Holtz Sets Up Match with Alcaide
Pat Holtz became the second player through to the semi-finals of the 2007 PartyPoker.net World Pool Masters. Holtz was made to work hard to clinch an 8-5 triumph against home favourite Niels Feijen in the opening match of day three of the tournament. This win means at least one debutant will be competing in the final as Holtz meets Spain’s David Alcaide in the first semi-final.
Niels Feijen, who defeated Imran Majid in the opening round on Saturday, won the lag and claimed the opener in front of a large crowd at the Hotel Zuiderduin. Holtz, who is known as Silky, had no luck when he first broke in the second but then got the edge after a lengthy safety battle to tie things up at 1-1.
The Scotsman was fortunate to beat an off-form Li He-wen but a 6-9 combination saw him gain an early advantage as he stole Feijen’s break. But this lead did not last long as Holtz missed a long pot on the 2-ball, his first error of the contest, and Feijen did the rest to bring it back to 2-2.
Feijen was benefiting from some good fortune as Holtz fluked the 4-ball, but was not happy as that meant he had snookered himself when aiming for the 1-ball. His next shot saw him foul as the cue ball clipped the six to give Feijen ball-in-hand and the Dutch player took advantage for a 3-2 lead.
Holtz ran through the next but finally got some good luck as Feijen registered a dry break. The Scot laid a safety and that resulted in Feijen completely missing the ball with an attempt at the 3-ball. With ball-in-hand, Holtz claimed the rack after a fine run of shots, including a spectacular bank shot on the 4-ball into the left middle pocket.
Holtz surprised many people by reaching the last 16 of the World Pool Championships and was on course for another upset as he moved two ahead at 5-3. He then claimed his fourth in a row for 6-3 as the home crowd were sensing a defeat for local player Feijen.
With the break, Holtz ran out to move to the hill and with no shot at the one for Feijen in the next, Holtz was back at the table on the edge of victory. But it was not to be this time as the Dutchman then kept himself in the tournament by moving to 7-4.
A dry break came at the worst possible time for Holtz and a stunning bank shot on the 1-ball into the right centre pocket helped Feijen to narrow the gap further at 7-5.
In the 13th frame Holtz got a bit of luck as he edged the 3-ball and then watched as the cue-ball inadvertently flicked the 8-ball into the top right pocket. Holtz then held his nerve to pot the rest of the balls for a place in this evening’s semi-finals.