The quarterfinal pairings for the 2011 World Cup of Pool has been set and all 8 teams have a good shot in bagging this year’s crown. Here are the previews for each match-up:
Sweden vs. Korea
Sweden: vs. (16) Indonesia 8-7; vs. Switzerland 8-6
Korea: vs. (8) Spain 8-5; vs. (9) Japan 8-6
Marcus Chamat & Thomas Mehtala (Sweden) faces a similarly streaking Lee Gun Jae & Hwang Yong of Korea. Both teams were not ranked high in this tournament but 3 seeds have been eliminated by the 2 pairings. Among the four, Chamat is the most accomplished individually while the 3 others are not as known yet outside their respective countries. This pairing will be the dubbed as the battle of the underdogs. With the form that both teams are playing expect to see a close match.
Prediction: Sweden 9 – Korea 5
(5) Philippines B vs. (4) Germany
Philippines B: vs. Kuwait 8-4; vs. India 8-5
Germany: vs. Australia 8-0; vs. Malaysia 8-3
This is one of the most anticipated quarterfinal match-ups. Efren Reyes and Francisco Bustamante face Ralf Souquet & Thorsten Hohmann. The Philippines Team B won the World Cup in 2009. They are probably one of the oldest teams in the entire competition. Souquet, who recently won the World Pool Masters at the same venue as the World Cup of Pool, banners Germany. It will be hard to pick the winner of this match but Bata and Django might have some sort of home court advantage. One can expect a very close match full of lead changes.
Prediction: Philippines B 9 – Germany 7
Thailand vs. (11) Poland
Thailand: vs. (14) Holland 8-4; vs. Estonia 8-4
Poland: vs. Vietnam 8-0; vs. Singapore 8-3
Thailand’s Nitiwat Kanjanasri-Kobkit Palajin pairing is one of the biggest surprises in the tournament as they beat European teams Estonia and Holland with a similar 8-4 scores. They face a Polish team represented by Karol Skowerski & Radoslaw Babica. Poland has defeated 2 straight Southeast Asian teams. Whose streak will continue?
Prediction: Thailand 6 – Poland 9
(7) Taiwan vs. (2) Philippines A
Taiwan: vs. Russia 8-4; vs. (10) Italy 8-7
Philippines A: vs. Austria 8-2; vs. (15) Canada 8-6
The other big match of the day will be between Dennis Orcollo & Ronnie Alcano of the Philippines and Ko Pin-yi & Ko Ping-chun of Chinese-Taipei. Orcullo is currently the World No.1 ranked pool player. Alcano is a former world 9-ball champ. 22 year old Ko Pin-yi is the recent winner of the Guiness World Series of Pool while 15 year old brother is a recent Japan Open runner-up. This match can certainly go either way.
Prediction: Taiwan 8 – Philippines A 9