Second session shared as Europe maintain lead - 15/10/2011
Europe 252 – 195 USA (5-2)
Barrett / Moor 289 – 265 Fagan / Jones (6-2)
Paul Moor 199 – 279 Tommy Jones (6-3)
Palermaa / Koivuniemi 178 – 220 O’Neill / Barnes (6-4)
Osku Palermaa 224 – 245 Bill O’Neill (6-5)
Moor / Koivuniemi 222 – 193 Jones / O’Neil (6-6)
TEAM EUROPE maintained their two point lead at the 2011 PartyPoker.com Weber Cup as the two sides shared the points over the six matches in the Saturday afternoon session.
For the Americans, it was an improvement on their showing yesterday as the lane looked a little more conducive and the scoring started to increase.
Trailing by two points, the Americans needed to repeat their Baker win of yesterday in the opening match of the Saturday afternoon session. However, it didn’t pan out as planned as the four European players recorded a big total of 252; 57 pins clear of their rivals to increase their overall lead to three points.
"No excuses, I made two terrible shots and momentum is a funny thing as I put us in a hole and Europe bowled a good game,” said American captain Chris Barnes.
"In our practice session it looked better for us but we didn't make many good shots and they had their feet on our throats," he added.
That lead increased to four points in the next as Paul Moor and Dominic Barrett looked on for this year’s first 300 game but left the 10 pin standing in the tenth frame and had to settle for a game-winning 289.
Their opponents, Tommy Jones and Mike Fagan started out with five strikes themselves but faltered in the face of the English onslaught. Their final total of 265, though, was a tournament best for the USA.
“We just wanted to take the game first and after that we thought about the 300 but getting the point on the board was the main thing," said Moor.
Tommy Jones, though, made up for it in the third game of the afternoon as he delivered 11 strikes, interrupted by a 9 spare in the fifth frame. That was plenty to see off Paul Moor who failed to break 200. It would have been Jones’s fourth 300 game in the history of the tournament.
“Momentum is a funny thing,” repeated Chris Barnes as his team won their second consecutive game to reduce arrears to 6-4, as Europe hit the skids.
220-178 was the score in favour of Barnes and Bill O’Neill as their Finnish opponents Osku Palermaa and Mike Koivuniemi were too loose as they recorded the worst score of the tournament to date.
There was more USA joy in the penultimate match of the afternoon session as Bill O’Neill got revenge for his defeat at the hands of Osku Palermaa yesterday with a tidy 21 pin victory to get within one of the Europeans. An open frame by Palermaa in the seventh was the turning point.
"I feel pretty good and that was what I needed for my confidence,” said O’Neill.
Europe though, regained the initiative in the final match after the game between Moor and Koivuniemi and Jones and O'Neill swung one way and then the next. But a terrible split from Jones in the ninth saw the US pair leave their third open frame of the contest and that cost them. Europe took it 222-193 to regain their two-point lead.
"We finished the game strongly but the lane was tough but it was an important game for us," said the big Finn.
Featuring a potential total of 33 matches over the weekend, the first team to reach 17 points will lift the coveted trophy. Starting in 2000, the USA has won six Weber Cups and the Europeans five, following last year’s 17-13 win at the Metrodome.