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ABF Tour - Tournament of Champions | Photo Album |
Fabulous Double for Malaysia

15th January, Jakarta: Malaysia got off to a great start of 2007 with a fabulous double when Alex Liew captured the Men's title of the ABF Tour Tournament of Champions while Wendy Chai won the Women's crown for the second time at Jaya Ancol Bowling Centre on Monday evening.

ABF Tour - TOC logo

As the newly-crowned Milo Junior All Stars champion, Belmonte struggled to find his lines, Liew took an early lead with a double strike in the third and fourth frames. Two costly mistakes by the Aussie in frames five and seven gave the confidence to Liew to strikeout in the ninth and tenth frames to cruise to an easy victory, 216-165.

The champion had earlier knocked out Qatar's Abdulla Al-Qattan, 200-183 in the second semifinal match to make the finals while Belmonte edged TOC debutant, Mohd Noer Said of Malaysia to prevent an all-Malaysian finals, 188-171 in the first semifinal match.

"I was expecting a tough match ahead of the final against Jason (Belmonte) but when he started to struggle in the difficult lane conditions, I was a bit

Alex Liew
Alex Liew winning the TOC title for the first time

more relax," said the champion, Alex Liew. "From then onwards I was very relaxed and all I had to do was to make sure I didn't make any mistakes.

"I have been to six grand finals and the nearest I got was making the semifinals. Winning the title for the first time is certainly a great way to start the 2007 season."

Liew also ousted Filipino, Chester King, 232-172 in the quarterfinals before being matched up with the Qatari and top-seed, Belmonte eliminated Kuwait's Fadhel Al-Mousawi, 192-176 in the quarterfinals.

In the women's division, Wendy Chai gave Malaysia a fabulous double by winning the women's crown for the second time. Chai took the same title in 2005 in the first ABF Tour TOC also held at Jaya Ancol Bowling Centre.

At the start of the women's finals, it had appeared to be a closely fought match but when Chai brought home six strikes from frame 4 onwards, the champion was in full control while her challenge, Kim Eun Jung of Korea was playing catchup. Chai took the match convincingly 248-210 to claim the women's crown and the top prize of US$10,000 with the Korean settling for US$5,000.

"Winning a title at the start of the year is great but it wasn't easy especially with an opponent like Kim Eun Jung," said the delighted champion, Wendy

Wendy Chai
Second TOC title for Wendy Chai

Chai. "Fortunately, I used two bowling balls during the finals when the conditions of the left and right lanes were different.

"I'm extremely happy to win the title for the second time and also glad for my teammate, Alex Liew for giving Malaysia a grand double. I like to dedicate this win to my coach, Holloway, parents and Ben Heng, who had helped me during the finals.

The champion had knocked out top-seed, Angkana Netvriseth of Thailand, 224-187 in the first women's semifinal match before going on to claim the title while Kim edged local favourite, Putty Armein of Indonesia, 241-231 in the other semifinal match.

The finals today saw yet another stella year for Asian Bowling Federation in which eight legs were held which began in February in Doha, Qatar and ending with the last leg in September in Hong Kong. The top 16 men and top 16 women made the TOC via ranking points earned from all the legs contested. Visit www.abftour.com for LIVE scores.

Photos by Terence Yaw.

Aussie, Thai turns the table

14th January, Jakarta: Jason Belmonte of Australia and Angkana Netvriseth of Thailand turned the tables on overnight leaders, Chester King and Putty Armein to end the qualifying round of the ABF Tour Tournament of Champions by topping both the Men and Women's division.

ABF Tour - TOC logo

The Aussie was fifth in the first block of 8 games played on Saturday and trailed overnight leader, Chester King of the Philippines by 131 pins. The 23-year-old Belmonte won four straight matches to narrow the gap to just 19 pins by the 13th game behind new leader, Abdulla Al-Qattan of Qatar.

A superb 290 in the penultimate match saw the Aussie surge into the lead and 62 pins ahead of the Qatari and despite just posting a 206 in his final game, it was enough to top the field with a 15-game total of 3345.

"I started poorly on the first day as this is my first-ever visit to this bowling centre and Indonesia," said the top-seed, Jason Belmonte. "I was merely trying to find my feet as the approach was quite slippery but once I settled down, I was able to make good shots. I used the Columbia Wrath for the first time and it helped me a lot towards the end especially when the lanes were getting drier."

Jason Belmonte
Jason Belmonte maing the top 8 as top-seed

Al-Qattan settled for second with 3301 ahead of Filipino, Chester King in third with a total of 3299. Tour TOC debutant, Mohd Noer Said was the best Malaysian finisher in fourth on 3237 followed by TOC top qualifier and teammate, Zulmazran Zulkifli in fifth spot with 3200.

Two-time Indonesia Open champion, Alex Liew of Malaysia also made the knockout stage in sixth with 3177 while the last two spots went to Hong Kong's Wu Siu Hong and Kuwait's Fadhel Al-Mousawi in seventh and eighth positions respectively.

Thailand's Angkana Netvriseth surprised the strong field by topping the women's division by a comfortable margin of 91 pins on her 15-game total of 3377. The 17-year-old student from Bangkok who trailed Indonesia's Putty Armein in the first block, took over the lead after the 3 games were played in today's second block.

