From Monday night “ball handicap” 9 Ball, Tuesday “minus ‘1’ handicap 10 Ball, Wednesday “game handicap” 9 Ball, Thursday 6 red Snooker, Saturday afternoon “game handicap” 9 Ball to the more competitive “404 Tour” and the immensely popular Shooters Amateur 9 Ball Event occurring almost bi-weekly, Shooters has tournaments and leagues for every skill level. Check the calendar posted here, Facebook or at thethepoolscene.com for events and timing.

 

Wow! What a turnout! The holiday special of the Shooters Amateur Event brought out 92 players when the field size for this new tournament was opened beyond the typical limit of 64 players. The word ‘Amateur’ seems to have some ‘magic’ to it in attracting players. The original vision for the Amateur was for a field of 32 but high demand has significantly overridden that number. The 92 player field is the largest pool tournament turnout in Southern Ontario in several years. And with the large field and the competition being wide open with the winner not a foregone conclusion, the Calcutta generated a whopping $3700.

The 4th instalment of the Shooters Amateur 9 Ball Event took place between Christmas and New Year’s on December 27 and 28th. This event continues to attract new players with 165 different players having participated in the 4 events since the event’s inception in October 2014. In fact, registered players for the holiday event hit 105 but some had to be turned away due to concerns about completing the event in 2 days.

With 92 players, Saturday was a long day for many players. Because of the long day and the probability of going very late into Saturday night/Sunday morning, a decision was made to bring back more players on Sunday versus the typical 12 or 16. Even though 24 players returned for Sunday action, play did not wrap up Saturday night until about 1:00 a.m. From the undefeated ‘A’ side of the draw, Sumon Sarkar, Dylan Ireland, Ben Chang, John Everekian, Carlin Sanderson, Rob Johnson, Attilio Polsinelli, and Marcel Debuck returned for Sunday play. The one loss ‘B’ side of the draw saw Justin Zammit, Stuart MacTaggart, Richard Murray, Nikola Szarkezi, Al Porter, Brandyn Griffen, Kevin Lazaro, Jyri Kari, Isaac Ramos, Tol Kuy, Alan Ada, Cory Sherman, Chad Bishop, Rod Arsenault, Paul Duell and Peter Hetherington survive their Saturday matches to make a return appearance on Sunday.

Sunday proved to be another long day. In the ‘A’ side final, Attilio Polsinelli defeated Dylan Ireland sending Ireland to the ‘B’ side and Polsinelli to the hot seat. Ireland again prevailed over John Everekian to claim the ‘B’ side final setting up a rematch for the tournament title with Polsinelli. In the final match Dylan Ireland extracted his revenge on Attilio Polsinelli coming away with the tournament win.

Congratulations to Dylan Ireland on his tournament win. Dylan was a dark horse to win this event but it is a well deserved victory. Dylan has been practicing tirelessly for the past several months in order to improve his game. Practice and hard work have their rewards. And this is consecutive Amateur events where a Polsinelli has been runner-up in the tournament — Polsinelli pere and now Polsinelli fils.

Thanks to all who participated in the holiday Amateur. The days were long. The open field is a one-time or once-per-year occurrence as the field will generally be capped at 64 players.

The next Shooter’s Amateur Event will be held on January 24/25, 2015.

Despite the success of the tournament and the very heavy subscription to this event, there were more complaints than usual. From prize payouts being too small, too many places paid out, long waits and of course, handicaps. All of these issues can be traced at least in part to the logistical challenges in organizing and managing a tournament of 92 players on 15 tables. There were no decisions made that could have possibly pleased everybody and I can assure players that no decisions were made without considerable thought. If fewer places were paid out, the Saturday matches would have gone much later (i.e., 3:00 – 5:00 a.m.) and it would have been these same players playing very late who would be asked to return at 11:00 a.m. on Sunday. The out-of-town players would not have been happy. Alternatively, some of the players required to return Sunday would not cash out if fewer places were paid. Neither of these options seemed desirable and in the best interests of everybody. Apparent low payouts are the result of lower entry fees versus the ‘404’ Tournament and a higher percentage of lower handicapped players who pay lower entry fees. The Amateur Event appeals to a wider range of players than the ‘404’ so the player contribution to the prize pool is less than a 404. We welcome player comments and encourage constructive suggestions on how to improve the tournament playing experience.

