim Do Hee of Korea slipped down to third with 1452. Jeon-Nam Bowling's Park Dae Hee missed the top bracket by 24 pins to take up fourth position with 1428 while 2015 World Men's Championships Masters gold medallist, Kang Hee Won of Ulju City made up the top five with 1417.
Indonesia's Oscar headed the mixed pool (local and overseas) with 1371 and the cut on the final day of qualifying before ending late tonight went to Isaac Yap of Singapore with 1247. Last year's cut was 1302.
The top 3 qualifiers in the local pool and top 3 qualifiers in the overseas pool will earn a bye and advance to Round 2 finals. Local pool qualifiers positioned 3 to 13, overseas pool qualifiers positioned 3 to 13 together with qualifiers positioned 1 to 25 in the mixed pool will contest the 10-game Round 1 finals tomorrow.
The top 18 with the highest pinfalls at the end of Round 1 finals will be joined by the six seeded qualifiers for another 10 games in Round 2 on December 18. The top 3 finishers will then proceed to the Stepladder shootout finals to determine the champion.
Photos by Terence Yaw in Seberang Prai, Malaysia.