Korea's Kim Eun Jung, who finished third overnight, improved to take up second with a total of 3286 while overnight leader and Doha Asian Games silver medalist, Putty Armein dropped to third with 3201.

"My best performance in the tour was finishing second in the Hong Kong leg this year so I'm thrilled to have made the top 8," said the 17-year-old Angkana Netvriseth of Thailand. "And it was a pleasant surprise to finish top-

Angkana Netvriseth
Angkana Netvriseth of Thailand topping the women's division

seed especially bowling amongst the top bowlers in Asia. Although I intend to make it all the way to the finals, I will take one game at a time."

Two-time Milo Junior All Stars champion, Siti Safiyah Amirah displayed superb consistency to clinch fourth spot with 3108 ahead of her more experienced teammate and TOC top women qualifier, Shalin Zulkifli, who finished fifth with 3100.

Filipina, Liza Clutario made the cut finishing sixth with 3086 while 2004 TOC champion, Wendy Chai joined her fellow Malaysians for the kncokout stage in seventh on a score of 3046. The final spot went to Kang Hyun Jin of Korea who finished eighth with 3016.

The top 8 men and top 8 women will move into the one-game knockout quarterfinal stage and the winners of the first matches will proceed to the semifinals to determine the finalists and this year's TOC champions. Visit www.abftour.com for LIVE scores.

Photos by Terence Yaw.

Indonesian, Filipino hangs on to lead

13th January, Jakarta: Current Asian Ranked No. 1, Putty Armein of Indonesia and Chester King of the Philippines hung on to lead the Women's and Men's first block qualifying round of the ABF Tour - Tournament of Champions underway at Jaya Ancol Bowling Centre Saturday evening.

ABF Tour - TOC logo

The 25-year-old top Indonesia women set an early pace only to see her lead overtaken by 2005 Vietnam Open champion and 2003 World Championship Masters bronze medalist, Kim Eun Jung of Korea. Kim kept a steady pace to continue her lead until Armein put in her challenge from game 5 onwards.

With lines of 232, 266, 227 and 202 in the last four games, the leader was able to keep the lead going into tomorrow's second block with total of 1814 pinfalls. Armein won seven of the eight games first block to finish ahead of Thailand's Angkana Netvriseth who finished strongly to snatch second spot from Kim with 1784.

"Competing in home is obviously an advantage and this could have given me the confidence to do well," said the leader, Putty Armein. "I hope I can keep my momentum into the second block tomorrow and make the knockout stage.

Putty Armein
Putty Armein hanging on to a slender lead

Kim settled for third with 1723 ahead of triple leg champion and Doha Asian Games gold medalist, Shalin Zulkifli in fourth position on 1665. 2004 TOC champion, Wendy Chai did well to take up fifth spot with 1647 while Filipina, Liza Clutario (1639), Korea's Kang Hyun Jin (1600) and two-time Milo International Junior champion, Siti Safiyah Amirah eighth with 1595.

In the men's division, Chester King of the Philippines was a class above the field after cruising to the lead with 1858 and winning all the eighth match to finish 73 pins ahead of pace-setter and this year's tour double leg champion, Mubarak Al-Muraikhi of Qatar in second with 1785.

Mubarak's fellow compatriot, Abdulla Al-Qattan stormed home in his final three-game series to snatch third spot with 1751 from top qualifier Zumazran Zulkifli of Malaysia, who settled for fourth spot with 1729. Zulmazran, who was awarded the overall best performer in this season's tour, could only manage a 171 in his final match to drop out of the top 3.

"I guess I'm fortunate that we had to come to Jakarta two days earlier than most competitors due to flight availability which gave me and my teammates extra days to practice," said the 30-year-old King. "So when we started the first block, I knew where to line up my shots to sore well.

Chester King
Chester King topping the first block by a comfortable margin

Newly-crowned Milo International Junior All Stars champion, Jason Belmonte of Australia also made up ground in his last four matches to finish amongst the top 5 with 1727. Mohd Noer Said of Malaysia (1711), Fadhel Al-Mousawi of Kuwait (1703) and twice Indonesia Open champion, Alex Liew of Malaysia (1701) rouded up the top 8 from sixth to eighth positions respectively.

The 16 women and 16 men will continue their second block of 7 games Sunday afternoon commencing at 3.00pm local Jakarta time. The top 8 in both divisions will make the cut for the knockout stage on Monday.

ABF Tour TOC is the grand slam finals for this year's tour. The ABF Tour 2006 comprises 8 Legs and a Grand Final. Top 16 men and 16 women bowlers from the preceding International Open Masters Event (Open Grade) will be qualified and competed in a one-game match play knock-out competition for the individual men's and women's titles. For further information and details please contact ABF Tour Committee Marketing and Event Management Division at Tel: (852) 2810 5191; Fax: (852) 28105192; Mr. Ritchie Lai (Mobile: (852) 93598669; email: ritchie.lai@tndgroup.com).

Photos by Terence Yaw.

Detailed Scores
Men's Rnd 1 Blk 1
Men's Rnd 1 Blk 2
Women's Rnd 1 Blk 1
Women's Rnd 1 Blk 2
Quarterfinals Matches
Semifinals Matches
   - Men Semi M1
   - Men Semi M2
   - Women Semi M1
   - Women Semi M2
Finals Matches
   - Men Final
   - Women Final
Finals Results
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