Professional Bowlers Association
Finland’s Osku Palermaa and Singapore’s Joey Yeo won the men’s and women’s singles titles in the inaugural Bowling World Open Sunday. Each earned an $81,000 first prize in the showcase event contested in a six-lane bowling arena inside Makuhari-Messe Convention Center in suburban Tokyo. The finals were nationally-televised in Japan.
Palermaa, a 31-year-old two-handed player, earned his fifth Professional Bowlers Association title with a 248-224 victory over home-country favorite Isao Yamamoto, a Japan PBA member. Palermaa started the match with seven strikes on his first eight shots to take an insurmountable lead.
Palermaa earned his berth in the championship match by out-striking Bill O’Neill of Langhorne, Pa., 266-255, in the semifinal round while Yamamoto eliminated men’s top qualifier Dom Barrett of England, 256-224.
Yeo used a string of five strikes to overcome a pair of early splits on her way to a thrilling 207-204 victory over top-qualifier Birgit Poppler of Germany in the women’s final. Poppler bowled a clean game, but had only one double after running away with a 258-224 victory over American star Kelly Kulick of Union, N.J., in her semifinal match. Yeo ousted Venezuela’s Karen Marcano in the other semifinal match, 234-181.
The Bowling World Open was conducted by World Bowling, the international governing body for tenpin bowling, and supported by the Japan Bowling Congress, National Bowling Federation of Japan, the PBA and other bowling interests around the world in support of World Bowling’s bid to include bowling in the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games. Bowling is one of eight sports in contention for possible inclusion in the 2020 Summer Olympics.
A major championship on the PBA International-World Bowling Tour, the Bowling World Open began with a field of 567 bowlers from 52 countries.
BOWLING WORLD OPEN
Makuhari-Messe Convention Center, Tokyo, Sunday
Championship: Osku Palermaa, Finland ($81,800) def. Isao Yamamoto, Japan ($40,800), 248-224.
Semifinal Round: Semifinal Match One – Yamamoto def. Dom Barrett, England ($12,240), 256-224. Semifinal Match Two – Palermaa def. Bill O’Neill, U.S. ($12,240), 266-255.
Championship: Joey Yeo, Singapore ($81,800) def. Birgit Poppler, Germany ($40,800), 207-204.
Semifinal Round: Semifinal Match One – Poppler def. Kelly Kulick, U.S. ($12,240), 258-227. Semifinal Match Two – Yeo def. Karen Marcano, Venezuela ($12,240), 234-181.