10th December, Petaling Jaya: Topseed Shahrukh Amin of Malaysia defied all odds to capture the prestigious the Masters Bowling Championships 2017 crown defeating top Korean professional, Jeong Tae Hwa, 226-210 in the title match.
The 17-year-old Pahang youth had a nervy start when he stumbled to a poor 6-pin split in his opening frame as his challenger and winner of the semi-final, Jeong struck twice to open up a 21-pin gap. Shahrukh bounced back brilliantly with five strikes-in-a-row while the Korean could not string together more strikes.
Just as Shahrukh was building up a small gap of nine pins after the seventh frame, another split in the eighth frame and a double from Jeong allow both the title contenders to level things up. Locked at 194 a peice after the ninth frame, it came down to the tenth and final frame.
The Malaysian struck twice to the cheers of the packed house at Sunway Megalanes but managed only six pins in his final throw. And if Jeong could do the same and a high pin count, he could take the match to a sudden decider.
Lady luck was on Shahrukh's side when Jeong managed only eight pins allowing Shahrukh to seal the match, 226-210 and win his first major title since winning the 2016 Milo Junior Circuit GP Finals. The champion was handsomely rewarded with the top prize of RM35,000 (approx. US$8,500).
Jeong, who settled for RM20,000 as first runner-up, had reached the final with an easy victory over third-seed and two-time PBA Player of the Year, Parker Bohn III of USA and winner of the first stepladder match, Malaysian national youth, Nerosha Keligit, 258-298-184.
Bohn took home RM10,000 as second runner-up while Keligit, who beat fifth-seed, Choi Suk Byung of Korea and compatriot, Christopher Tiong, 210-178-203 in the first match, earned RM9,000. Tiong picked up RM8,000 and Choi RM7,000.
Shahrukh topped the earlier 10-games finals with 2321 to advance to the stepladder shootout finals as topseed. Jeong finished second with 2291 and Bohn fired two huge games of 279 and 267 to take up third with 2289.
Nerosha and Choi qualified for the stepladder finals tieing fourth position with 2282 while Tiong, who was leading before the two final games, held on to sixth position with 2278.
Mr Darren Chear, Senior Manager - Branding & Communications, Sunway Malls was on hand to present the prizes to the winners. Players qualify for the finals with two best 3-games series in unlimited attempts. The top 47 finishers alongside defending champion, ex-international, Kang Bo Long contested the finals over 10 games. Men's Graded bowlers (average 195 and below) and women bowlers received 6 pins handicap per game.
Photos by Terence Yaw in Petaling Jaya, Selangor.