Top Field Narrowed to 4 at International Challenge of Champions
By InsidePOOL Staff
With eight of the world’s top players present to vie for the $50,000 first place prize at the International Challenge of Champions, which kicked off today, August 11, 2004, o­nly four remain for Thursday’s matches. Presented by Billiards International, Ltd., the event is held at the beautiful Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, CT.
The first day of the Challenge of Champions consists of four matches, each a race to 7 with alternating breaks. A match-up of two world champions, o­ne former and o­ne current, saw Mika “Iceman” Immonen and Alex Pagulayan go head to head. “The Lion,” fresh from his huge win at the 2004 World Pool Championships several weeks ago, tied the match at 3 and then at 6 after recovering from two-game deficits in both cases. At hill-hill, Pagulayan broke and was looking good until he drew too far back after sinking the 8, hanging the cue ball in the jaws of the corner pocket. Hooked for the 9 ball that was o­nly inches away, he jacked up to make a stab at the 9 but fouled, handing Immonen a 7-6 victory.