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H.H. Emir Cup 2008 Page 1 | 2
Qatari ends drought to bag cup

19th March, Doha: Bandar Al-Shafi of Qatar, ended a two year drought to bag the Masters title of the H.H. Emir Cup 2008 defeating topseed, Naif Oqab of UAE, 409-366 over two games in the stepladder title match on Wednesday.

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Bandar Al-Shafi, whose last success was winning the gold medal in the 3rd West Asian Games in 2005, edged topseed, Naif Oqab of UAE, 195-191 in a closely fought first match. The Qatari then went on to cruise to a comfortable victory over his challenger, 214-175 to win the cup, 409-366.

The champion reached the final after he ousted Kuwait's Khalid Al-Dubyyan, 481-479 in another nail-bitting semifinal while the runner-up, Naif disposed off fellow-countrymen, Shaker Al-Hassan, 473-447 in the other semifinal match to set up the tie with Bandar.

Bandar had earlier, outclassed seventh-seed, Prince Mohd Sultan of Saudi Arabia, 458-396 in the quarterfinals. Meanwhile, Naif Oqab also reached the semifinals by knocking out eighth-seed, Mansoor Al-Awamy of Qatar, 474-411 in the quarterfinals.

Bandar Al-Shafi
Bandar Al-Shafi winning his first title this year

In yesterday's Stage 2 finals, Naif Oqab topped the 8-game rolloff, 4 games on short oil and 4 games on long oil conditions with 1823 to progress into the knockout stage with Bandar Al-Shafi in second totaling 1798.

Patrick Healey of USA, who finished third with 1787, was eliminated by Shaker Al-Hassan in the quarterfinals while Andrew Frawley, who finished 4th with 1757 in Stage 2, was beaten by Khalid Al-Dubyyan also in the quarterfinals.

The champion picked up Qatar Riyal 75,000 (US$20,000) for winning this year's title with Naif Oqab settling for Qatar Riyal 40,000 (US$10,000). Shaker Al-Hassan won Qatar Riyal 20,000 (US$5,000) for finishing third after he defeated Khalid Al-Dubyyan in the 3rd and 4th position playoffs.

Photos by Terence Yaw.

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