17th December, Seberang Prai: 2018 Chinese Taipei Open first runner-up, Syaffique Ikhwan of HPS won the Mixed Open Round 1 finals and led four other Malaysians to dominate the 47th Penang Pesta International Bowling Championships on Tuesday.
Ex-national, Ameera Dato Aznel got off the block with a superb 267 in her opening game to lead last year's first runner-up, Muhd Nur Aiman of Johor by five pins. Ex-Singapore international, Remy Ong and Noor Afizal Azizan also registered big games of 257 and 253 to take up third and fourth.
2018 World Men's Championships Doubles gold medallist, Adrian Ang, who had a moderate start with 209, added a sizzling 268 in the second game to move into the lead. Syaffique, who started with 247, posted 224 to take up second, six pins adrift.
2014 Incheon Asian Games mutiple gold medallist, Lee Nayoung of Korea improved to third with 225 and 227 while national kegler, Shahrukh Amin and Ong were running in the top five. The Korean fired 245 to become the third leader while Shahrukh added 256 to take over second spot.
Ahmad Aidil of Penang downed back-to-back 257s to move into third with Syaffique and Ang rounding out the top five. Shahrukh posted 235 to become the fourth leader as Lee, Syaffique and Ahmad all tied in second at the halfway point of the round.
The left-handed Syaffique then posted back-to-back 279s to cement his lead. Ang rolled 215 and 290 to move into second while Ahmad downed 215 and 235 for third. There was no stopping Syaffique as he cruised with 214 and 237 to win the round with 1934. Ahmad added a sizzling 268 in the seventh game and 215 in the eight to claim second position with 1858.
Ang finished third despite ending with 196 for a total of 1836. Shahrukh settled for fourth position with 1826 while 2019 Asian Championships Trios bronze medallist, Muhammad Hafiz Zainuddin rounded out the top five with 1816.
Lee was the best non-Malaysian finishing in sixth position with 1805. Australia's Callum Borck, who was hovering below 18th position, almost shot the tournament's second perfect game but missed out with 299. However his final game allowed him to leapfrog into eighth position.
2018 World Men's Championships Singles and Philippines 30th SEA Games Team gold medallist, Rafiq Ismail survived the cut after beating Sarawak's Musayyar Khalid, 223-202 in a one-game roll-off tie-breaker after both finished the round with 1710 in 18th and 19th positions.
2019 25th Asian Championships and Philippines 30th SEA Games Singles gold medallist, Timmy Tan rolled the tournament's first 300 in the sixth game to finish in the top 10. The top 18 will be joined by the top 3 local and top 3 overseas seeded qualifiers for another 8 games in tomorrow's Round 2 finals commencing at 10.00 am local time. The top 3 with the highest pinfalls at the end og the round will proceed to the Stepladder shootout finals.
Photos by Terence Yaw in Seberang Prai, Malaysia.