US Open Nine-ball Championship

The US Open Nine-ball Championship is an annual pool tournament that has been in existence since 1976. Today, it is held in Chesapeake, Virginia. Though it is held on American soil and is labeled the "US Open", male professional pool players from around the world are eligible to compete in this event, as are females who qualify under the WPBA system, and it is considered one of the most sought-after titles in pocket billiards today.

Shane Van Boening is the current (2007) Men's Division title-holder, pocketing the largest first-place prize ever offered at this event of US$50,000 on October 20, 2007. Van Boening remained undefeated in the field of 233 players, beating the 2006 WPA Men's World Nine-ball Champion Ronato Alcano 13–10 in the finals. [ [http://billiardsdigest.com/news/display_article?id=909 "US Open Down to Final Four"] , "BilliardsDigest.com", October 20, 2007. Retrieved October 21, 2007] The current Women's Division champion is Allison Fisher.Cite journal|title=WPBA's Top 5|journal=Billiards Digest|month=February|year=2008|volume=30|issue=3|issn=0164-761X|publisher=Luby Publishing|location=Chicago, Illinois|pages=p. 55|accessdate=2008-02-14]

History

The tournament has been held since 1976. By 2005, the tournament featured 256 players from around the US and the rest of the world. The total purse for the tournament at that time was $200,000 where the winner was awarded $40,000.

Women are not allowed to compete in the Men's Division, and have their own Women's Division promoted by the governing body of women's professional pool, the Women's Professional Billiard Association (WPBA).

Barry Behrman is the tournament promoter of the US Open for men, and has been since its inception.

In 1976, the tournament venue was at Q-Masters pool room, located in Norfolk, Virginia. Today, the US Open Nine-ball Championship for men is held at the Chesapeake Conference Center in Chesapeake, Virginia.

The oldest pool player to have ever won the US Open Nine-ball Championship for men is Mike Lebron, 54 years old. The youngest pool player to have ever won the US Open Nine-Ball Championship is Mike Sigel, 21 years old. Traditionally, winners of the US Open Nine-Ball Championship are given a green blazer in recognition for this championship title and are awarded free entry fees to all future US Open Nine-ball Championship tournaments. American Earl Strickland is the record-holder for winning the Men's US Open five times (in 1984, 1987, 1993, 1997, and 2000). [ [http://usopen9ballchampionships.com/history2007.php "USOpen9BallChampionships.com'] . Retrieved 21 October 2007]

Feature matches are recorded and broadcast by Billiard Club Network and Accu-Stats Video Productions on a designated table at the Chesapeake Conference Center with commentary provided by various pool veterans and industry members. [ [http://www.billiardclub.net "BilliardClub.net"] Retrieved 21 October 2007] [ [http://www.accu-stats.com/Qstore/Qstore.cgi "Accu-Stats.com"] Retrieved 21 October 2007]

Format

The tournament format is double elimination (a player is out of the tournament after losing two matches) until two players remain. Most professional pocket billiard double-elimination formats, though, are not true double elimination formats, where the player who reaches the finals from the loser's side has to defeat the winner's side player twice for the title. At the US Open Nine-ball Championship, matches are played in race to 11, with the winner breaking. However, the final match, as is customary with most professional nine-ball tournaments today, is one extended race. At the US Open Nine-ball Championship, the extended race in the finals is 13 games.

Men's Champions

Women's Champions

The women's professional tour in the United States is promoted by the governing body of women's pool, the Women's Professional Billiard Association (WPBA). [ [http://www.wpba.com "WPBA.com"] . Retrieved 21 October 2007]

Unlike the men's US Open Nine-ball Championship which is open to all male pool players around the world, the women's US Open Nine-ball Championship is restricted to female touring pros who must qualify in order to compete in the event by scoring enough points on the WPBA tour.Clarifyme|date=February 2008

The 2007 US Open Nine-ball Championship on the WPBA tour is Allison Fisher who captured her third US Open victory as well as her fiftieth WPBA Classic Tour win. [ [http://www.wpba.com/pdfs/finals.pdf Cuetec Cues US Open] , "WPBA.com". Retrieved 21 October 2007.]

References

External links

* [http://www.usopen9ballchampionships.com/ Official Site]
* [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XKSZ6fCvSak Video] of a 2005 U.S. Open Nine-ball Championship match between Ismael Paez and Mika Immonen.


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