World Series: a sell-out?

by Bob Johnson 0

With only a month to go before the start of the 2010-11 Lumber Liquidators PBA Tour season, the Professional Bowlers Assn. is expecting a capacity field of 256 entries for the season-opening PBA World Series of Bowling at South Point Bowling Center in Las Vegas.

As of Sept. 24, fewer than 60 spots remained available to PBA and international players hoping to bowl in the World Series, which gets underway on Oct. 25 and concludes on Nov. 6. The World Series will include five “animal pattern” events – Cheetah, Viper, Chameleon, Scorpion and Shark Championships – which also will serve as the qualifying competition for the 2011 PBA World Championship, and a special USA vs. The World competition.

A one-time $750 entry fee covers the entire World Series. In addition, PBA members are being offered special room discounts for the duration of the event at South Point Hotel, Casino and Bowling Center. Entry information can be found on pba.com.

Included among the early entrants are competitors from 14 international federations, including WTBA World Men’s Championships doubles partners Mathias Arup and Martin Paulsson of Sweden, who won the only gold medal at the recent championships not claimed by Team USA’s lineup of PBA stars Bill O’Neill, Rhino Page, Patrick Allen, Chris Barnes, Wes Malott and Tommy Jones.

In addition to the United States and Sweden, players are entered representing Australia, Canada, Colombia, Denmark, England, Finland, Germany, Japan, Norway, Puerto Rico, South Korea and Venezuela.

Beginning on Monday, Oct. 25, and over a span of five consecutive days, all players will bowl 12 games on the Cheetah, Viper, Chameleon, Scorpion and Shark patterns, respectively. The combined pinfall for those 60 games will determine the standings for the PBA World Championship. The World Championship will pay one-in-four with last-to-cash (64th place) paying $1,800 based on a capacity field of 256 players.

In addition to the overall PBA World Championship standings, the top 16 qualifiers on each daily animal pattern will advance to nine-game round-robin match play finals which will be held the following week. All 16 will cash with a $1,800 low-to-cash prize in addition to whatever they may earn based on their World Championship finishing position.

After 21 games on each animal pattern, the top five will advance to the stepladder finals which will be taped on Friday, Nov. 5, and Saturday, Nov. 6, for taped-delayed broadcast on ESPN. First prize for each animal pattern championship will be $15,000 and each winner will be credited with a PBA Tour title.

The USA vs. The World special event will pit the top six United States bowlers after 60 qualifying games against the top six international players in the made-for-TV team competition which will be taped on Nov. 6.

Bob Johnson

Bob Johnson has received more national writing awards than any other bowling writer — close to 70 over the course of his 40-year career. He began at age 16 as a staff writer and then assistant editor for the weekly Pacific Bowler newspaper in his native California, and within three years was writing feature stories for Bowlers Journal. He has written for the magazine ever since, except for a five-year span when he was hired as the founding editor of another magazine. He moved to Chicago in 2000 and spent 13 years in the Windy City, including five as Bowlers Journal’s Editor. In 1975, Johnson received the Robert E. Kennedy Award as California’s top undergraduate high school journalist. Five years earlier, on the lanes, he had shared the Bantam Division Doubles championship in the Orange County Junior Bowling Association Championships. Today, he continues to work full-time for Bowlers Journal as its Senior Editor, to write his popular “Strikes Me” column, and to edit Luby Publishing Inc.’s weekly business-to-business Cyber Report.