27th September, Bangkok: 2018 Asian Games Masters champion, Rafiq Ismail of Malaysia ended the Round 3 Finals of the 2018 PBA-World Bowling Tour Thailand with a comfortable victory over JPBA's Shota Kawazoe in second and Kyle Troup of Taylorsville, N.C., third.
Round 2 winner and Team USA member, Chris Barnes got off the block with a brilliant 252 in his opening game to lead four-time JPBA Triple Crown winner, Kawazoe of Japan and two-handed Troup sharing second spot, 8 pins adrift.
2017 PBA Chameleon Championships winner and Team USA member, Liz Johnson of Palatine, Ill., rolled back-to-back 235s to move into the lead as Stuart Williams of England added a sizzling 269 to his 212 opening game to take up second.
Defending champion, Yannaphon Larpapharat of Thailand rolled a stunning 290 in the third game to add to his two earlier games of 213 and 235 to become the new leader. Troup downed 255 to move back into second spot followed by Williams in third.
Kawazoe kept close to the leading trio in fourth position while Marshall Kent of Yakima, Wash., rounded out the top 5. The Thai kept his lead despite managing only 216 in the fourth game. The Japanese pro took over second spot after another good game of 257.
Kent improved to fourth followed by Williams in fifth. Rafiq Ismail, who had a moderate start with 201, picked up his pace with 237 and 244 in his next two games but stumbled with 199 in the fourth. The 21-year-old then fired a sizzling 290 in the fifth game to move into the lead.
Troup also posted a big game of 269 to take over second spot as Kawazoe stalled with 197 and slipped down to third. Williams and Kent stayed behind in fourth and fifth. There was no stopping the left-handed Malaysian as he romped home with another superb game of 286 to win the round with 1457.
Kawazoe recovered with 251 to claim second spot with 1400 while Troup settled for third with 1381. Hong Kong's Wu Siu Hong stormed home to snatch fourth position with 1375 while Kent competed the top 5 with 1374.
Yannaphon, Johnson, Williams, Team USA member, Chris Via of Springfield, Ohio, and sixth perfect gamer, Greg Young of USA rounded out the top 10. Bill O'Neill of Longhorne, PA., finished 11th with 1275 while Osku Palermaa of Finland secured the last spot for the next round with 1274.
Round 2 winner, Barnes, who was in tenth position before the final game, ended with a disastrous 179 and failed to make the cut finishing in 14th position with 1267. Sithiphol Kunaksorn of Thailand also missed the cut by 2 pins finishing 13th.
The top 12 will be joined by qualifiers positioned 1 to 8 from the Round 1 qualifying standings for another 6 games in Round 4 finals tomorrow. The top 7 plus the top Thai finishers will proceed to the Stepladder TV Finals.
Photos by Terence Yaw in Bangkok, Thailand.