** If you have pre-registered for the event you must be present and your entry fee paid by 11:00 a.m. on the day of the tournament. Failure to do so may result in your place being forfeited to an individual on the waiting list.**

Finish                                 Player                               Rank                                      Prize                                     Money                                   Calcutta

1st                               Dylan Ireland                             5                                          $900                                    $1,185

2nd                           Attilio Polsinelli                           4                                          $550                                      $815

3rd                             John Everekian                            9                                          $350                                      $555

4th                           Carlin Sanderson                          7                                          $250                                      $370

5-6th                         Justin Zammit                              7                                          $170                                       $185

5-6th                              Rob Johnson                             7                                          $170                                      $185

7th -8th                 Stuart MacTaggart                       6                                          $115                                      $92

7th-8th                         Ben Chang                                 8                                           $115                                     $92

9th -12th                    Sumon Sarkar                            7                                           $70                                        $55

9th -12th                   Richard Murray                           7                                           $70                                        $55

9th -12th                   Nikola Szarkezi                           5                                          $70                                         $55

9th -12th                   Marcel Debuck                            5                                          $70                                         $55

13th-16th                      Al Porter                                    8                                          $45

13th-16th                 Brandyn Griffen                           5                                          $45

13th-16th                   Kevin Lazaro                              5                                           $45

13th-16th                        Jyri Kari                                    6                                           $45

17th- 24th                 Isaac Ramos                                8                                           $30

17th- 24th                        Tol Kuy                                    8                                           $30

17th- 24th                      Alan Ada                                   6                                           $30

17th- 24th                  Cory Sherman                             7                                           $30

17th- 24th                   Chad Bishop                                6                                          $30

17th- 24th                  Rod Arsenault                              8                                          $30

17th- 24th                     Paul Duell                                    8                                          $30

17th- 24th              Peter Hetherington                        6                                          $30


Ramos triumphs… 

The pool playing universe in the GTA has found its natural place again. The 5th event of the 2014/15 ‘404’ series took place on January 3 & 4th, 2015 at Shooters Snooker and Sports Club with an expanded field of 72 players. Like the Shooters Amateur Event the preceding weekend, the ‘404’ tournament was over subscribed resulting in the need to expand the playing field beyond the typical 64 cap. Especially gratifying was the presence of the local men professionals who decided to participate despite the more challenging handicap system implemented this season. 

The holiday season has produced back to back successful tournaments with players not only from the GTA but players from London, Sarnia, Hamilton, St. Catherines, Guelph, Oshawa, Orillia, Newmarket and elsewhere making the journey for this long-time competitive event. With the participation of the professionals and other accomplished players, this resulted in the strongest ‘404’ field of the year. Our local female professionals were also well represented. 

After play concluded on Saturday, John Morra, Isaac Ramos, Eric Hjorleifson and Adam Monture were undefeated on the ‘A’ side while the ‘B’ side had Tom Polsinelli, Steve McAllister, Ben Chang, David Robbins, Brittany Bryant, Nello Robson, Romeo Zulueta, and Brandyn Griffen returning for Sunday play. The Sunday matches were very competitive. In the ‘A’ side final Hjorleifson defeated Ramos sending Ramos to the ‘B’ side and Hjorleifson to the hot seat.  Waiting for Ramos on the ‘B’ side was Brittany Bryant who had defeated Adam Monture for the right to face Ramos. The Bryant/ Ramos match was exceptionally well played with great potting, safeties, and kicks resulting in hill/hill suspense with Ramos squeaking through with the win and the ‘B’ side title. In an abbreviated Championship final Ramos extracted his revenge on Hjorleifson and came away with the tournament title. 

Congratulations to Isaac Ramos on his ‘404’ tournament win. Isaac has been steadily improving his game over the past few years with much more room to grow. And kudos to Erik Hjorleifson for his strong performance under the new and more demanding handicap system. While the new handicap system is more rigorous for the men professionals it is a given that the better players usually win regardless of the challenges of any handicap system. It has to be noted that 3 of the top 5 placements in the tournament were by professionals who just find ways to win. The GTA pool world has returned to normal. It is hoped here that the results of this past ‘404’ and the generally high competition of the tournament will continue to encourage more strong players in Southern Ontario to make a return to the game. 

As always, thanks to those who participated in the ‘404’ at Shooters Snooker and Sports Club. While pre-registration for the tournament remains an asset it is not without its issues as some players continue to fail to inform the tournament organizer of their change in plans. Players must notify the tournament organizer of cancellations in sufficient time to avoid unnecessary delays in the tournament start. This is a discourtesy to the tournament organizer and the rest of the players and causes the tournament to repeatedly begin late time after time. 

The next Shooters ‘404’ will be held January 31 and February 1st, 2015. 

** If you have pre-registered for the event you must be present and your entry fee paid by 11:00 a.m. on the day of the tournament. Failure to do so may result in your place being forfeited to an individual on the waiting list.**

 


                              Player                                                    Prize Money                                     Calcutta        
                              
1st                 Isaac Ramos    8                                           $1000                                              $1170         
2nd                Erik Hjorleifson    11                                      $650                                                $830         
3rd                 Brittany Bryant    7                                        $400                                                $520         
4th                 Adam Monture    9                                         $250                                                $330         
5-6th                John Morra    12                                            $175                                                $160         
5-6th                Ben Chang    8                                               $175                                                $160         
7th-8th          Steve McAllister    5                                    $115                                                  $85            
7th-8th          Brandyn Griffen    5                                      $115                                                  $85             
9th -12th      David Robbins    4                                           $70                 
9th -12th      Nello Robson    5                                             $70                  
9th -12th      Romeo Zulueta    6                                         $50                  
9th -12th      Tom Polsinelli    7                                            $50