Belgian Eddy Merckx (2nd left above) survived one first round loss in the round robin phase of the main event to ultimately advance and reach the final match against France's Jeremy Bury (1st left above) in the Guri World Cup. Merckx, one of the toughest competitors in the professional 3-Cushion Billiard circuit proved once again why he is a multiple titleholder in Survival matches, World Cup's and World Championships with his victory.
The 51-year-old Belgian Eddy Merckx has won his eleventh World Cup in a one-man show in Guri in Korea. In the final match, he was by far the better of Frenchman Jérémy Bury with a generous score: 40-16 in 16 innings after a win in the semi-final over Korean local hero Jun-Tae Kim 40-21 in 17. Merckx rises to the world's number two position after his Guri victory with world champion Dick Jaspers still topping the ranking.
Merckx now leads the 2019 World Cup ranking together with Tayfun Tasdemir with 188 points, followed by Haeng-Jik Kim, Dick Jaspers and Lütfi Cenet.
The final four included Turkey's Tayfun Tasdemir (3rd left above) and the lone Korean and youngest player Jun-Tae Kim (4th left above). Once Merckx reached the knock-out round of 16 he simply played stronger and stronger right up to the end with ascending averages of 1.818 against Nguyen Quoc Nguyen, 2.000 against Quyet Chien Tran in the quarters, 2.352 versus Kim in the semi and finally 2.500 in his championship match against Bury.
The final ranking in Guri (match points, average, high run):
Congratulations to a great world cup champion - Eddy Merckx of Belgium.
Thanks to Kozoom and UMB for pictures and stats used in preparing this report.
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