BANGKOK: Bowler Eric Ang led Malaysia to a clean sweep of the honours in the Youth Open Masters Finals of the Thailand International Open at the BSC Bowl here yesterday.
The 18-year-old Eric set a blistering pace from the start of the 10-game round-robin competition to overtake fellow Malaysian Sharon Koh, who had a 90-pin handicap.
Girls are given a nine-pin handicap in a match against the boys in the Open division competition. Eric soon caught up with Sharon and overtook her from the fourth game onwards.
Eric posted lines of 235-170-226-238-222-211-138-202-219 and 219 for a total of 2,080 to pocket 30,000 baht (RM3,000) in prize money.
Malaysia's Kelvin Tan bowled two high games in the ninth (247) and 10th game (237) to snatch second position from Sharon with a total of 2,025. Sharon, who was the top qualifier in the 18-bowler Finals, settled for third place on 1,998.
Eric though that he had lost the chance to win the title after a poor 138 in the seventh game.
“When I missed three pin 10s and had two splits in the seventh game and ended up with 138, I thought it would be hard to make up the deficit,” he said.
“But I told myself to put more focus and concentration into my game and not to give up.”
Eric, who was the runner-up to Aaron Kong in the Milo International Junior All-Stars last year, considered himself lucky.
“I was able to finish Finals with three good 200-plus games while Sharon did not have high games,” he said.
Eric has also qualified for the men's Open Masters Finals, which began yesterday afternoon.
He is hoping to do well and make the cut for the Thai leg of Asian Bowling Federation's (ABF) Tour this weekend by finishing among the top 16.
Malaysia's other young bowlers also gave good accounts of themselves in the youth Finals, among them 13-year-old Sin Li Jan, who took sixth position on 1,915.
Youth Open Finals: 1. Eric Ang (Mas) 2080, 2. Kelvin Tan (Mas) 2025, 3. Sharon Koh (Mas) 1998, 4. L. Songvit (Tha) 1957, 5. P. Pasut (Tha) 1947,
6. Sin Li Jane (Mas) 1915, 7. T. Tousaphon (Tha) 1906, 8. Mohd Nor Aiman (Mas) 1903, 9. Alex Choo (Mas) 1899, 10. Lee Jong-hun (Kor) 1832,
11. Nur Syakirah Yeoh (Mas) 1824, 12. Natee Intharachot (Tha) 1823, 13. L. Badin (Tha) 1821, 14. Hwang Byung-young (Kor) 1820, 15. Wan Mohd Fauzwan (Mas) 1757,
16. Lee Sung-kyun (Kor) 1748, 17. Kim Yun-dong (Kor) 1713, 18. Tengku Ariff (Mas) 1629.