2017 World Bowling Championships
Singapore, Colombia advances as topseeds
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2nd December, Las Vegas: Singapore blitzed the lanes at South Point Bowling Plaza in the second block of Women's 5-player Team event to advance to the semi-finals of the 2017 World Bowling Championships as topseed while overnight leader, Colombia remained unbeaten to take top spot in the Men's division.

Singapore's Cherie Tan, Daphne Tan, Jazreel Tan, New Hui Fen and Shayna Ng, who were eighth in the first block and 123 pins adrift the leader, had a moderate start in the second block with 969 while Malaysia's Natsasha Roslan, Sin Li Jane, Syaidatul Afifah, Siti Saifyah and Shalin Zulkifli shot 1059 to extend their lead from 12 to 50 pins.

Colombia's Juliana Franco, Anggie Ramirez, Rocio Restrpo, Maria Rodriquez and Clara Guerrero remained in second. Team USA's Josie Barnes, Shannon O'Keefe, Stefanie Johnson, Danielle McEwan and Kelly Kulick stayed close in third with Korea fourth.

Singapore winning Squad A to advance to the semi-finals

Singapore set the lanes ablazed with a stunning 1230 in the fifth game and almost broke the record of 1262 set by Germany in 2011. Their superb effort hauled them straight into the lead which had an effect on all the contenders.

Malaysia managed only 959 while Team USA shot 1044 to take over second spot, just three ahead of Malaysia and 55 pins behind Singapore. Korea's Kim Moonjeong, Mik Minhee, Baek Sungja, Lee Nayoung and Jung Dawun was placed fourth, seven pins ahead of Colombia, who slipped down to fifth.

The leader ended on a high with another sizzling 1132 to seal top spot for the semi-finals with 6325. Malaysia bounced back with 1092 to qualify in second with 6227. The final two spots were hotly contested amongst Team USA, Colombia and Korea.

The contest was so close that it boiled down to the final frame. Team USA ended with 1000 for a total of 6138. Colombia confirmed their place in third with a final game of 1057 and a total of 6167. Korea's anchorwomen needed to mark her tenth and final frame and at least nine pins to beat Team USA by 1.

Jung, the Doubles gold medallist spared her tenth frame and struck in her bonus shot to clinch fourth position by two pins on 6140, to the delight of her team-mates and coaches. Team USA was devasted to miss out by such a small margin. Chinese Taipei, who was third overnight, finished sixth with 6041.

Team USA did receive a consolation though when Danielle McEwan topped the All Events standings with 5126 to win the gold. 2017 QubicaAMF World Cup and PWBA Wichita Open champion, Siti Safiyah of Malaysia earned the silver medal with 5048 while Chinese Taipei's Tsai Hsin-Yi took home the bronze medal with 5017.

Danielle McEwan capturing the All Events gold medal

Kelly Kulick finished eighth and will skip Step 1 Masters finals. The cut for 24th position to qualify for the Masters went to rookie Josie Barnes with 4860. Four Koreans, 3 each from USA, Malaysia and Colombia, 2 each from Indonesia, Denmark and Singapore, 1 each from Philippines, Netherlands, Japan, Mexico and Chinese Taipei made up the top 24 Masters finalists.

In the men's division, first block leader Chinese Taipei got off moderately with 1020 but lost the lead to Denmark's Jesper Agerbo, Dan Ostergaard-Poulsen, Mik Stamp, Carsten Warming Hansen and Thomas Larsen after the Danes fired a stunning 1147 to lead Team USA by 21 pins.

Denmark kept the lead with another superb game of 1080 in the fifth game. Team USA's Chris Via, Marshall Kent, Chris Barnes, AJ Johnson and Tommy Jones responded to the challenge to retain second, just three pins ahead of the fading Colombians.

But Colombia's Manuel Otalora, Oscar Rodriquez, Santiago Mejia, Jamie Gonzalez and Andres Gomez fought back galantly with 1034 to snatch top spot and advanced to the semi-finals as topseed with 6246. Denmark settled for second with 6225.

Chinese Taipei's Wu Hao-ming, Xu Zhe-Jia, Chen Wu-Chi, Hsieh Chin-Liang and Chen Wu-Chi bounced back to clinch third spot with 6207 while Team USA settled for fourth with 6099 for the last semi-final spot. Singles silver medallist, Wu topped the All Events standings to win the gold medal with 5221.

Colombia advancing to semi-finals as topseed

Doubles bronze medallist, Petteri Salonen of Finland took the silver medal with 5151 while AJ Johnson's 1290 in the 5-player Team event netted him the bronze medal with 5134. Larsen took eighth position with 5044 to earn a bye and skip Step 1 Masters finals.

The cut at 24th position went to Carsten Warming Hansen with 4946. Canada's Mitch Hupe and Chinese Taipei's Wang Ya-Ting both missed cut for the Men's and Women's Masters finals with a similar margin of 9 pins.

Three each from Colombia, USA and Chinese Taipei, 2 each from Canada, Denmark, Finland and Japan, one each from Australia, Germany, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Puerto Rico, Sweden and Venezuela made up the top 24 Masters finalists.

The Trios semi-finals and final will be contested tomorrow morning and the 5-player Team semi-finals and final in the afernoon.

Wu Hao-Ming securing the All Events gold medal

All the matches will be streamed live on the Olympic Channel and the World Bowling Championships website. The Masters finals on December 4 will conclude the 11-day 2017 World Bowling Championships at South Point Bowling Plaza, Las Vegas, Nevada.

Photos by Terence Yaw in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA.

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