The start of the final day encompassed the top 42 from the earlier qualifying rounds plus six of the women who did not make the cut, the latter a feature of the two major Catalonian tournaments.
Those placed 25 – 48 opened the proceedings with four games and from this group the top twelve were to advance to the next round. Then qualifiers 1 – 24 played their four games and again the top 12 went through to round two.
So, 24 players hit a further four games and from this group just the top three were to progress to the stepladder final, a one-game shoot-out between seeds two and three, then the winner taking on the top seed.
Helped along by a perfect game, the second of the tournament, Dominic Barrett of Colchester, England oupointed Gery Verbruggen of Belgium and American pro bowler Brian Voss, in that order, to line-up for the live Eurosport televised final and web streaming on www.tbowling.cat.
Well-known left-hander Verbruggen started against Voss with a strike, 3-7 split, and a double. Voss opened with five 9-spares and the scores were 97-94 in favour of the Belgian in frame five. Then Verbruggen went double, 9-spare, strike 8-spare, strike for 206. Voss hit a 2-10 split in the sixth frame, then three strikes, 7-spare, 7 for 197 and a quick exit.
Barrett came on stage after practising over on lanes 13-14 and immediately left the 2-10. Verbruggen replied with three strikes and stood on the crest of a wave. Then Barrett hit three strikes and the Belgian left the 4-6-10 split. Honours even in the sixth frame, 125-123 to Verbruggen.
It looked as though Barrett was in with a good chance after a double and 9-spare but the dreaded split man called again, this time the awful 3-4-6-7 from which he only took one pin. He struck out in the tenth for 196 but that was not enough as three strikes and a 9-spare from Verbruggen gave him 224 and the 2010 Ciutat de Barcelona title plus, of course, the €12,000 first prize.
“I’m happy, very happy, because I’m working on my comeback for maybe one year and a half,” stated an ecstatic Verbruggen. “so this is a very nice reward for it. I had a very good feeling today although I wasn’t feeling that I would win the tournament, but when I was playing against Brian Voss I saw he was having a few problems on the right lane. When Dominic Barrett started on that lane in the final game I thought maybe I have a chance because his ball was doing strange things. The pair of lanes were a little bit different and I moved two boards more to the right on lane six. Maybe I had a little advantage as I had already played one game against Voss on that pair.”
Thanks to great local organization, the final ran like clockwork and the Eurosport transmission was heralded a great success. There are many things the Catalonian Bowling Federation are very, very good at doing, and running fantastic tournaments is at the top of the list.
Full results and information on: www.tbowling.cat