Carlo Biado rules world 9-ball
Carlo Biado shoved the Philippines back on top of world pool Thursday night.
Flaunting the full range of his armory, Biado trounced Roland Garcia, 13-5, in their all-Filipino tussle for the World 9-Ball Championship title in Doha.
All that Biado needed was win the first seven racks to frustrate Garcia, who was hoping to complete an amazing climb to international acclaim.
From 7-0, it was a virtual cruise for the 34-year-old Biado to the $30,000 (about P1.8 million) champion’s purse at Al Arabi Sports Club.
Garcia, lacking in big-time tournament experience, tried to make a fight out of the alternate break format, but could come no closer than 8-3.
Showing the form that netted him the World Games gold medal in Poland last July, Biado took the next three racks for an imposing 11-3 spread.
Once regarded in the same mold as the legendary Efren “Bata” Reyes, Garcia made one last push to 11-5, but Biado quashed his desperate bid by reaching the hill in the next rack, 12-5.
If it’s any consolation, Garcia earned $15,000 for his effort.
Earlier in the morning, Biado and Garcia hurdled separate semifinal rivals.
Biado subdued Taiwanese Wu Kun-lin, 11-6, while Garcia trounced Albanaian sensation Klenti Kaci by the same
Against Wu, Biado broke free from a 3-3 count by taking the next four racks, reaching the hill at 10-6, and eventually ousting the last Taiwanese standing.
Pitted against the 18-year-old Kaci, Garcia, a former money game player, shattered a 2-2 count to forge ahead, 7-4, and finally break Kaci’s fighting spirit, 9-5.
Biado became the fourth Filipino to rule the event, tracing the footsteps of Reyes in 1999, Ronato Alcano in 2006 and Francisco “Django” Bustamante in 2010. Alex Pagulayan topped the event in 2003, but he was representing Canada then.
With his runner-up finish, Garcia matched Alcano’s effort in 2011 and that of Antonio Gabica in 2013. Bustmante also placed second in 2002 and Roberto Gomez in 2007.
Biado did not break a sweat in advancing to the Final Four as his quarterfinals opponent, Chinese Liu Haitao, overslept and got disqualified for failing to show up for the match within the 15-minute grace period. Liu arrived ten minutes past the allotted extra time and Biado was rewarded an 11-0 victory without pocketing a single ball.
In 2015, Biado came close to his first major win, yielding to Taiwanese Ko Pin-yi, 11-9, in their battle for the World 10-ball title.
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