25th June, Macau: Topseeds James Lui of Hong Kong and Kang Hye Rim of KNSU, Korea captured their first international Men's Open and Women's Open Masters titles at the concluding 2023 Macao-China International Open on Sunday.
Lui, who topped the earlier 8-games Round 2 finals with 1812 to advance to the stepladder finals as topseed, needed only one match to beat challenger and second-seed, Jang Tae Joon, 212-202 to win the Men's crown.
The 26-year-old Hong Kong national team member knocked down seven strikes-in-a-row from frame four to clinch the coveted title. Jang, who had earlier ousted Darren Ong of Singapore and 2023 Singapore Open first runner-up, Yannaphon Larpapharat of Thailand, 237-222-210 to face Lui.
Sixth-seed, Larpapharat defeated fourth-seed, 2023 Hong Kong Open champion, Tun Hakim of Malaysia and fifth-seed, Wu Siu Hong, 211-203-203 in the first stepladder finals to advance to the next match.
Lui pocketed the top prize of MOP$70,000 (approx. US$8,900) as champion leaving Jang with MOP$30,000 as first runner-up. Ong, who ended up as third, went home with MOP$15,000 as second runner-up. Yannaphon, Hakim and Wu earned MOP$6,000, MOP$5,000 and MOP$4,000 respectively.
Meanwhile, Kang Hye Rim, who won the Women's Graded Masters title last night, denied Japan's Yuri Sato of Japan the victory after the 22-year-old dispatched Sato, 190-168 in the final match to capture the Women's crown.
Sato dispatched two Macau national bowlers, fourth-seed Lou Si Hang and fifth-seed, Veronica de Souza, 195-162-155 to advance to the second match. The Japanese also defeated two Koreans, second-seed Oh Hyun Ji and Shin Hye Bin, 216-109-208 to face Kang in the title match.
But Sato could not repeat the form she showed in the earlier matches and lost to the topseed. Kang won MOP$40,000 as champion while Sato settled for MOP$18,000 as first runner-up and Shin took home MOP$10,000.
Oh pocketed MOP$4,000, Lou MOP$3,000 and de Souza MOP$2,000 respectively as fourth, fifth and sixth place finisher. Kang topped the earlier 8-games Round 2 finals with 1677, followed by Oh and Sin with 1649 and 1606.
The trophies and prizes were presented at the victory banquet hosted by Macau-China Bowling Association attended by government dignitaries, sponsors, team officials and athletes. More than 250 bowlers from Asia participated at the championships.
Photos by Terence Yaw in Macau, China.