6th March, Doha: Squad A winner, Ghanim Aboujassoum of Qatar picked up another high series award after topping Squad C of the PBA-WBT H.H. Emir Cup 2019 but remained second in the overall qualifying standings.
Overnight leader, Kyle Troup of Taylorsville, N.C., had a poor start in the opening game of the second block with 170 and dropped down to fourth. Aboujassoum posted 228 to take over the lead with Ebrahim Aljadi of Kuwait moving into second spot.
A second Kuwaiti, Mostafa Almousawi improved to third followed by Danielle McEwan of USA in fourth. Aljadi added a strong 240 to take over the running after the eighth game but the Qatari youngster bounced back with 254 in the ninth game to regain the lead.
Aboujassoum went on to reel in 213, 247 and 208 to top the squad with 2628 on a six-games series of 1347 and winning his second high series award of US$200. McEwan also kept a good pace with 255, 216 and 248 to claim second position with 2608.
Troup recovered from a poor start to clinch third spot with 2606 while Aljadi faded off to finish fourth with 2513. 2017 World Championships Trios gold medallist, Eric Tseng of Hong Kong rounded out the top 5 with 2486.
Despite topping Squad C, Aboujassoum's 12-games total of 2628 did not better his Squad A total of 2696 and remained second in the overall standings. Squad B winner, Muhd Jaris Goh of Singapore remained in pole position with 2921.
Qatar's Yousef Al-Jaber and Hong Kong's Wu Siu Hong also retained fourth and fifth positions with 2664 and 2623 respectively. McEwan and Troup made the top bracket in sixth and seventh positions while seventh position went to South Africa's Francois Louw with 2576.
2017 Emir Cup champion, Jassim Al-Muraikhi occupied the eighth position reserved for the top Qatari not in the top 7 to automatically qualify for Step 2 finals. Alex Chong of Singapore headed the second bracket in ninth position with 2519.
Current cut after three squads at 25th position is occupied by Dhari Alameeri of Kuwait with 2353 or averaging 196.08. With one final squad to contest, the likely cut would be around the 2430 to 2450 region.
Saoud Al-Qayed, Jamal Al-Sahoti and Ahmed Al-Ruwaili occupied positions 26 to 28 reserved for Qatari qualifiers not in the top 25. There will be a one-game desperado squad to add four additional qualifiers for Step 1 finals.
Photos by Terence Yaw in Doha, Qatar.