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      February 24, 2003:

-Malaysia Sweeps World Tenpin Team Cup

02/24/2003 - Bowling Newsline
      Malaysia's women earned their first world title and Malaysia's men won in their first ever stepladder appearance Feb. 23 in the 5th Federation Internationale des Quilleurs World Tenpin Team Cup in Odense, Denmark.

      A winner of several Asian Zone titles and two bronze medals in the Calgary 1996 and Netherland 1998 World Tenpin Team Cup, Malaysia's women have never earned a gold medal at any World championships. The Malaysian men's team last won a gold medal in the trio's event at the Manila FIQ World Championships in 1979.

      England won the women's silver medal and Team USA the women's bronze. Sweden earned men's silver and Australia the bronze. Team USA's men finished ninth while Canada's men were fifth and its women were eighth.

      In the women's event, Malaysia (Wendy Chai, Sarah Yap, Shalin Zulkifli, Choy Poh Lai, Sharon Chai and Lai Kin Ngoh) finished the round robin in third place and met second place Team USA (Shannon Pluhowsky, Phoenix; Diandra Hyman, Dyer, Ind.; Lucy Sandelin, Tampa, Fla.; Kristal Scott, Painesville, Ohio; Kari Schwager, Montgomery, Ill.; and Jennifer Petrick, Canton, Ohio), in the first two-game stepladder match. Team USA won the first game 174-167. In the second game, Team USA spared in the first frame, left the 2-10 split in the second frame then followed with six strikes. In the ninth frame, Team USA left the 1-3-7-10 and took only one pin on the spare attempt. A strike and spare in the 10th frame gave Team USA 217 and a 391 total.

      Malaysia began the second game with a strike, had a split in the second frame and followed with four strikes. The turning point was the seventh frame when Malaysia left the 1-2-4-10 and made the spare. It finished with five strikes for 244 and 411 total.

      Malaysia went on to meet round-robin leader England in the championship match. After beating the field by 20 points in the round robin, England never got going in the championship match. Malaysia bowled 218 to England's 173 in the first game and 191 to England's 156 in the second game, to win the match 409-329.

      The first match in the men's event saw third-place Sweden overtake second-place Australia 439-423 to meet the round-robin leader Malaysia (Azidi Ameran, Ben Heng, Zulmazran Zulkifli, Jonathan Lim, Daniel Lim and Alex Liew). The championship match was close with Malaysia taking the first game 223-210. In the second game, Malaysia had the first eight strikes, left the 3-6-7 in the ninth frame and spared. Sweden had a spare in the first frame, followed by eight strikes. It was all over for Sweden when Patrick Bakke, bowling first, left the 7-10 in the 10th frame for 254. Malaysia's Ben Heng got the first strike in the 10th followed by nine spare for 269 and 492 total over Sweden's 464. Sweden's men have been in all five WTTC stepladder finals. They now have two gold and three silver medals.

      This world team championship was played in the Baker format. In the Baker format, each player plays two frames per game. The leadoff player bowls the first and sixth frame, the second player the second and seventh frame and so on. Each of the 15 men's and 15 women's teams played three round robins of two-game matches against each country. Points were awarded on the basis of one point for each game won and one point for the match won (two-game total). The top three teams in each division played a stepladder final of two-game matches.

      Team USA's women finished the round robin second with 93 points and a 201.5 overall average.

      Team USA's men (Andrew Cain, Tempe, Ariz.; Tony Manna Jr., Omaha, Neb.; David Haynes, Las Vegas; Sean Rash, Anchorage, Alaska; Bill Hoffman, Columbus, Ohio; and Dino Castillo, Dallas) were fifth entering Saturday's final round-robin action. But they won only 7.5 of a possible 27 points to finish with 69 points and a 200.8 overall average.

      Team USA swept the gold medals in the 2000 competition.

      Canada's men (Jack Guay, Calgary, Alberta; Fred Phillips, London, Ontario; Danyck Briere, Montreal; Ray Vervynck, Whitby, Ontario; Jason Kovack, Windsor, Ontario; and Matthieu Chouinard, St. Hilarion, Quebec), finished with 79.5 points and a 198.2 average.

      Canada's women (Julie Johnson-Loyer and Manon Deserranno, Montreal; Robin Crawford, Milwaukee; Lynne Gauthier and Sharon Tataryn, Winnipeg, Manitoba; and Kellie Hildebrandt, Calgary, Alberta), ended with 72.5 points and a 196.4 overall average.

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