2023 Macao China International Open
Topseeds capture first international title
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25th June, Macau: Topseeds James Lui of Hong Kong and Kang Hye Rim of KNSU, Korea captured their first international Men's Open and Women's Open Masters titles at the concluding 2023 Macao-China International Open on Sunday.

Lui, who topped the earlier 8-games Round 2 finals with 1812 to advance to the stepladder finals as topseed, needed only one match to beat challenger and second-seed, Jang Tae Joon, 212-202 to win the Men's crown.

The 26-year-old Hong Kong national team member knocked down seven strikes-in-a-row from frame four to clinch the coveted title. Jang, who had earlier ousted Darren Ong of Singapore and 2023 Singapore Open first runner-up, Yannaphon Larpapharat of Thailand, 237-222-210 to face Lui.

Sixth-seed, Larpapharat defeated fourth-seed, 2023 Hong Kong Open champion, Tun Hakim of Malaysia and fifth-seed, Wu Siu Hong, 211-203-203 in the first stepladder finals to advance to the next match.

Top 3 winners, Kang Tae Joon, James Lui and Darren Ong

Lui pocketed the top prize of MOP$70,000 (approx. US$8,900) as champion leaving Jang with MOP$30,000 as first runner-up. Ong, who ended up as third, went home with MOP$15,000 as second runner-up. Yannaphon, Hakim and Wu earned MOP$6,000, MOP$5,000 and MOP$4,000 respectively.

Meanwhile, Kang Hye Rim, who won the Women's Graded Masters title last night, denied Japan's Yuri Sato of Japan the victory after the 22-year-old dispatched Sato, 190-168 in the final match to capture the Women's crown.

Sato dispatched two Macau national bowlers, fourth-seed Lou Si Hang and fifth-seed, Veronica de Souza, 195-162-155 to advance to the second match. The Japanese also defeated two Koreans, second-seed Oh Hyun Ji and Shin Hye Bin, 216-109-208 to face Kang in the title match.

But Sato could not repeat the form she showed in the earlier matches and lost to the topseed. Kang won MOP$40,000 as champion while Sato settled for MOP$18,000 as first runner-up and Shin took home MOP$10,000.

Oh pocketed MOP$4,000, Lou MOP$3,000 and de Souza MOP$2,000 respectively as fourth, fifth and sixth place finisher. Kang topped the earlier 8-games Round 2 finals with 1677, followed by Oh and Sin with 1649 and 1606.

Shin Hye Bin, Kang Hye Rim and Yuri Sato with their trophies

The trophies and prizes were presented at the victory banquet hosted by Macau-China Bowling Association attended by government dignitaries, sponsors, team officials and athletes. More than 250 bowlers from Asia participated at the championships.

Photos by Terence Yaw in Macau, China.

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