Sunday, September 20

In it to win it.

Well it's the Galveston World Classic final day. I was actually thinking of not posting anything yet, as if it could affect the outcome of today's match. Then I figured, I'm way beyond that kind of thinking. After all, I am not superstitious.

So what do we have here? -I am in the so called "hot seat", meaning I am awaiting for the outcome of the only semi-final between Warren Kiamco and Mike Dechaine. Furthermore, due to the true double-elimination format, the winner of that match would have to beat me twice in the finals to earn the title.

So I guess I consider myself a favorite without even bragging about it. If I just play solid, I have two shots at the win. Of course I'd like to close it out ASAP, not leaving any lingering thoughts of a double-dipper for the other guy.

I have had a crazy tournament so far. a couple of really close calls. One of the matches was against Rodolfo Luat. I was up 7-5, then he ran a couple racks, went up 8-7. He was still running the balls to make it 9-7, but then he rattled the 10-ball deep in the corner. So I made it 8-8 and from there broke and ran 2 more racks. I could see he was still a little shaken of missing the 10 ball earlier, so in the next rack he missed an opportunity after my dry break. I closed the door on him 11-8.

The more dramatic match wass against Shane, of course. I had two hill-hill battles with him preceding this event, and it looked like this one was not going to be any different. Actually, let me take that back. Van Boening did look like he was going to run away with it. He fluked a 2-ball in four rails and broke a cluster to run out for a 3-2 lead. on top of that he continued to break and run two more. 5-2. I tried to hang in there, but my break was off. I scratched twice of my break. Honestly, I still have to work on my 10-ball break to get it up to speed with him. So he was all the way up to an 8-4 lead when I had another chance. I ran out, but again left him a table for him to make a commanding 9-5 lead.-Not so fast though. he made a position error on the 7. left it straight in along to long rail. 8 was on the other side, He tried a back-and-forth table lenght draw with english but hit it bad and nrealy scratched in the corner. From the jaws of the pocket long cut-shot on the 8....missed! He over-cut it. I had a relatively easy shot to the side for the 8 and then shape for the 10 the other side. Then I finally found the sweet spot for breaking, and ran out two racks to even the score at 8-8. Next rack I missed a long to in the corner because I was trying to get too perfect for the 3. He ran out. I think then he then scratched on the break. I had a tough out, tricky position from the 1 to the 2, to get to the 3 etc. I treid to billiard the 9 in the side of the 3 but instead of it going in, it hung there. Luckily he was snookered. 3 was clustered with two other balls near the corner. He then made an intentional foul hitting the 9-ball away from the side. He probably forgot that he had a scratch of the break. So now he was on 2 fouls. I clipped the 3 really thin and soft and buried both the cue-ball and object ball. When I told him he was on two fouls, he eyes widened in surprise, then his body language told me that he was already kicking himself for making the intentional foul earlier. He missed the masse shot I got the rack: 9-9. I'm not sure what happened the next rack but I know he got to the hill first. He broke, but the 1 and the cue-ball got kissed around. he had to play safe. I safed him back. Then he came with a really nice thin cut-shot on the one, but didn't have position on the 3. He plays safe drawing the cueball all the way to the other side near back rail. 3-ball near middle opposite rail. I took a really long hard look at the situation. Decided to go for a long back-cut bank. Had to even swerve around the 8 to make it. It went in! I narrowly missed the scratch in the side of the 8, and went down for a position on the 4. I proceeded with the out.
Hill-hill again, I broke, made a ball. Had a shot on the 1, made it. Got short on the two. had to hit it a little fuller with english to avoid the scratch. I am nervous. I rattled it but it bounced back from the opposite rail to the original corner. wow, what a roll. It wasn't over yet though. I had a tricky position on almost every ball(or was it because I was nervous?). I kind of hooked myself of the perfect angle on the 7 to the 9, but managed again to swerve around the 9 to make the 7 pocket speed. Then just cut the 9 in the side and rolled the 10 gently in to the corner for the win! Phew.

Next was Mike Dechaine for the hot seat.

Mike got of to a good start going ahead 2-0. I managed to retaliate, and after I was up 7-3, it didn't look like Mike was going to get back in the game. He contantly missed key positions, then having to play safety-battles. I seemed come out ahead most of the time creating a commanding lead. I even 3-fouled Mike as well. I had some fortune of the breaks too. When I didn't make a ball, he had to play safe or push. It really went my way most of the time. I didn't commit the unforced errors that he did and went on the win the match 11-3.
I think Mike needs a little more experience on TV, He'll be fine. He has a lot of fire-power, just needs to get used to the cameras. I guess.

Finals will start 9PM Eastern time. Local Houston time 8pm.

Check out the action at for live stream on the web.


The Chiconomist Celine said...

awesome post! good luck love!!! :-)

bumblebee04 said...

Goodluck Mika!

R.A. Dyer said...


Great description of your match-up with Shane. I've posted up a link to it on the pool history blog.
And congrats on your victory in the finals.


R.A. "Jake" Dyer

jlaitine said...

Good to see that man is in shape. regards from fin-fil couple met back in Makati was it 2002 or so...