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Two-handed Bowlers Reign Supreme in Sweden

Monday, September 10, 2018

The two-handed revolution in the sport of tenpin bowling is undeniable. In the field of 390 players at the PBA International-World Bowling Tour Storm Lucky Larsen Masters in Malmo Sweden, the top three place-getters bowl with both hands.

Overnight, defending champion Australia’s Jason Belmonte shot to the lead in Game 5 of the eight-game ‘Step Three’ round, retaining top seed position going into the stepladder finals with a 106 pin margin, ahead of Americans Kyle Troup and Billy O’Neill and Ireland’s Christopher Sloane.  Another two-handed bowler, Jesper Svensson from Sweden missed the cut by a mere two pins.
 
In the first stepladder match, 24-year-old Sloan from Dublin, opened in the seventh frame of a close match, but recovered by throwing six strikes to close out the contest and eliminate nine-time PBA Tour champion Bill O’Neill 236-234.  Troup advanced to the title match with a 235-187 win over Sloan, who was unable to sustain his first-game momentum.

Belmonte’s goal of back-to-back Storm Lucky Larsen Masters titles was frustrated in the championship match when he failed to convert the 2-10 split in the fourth frame and opened in the ninth, after rallying behind a string of four strikes.  Troup, a 27-year-old 10th-year PBA member, earned his third PBA Tour title and a 150,000 Swedish Krona (around AUD$23,000) first prize with a close fought 248-232 victory over Belmonte, who pocketed 110,000 SEK (around AUD$17,000) as runner-up.

Final Standings:
1. Kyle Troup, Taylorsville, N.C., USA
2. Jason Belmonte, Orange, NSW, Australia
3. Christopher Sloan, Dublin, Ireland
4. Bill O’Neill, Langhorne, Pa., USA

Stepladder Results:
Match One – Sloan def. O’Neill, 236-234.
Semifinal Match – Troup def. Sloan, 235-187.
Championship – Troup def. Belmonte, 248-232.

Step Three Leaderboard (after 8 games; top 4 advanced to stepladder finals):
1. Belmonte, 1,916.
2. Troup, 1,810.
3. O’Neill, 1,800.
4. Sloan, 1,776.

For further information, please contact Lynne Clay
Email: lynne.clay@outlook.com or phone 0419 444 280


The Malmo tournament – named in honour of Swedish PBA star Martin Larsen – was a World Bowling Tour points event. The tournament format involved multiple six-game qualifying squads to arrive at 60 finalists. Qualifiers 34-60 bowled the four-game Step One, with the top 11 advancing to Step Two along with qualifiers 9-33. The 36 players in Step Two bowled another four-game block, with the top 16 joining qualifiers 1-8 in Step Three for an eight-game round to determine the four stepladder finalists. In each “Step” round, pinfall from all previous rounds was dropped.

Overall, 390 players attempted to qualify for the finals but only 60 advanced. Throughout the 33 squads of qualifying, 4,175 games were played, totalling 780,739 pins with an overall tournament average of 187.