25th September, Bangkok: Two-time Collegiate All-American winner, Darren Tang of Las Vegas, Nev. took over the lead of the standings on the penultimate day of qualifying at the 2019 PBA-WBT World Bowling Tour Thailand on Wednesday.
Tang, whose best effort was a 726, 661 and 616 after three days of qualifying, was in 12th position with 2003. The 26-year-old 2014 Junior Team USA chalked up a stunning 773 at the 12:00hrs squad taking him up third on 2160.
Dominic Barrett of England, who snatched the lead late last night from Ryan Ciminelli of USA with 2180, looked unbeatable. But Tang added another fine 3-game series of 686 taking his 9-game tally to 2185 to beat the Brit by 5 pins and to take the top spot.
2014 champion, Osku Palermma of Finland fired two good attempts of 706 and 688 to add to his 763 effort yesterday, moving the two-hander into the top bracket in fourth position with 2157. PBA Hall of Famer, Chris Barnes of Double Oak, Texas also made the top bracket in fifth with 2122.
Overnight leader, Kim Bolleby of Thailand hung on to sixth position with 2072. Defending champion, Danielle McEwan of Stoney Point, N.Y., regained the seventh spot reserved for the top female qualifier with an improved 2017.
2017 champion, Yannaphon Larpapharat settled for the eighth position reserved for the top Thai not in the top 7 and the privilege to advance to Round 4 finals with 2041. His compatriot, Surasak Manuwong dropped out of the top bracket into ninth position to head the second bracket for Round 3 finals.
The cut for Round 3 finals in 24th position went to Indonesia's Ryan Lalisang with 2002 while Singapore's Jazreel Tan headed the third bracket in 25th position with 1995. Because only one female has made the top 32, positions 34 to 37 were subsquently awarded to Liz Johnson (USA-1984), Alexis Sy (PHI-1959), Nur Syazwani Sahar (MAS-1944) and Liza Del Rosario (PHI-1908).
Positions 38 and 39 reserved for the top 2 Thai qualifiers not in the top 37 went to 2018 PBA-WBT Busan Cup winner, Annop Arromsaranon with 1980 and 2019 Kaohsiung Open Youth champion, Lapasdanai Chusaeng with 1948. The current cut therefore in 33rd went to Arnar David Jonsson of Iceland with 1985, averaging 220.56.
There were several big scorers in today's qualifying rounds. Indonesia's Billy Muhammad Islam shot 731 to qualify. Wes Malott downed 748 while Barnes posted 740, all at the 12:00hrs squad. 2017 World Championships Masters Gold medallist, Mitch Hupe of Canada added 761 while 2016 champion, Jesper Svensson of Sweden and ex-Malaysian international, Zulmazran Zulkifli registered 735 and 710 respectively. With three more squads remaining for today at press time and nine squads tomorrow, the cut could well reach the 2010 to 2020 mark.
Photos by Terence Yaw in Bangkok.