H.H. Emir Cup 2022
Finn crowned Emir Cup champion
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8th July, Doha: Step 1 Final winner, Tomas Kayhko of Finland was crowned the H.H. Emir Cup 2022 champion after defeating challenger, Amhed Almahri of UAE, 410-355 in the two-game Step 6 championship final.

The two-hander Finn, who loves fresh lanes, got off to a cracking start in the opening game of the Step 6 Final with five strikes-in-a-row to open up a big gap as his opponent, Almahri had two open frames and only a single strike in the fourth frame.

Kayhko found the lanes a bit tricky but managed to make spares in his next four frames while the Emirati also had problems rolling strikes. Kayhko took first game, 223-187 for a 36 pins advantage.

The 2021 IBF World Championships Singles silver medallist had a split in the first frame of the second game but again Almahri was just unable to make any headway. An opened frame in the sixth drew the game level allowing the Finn to maintain his 36 pins lead.

Debutant, Tomas Kayhko of Finland with his trophy and prize money

Kayhko held on to end the second game with 187 and despite a late charge by Almahri, he went down with 183 to settle for the first runner-up position. The champion pocketed the top prize of USD20,000 while Almahri took home USD12,000.

"I only found out about the Emir Cup six days while I was competing at the Brunswick Euro Challenge in Munich," said the 25-year-old champion. "Then I realised that not many bowlers had registered for the tournament so I thought I'll give it a shot but must finish at least in the top 4 to break even.

I'm glad I made the right decision to come although I had to go through all the trouble flying to Doha with all the Covid-19 restrictions."

The champion had earlier defeated Adel Al Bariqi of Saudi Arabia, 451-387 in Step 4 semi-final to make the title match. Almahri eliminated Squad D winner, Jassim Al-Muraikhi, 426-408 to face Kayhko. The Finn easily defeated another Qatari, Mansour Alhajri, 542-391 in Step 3 final to advance to Step 4.

Top qualifier and winner of Squad A, Yousef Aljabir of Qatar and Squad C winner, Annop Arromsaranon of Thailand won USD6,000 each as joint-third finishers.

Top 4 winners (L to R), Almahri, Kayhko, Arromsaranon and Al-Jabir

Mubarak Al-Muraikhi, two-time champion of Emir Cup (2010 and 2007) and general manager of Qatar Bowling Federation presented the prizes and trophy to the winners along with tournament director Salem Al-Marzooqi.

Photos by Terence Yaw in Doha, Qatar.

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