The professional pool year will close out in style for 2017 as the WPA World 9-ball Championship kicks off tomorrow at the Al Arabi Sports Club in Doha, Qatar.
This will be the eighth straight year that the Gulf country, through the Qatar Billiards and Snooker Federation (QBSF), has put its full backing behind pool’s biggest and most important event. As many as 128 players from over 40 countries will clash to see who will be crowned the king of 9-ball pool.
This is third world championship in cue sports that the venue will be hosting after the IBSF World Billiards Championship and IBSF World Snooker Championship last month.
The Group stages will run from December 9-11, wherein the players will be divided into 16 groups of 8 playing a race-to-9, alternate break, double elimination format. Four players from each group will make up the final 64, the dramatic single elimination phase of the tournament. Matches will then become a race to 11, alternate break, before a race-to-13 final, which takes place on December 14.
Earl Strickland is the only three-time winner of the competition, having won in 1990, 1991 and 2002, while two-time winners include Johnny Archer (1992, 1997), Taiwan’s Fong Pang Chao (1993, 2000) and Thorsten Hohmann (2003, 2013).
Last year, Austria’s Albin Ouschan added his name to the illustrious list of champions with a 13-6 drubbing of American Shane Van Boening. It was the second straight year that the talented American star had lost in the finals. In 2015, Van Boening lost out to Taiwan’s Ko Pin Yi.(WPA Pool)
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