podium hurghada

JUNG-HAN HEO: FIRST HUGE TRIUMPH IN EL GOUNA

HURGHADA EL GOUNA - The Korean Jung-Han Heo is the last winner of a World Cup in 2016. The first major success for the 39-year Asian on the global stage was a milestone in his career. In the final match of the World Cup in the Egyptian resort El Gouna, he defeated Dick Jaspers 40-29 in 19 innings. The Dutchman therefore missed the trilogy he wanted so badly. Jaspers took the 2016 World Cup trophy, but missed out on the ultimate World Cup victory in Egypt and the number one position in the world.

Jung-Han Heo, from Gimpo not far from Seoul, celebrated his first big triumph with an emotion rarely seen among Koreans. Doing his victory tour in the arena, he wildly swung his cue, did a hug with Jaspers and even kissed the billiard table. The proud winner, married, father of one son and one daughter, then shook hands with many fans and received lots of compliments.

The victory in the Red Sea's resort was more than deserved. On the final day, Heo first defeated another Asian coming-man, Quyet Chien Tran, by a final run of six, 40-24 in 25 innings. The latest tour de force against Jaspers was decided by Heo with runs of 8, 7 and 8, because his opponent couldn't shine with high scores. The final win in the World Cup tour nevertheless was a huge prize for Dick Jaspers. The Dutchman defeated among others Dani Sánchez (40-27 in 15), his opponent in next year's battle for the Super Cup in Antwerp.

The last Korean winner in a World Cup was Jae-Ho Cho, in Istanbul, 2014. The growing three cushion nation, with hundreds of thousands of billiard players, already tries to takeover power for a few years, but usually is beaten by the European heavyweights. Jung-Han Heo was not a real winner so far, though he had recorded some triumphs in his home country.

The curious moment in his race to the title was the match with Roland Forthomme in the first round. The Belgian finished at 40-33 and forced Heo to a small miracle. The Korean then did the impossible: he made 40-40 with a run of seven and won the shoot-out after a costly miss by Forthomme, 1-0. Then, actually, Heo was never in danger against Eddy Merckx (40-27 in 25), Kwang-Yeol Park (40-20 in 19) and finally against Tran and Jaspers on the final day.

Frédéric Caudron, the only player to win two World Cups, was eliminated by Hyung-Kon Kim in the first session, lost his chances to win the World Cup cycle 2016, but is still the number one in the world. Kwang-Yeol Park was one of the stars with victories over Jae-Ho Cho and Marco Zanetti. Haeng-Jik Kim excelled among others against Torbjörn Blomdahl (40-12 in 14), but was outplayed by Martin Horn in his next performance.

Jung-Han Heo forced his way to the world's top ten with his victory in El Gouna. The ranking is still led by Frédéric Caudron with 392 points ahead of Dick Jaspers and Dani Sánchez. Jaspers won the World Cup trophy 2016 with 286 points, followed by Frédéric Caudron (254) and Eddy Merckx with 182.

Semi-finals:

Dick Jaspers Martin Horn: 40-26 in 22

The sharpness and high-level runs made Dick Jaspers the better of Martin Horn, who couldn’t deal with the tension in this match. The German, who played a fantastic tournament, was stopped by the Dutchman in his twelfth match of this World Cup. ,,I will take my chance if I get it from Jaspers’’, he predicted before the match.

 

But Horn is not shadow of the player he was in the previous days. He starts with a promising seven in the second inning (10-0), but loses the control over the match after Jaspers scores six and nine for 23-11 in eleven innings. The Dutchman doesn’t really impress, but keeps a ten-points distance (23-13, 28-18), which can’t be closed by the German.

 

Dick Jaspers grabs the win, 40-26 in 22 innings, and for the third time this year he is in the final of a World Cup: a victory in Bursa against Frédéric Caudron, a loss against Caudron in Ho Chi Minh.

 

Jung-Han Heo-Quyet Chien Tran: 40-28 in 25

Both Asians are no real winners, but certainly belong to the upcoming subtop in global three cushion. Jung-Han Heo is for the first time in his career the final of a World Cup tournament. The cautious emotion after his victory over Tran is unusual for a Korean. The only Korean top player in the global circuit who behaved like Heo after a great win, was Kyung-Roul Kim, who died so unfortunately two years ago.

Jung-Han Heo and Quyet Chien Tran face each other in a tactical match without high runs. The match turns into Korean advantage (23-17) just before the break, but Tran is back in the 20th inning, 26-26. That’s his last effort, because Heo has the longest breath. He makes the gap with a six (34-28) and decides the match after 25 innings with another run of six (40-28).

 

 

 

The final ranking of the last World Cup:

1 Jung-Han Heo 10-1.680-9

2 Dick Jaspers 8-1.852-9

3 Martin Horn 6-1.678-14

3 Quyet Chien Tran 6-1.644-13

5 Dani Sánchez 4-1.844-12

6 Haeng-Jik Kim 4-1.833-11

7 Kwang Yeol Park 4-1.470-7

8 Sameh Sidhom 4-1.294-9

9 Ahmet Alp 2-1.861-9

10 Jérémy Bury 2-1.550-10

11 Marco Zanetti 2-1.500-7

12 Torbjörn Blomdahl 2-1.485-6

13 Hyung Kon Kim 2-1.416-12

14 Dong Koong Kang 2-1.379-6

15 Murat Naci Coklu 2-1.361-13

16 Eddy Merckx 2-1.340-8.

 

The new world ranking:

1 Frédéric Caudron 392 points

2 Dick Jaspers 368

3 Dani Sánchez 346

4 Torbjörn Blomdahl 326

5 Marco Zanetti 301

6 Haeng-Jik Kim 280

6 Eddy Merckx 280

8 Nikos Polychronopoulos 279

9 Sameh Sidhom 228

10 Jung-Han Heo 227

11 Jérémy Bury 222

12 Murat Naci Coklu 196

13 Jae-Ho Cho 195

14 Quyet Chien Tran 190

15 Tayfun Tasdemir 170

16 Pedro Piedra Buena 162

17 Semih Saygıner 155

18 Cenet 146

19 Leppens 145

20 Forthomme 140.

 

World Cup ranking 2016:

1 Dick Jaspers 286

2 Frédéric Caudron 254

3 Eddy Merckx 182

4 Nikos Polychronopoulos 176

4 Jérémy Bury 176.

 

Best matches in the World Cup cycle:

Dick Jaspers, Oh Tae Jun, 5.000

High run: Nikos Polychronopoulos 22.

 

 

(c) 2019 Union Mondiale de Billard