Japan Cup Down to 32

by PBA Editor September 20, 2006 19:00
Though his lead after 20 games of qualifying will not carry into round robin match play, Michael Fagan still feels good about his chances in the Dydo Japan Cup 2006.

Fagan, looking for his first career Denny’s PBA Tour title, finished qualifying with a 4,767 20-game pinfall Thursday at the Shinagawa Prince Hotel. He leads a group of 32 bowlers into round robin match play Friday, where scores start from scratch.

The 25-year-old from Greenlawn, N.Y., averaged 240.25 in his eight games Thursday to maintain his lead over Wes Malott (Dallas, Texas). Fagan started and ended his block with his two highest games, firing a 278 to start the day and finishing with a 268.

“I tried a different ball today to see what it would do and I feel like I have a couple different options for match play,” said Fagan. “I feel comfortable and hopefully I can continue the success I’ve had in match play.”

Malott, who made the championship round in his first career Japan Cup last season, remained second with 4,655. Ryan Shafer (Horseheads, N.Y.) is third with 4,604.

“We don’t bowl this format on the PBA Tour and it requires a little different strategy,” said Malott of the qualifying scores not carrying over into match play. “This year I know what the strategy is and I’m going to take advantage of it.”

The two-time defending Japan Cup champion and reigning PBA Player of the Year Tommy Jones (Simpsonville, S.C.) had a solid day, moving up from 20th at the start of the day to seventh. He is looking to become just the second bowler to win three consecutive Japan Cup crowns.

Parker Bohn III (Jackson, N.J.), the only man to accomplish that feat, missed the cut, as did Doug Kent (Newark, N.Y.). The brothers-in-law were the only two of the 20 PBA players who failed to advance to match play.

The nine-bowler finals will take place Sunday, September 24 at the Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium. The final round will air tape-delayed on ESPN Sunday, October 22 at 1 p.m. ET.


Shafer Happy to Be Back

Ryan Shafer is making his ninth Japan Cup appearance, but he’s appreciating this one even more after missing out last season.

A member of the Japanese media pointed this out at the evening’s press conference by saying “We missed you last year.”

Shafer’s response: “I missed you last year too.”

The four-time Denny’s PBA Tour titlist has always looked forward to coming to Japan.

“I made it my first time in 1992 and ever since then I’ve made it a goal of mine at the beginning of the season to qualify for this event,” said Shafer. “This is one of the most prestigious tournaments. Qualifying means you bowled well all year and it’s a great reward for that. The people treat us great and the tournament is run very well. I think we all make it a goal to come here.”

Shafer has made the Japan Cup finals five times in his eight trips, including a runner-up finish to Bob Learn Jr. in 2001. All of his championship round appearances came when the event was held at Tokyo Port Bowl. This year, the finals will be held in the Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium for the second consecutive season.

“I love the arena setting. It takes a while to get used to but I’ve gotten more comfortable with it,” said Shafer. “Last year I heard it was a great event in the arena and I hope to experience it this year.”

The media also asked Shafer about his dining experiences in Japan.

“Because I’m a diabetic, I have to always know what’s in my food. I have to be very careful about what I eat here. ‘Gohan’ is okay,” said Shafer, referring to the Japanese word for rice. “Gohan and shabu-shabu. I know those are okay because I know what’s in them.”

Shabu-shabu is a Japanese-style meal which includes thinly sliced meat and vegetables cooked in a pot at your table. Luckily for Shafer, there is a shabu-shabu restaurant within the Shinagawa Prince Hotel complex.

Blame Shafer
Malott was asked what was in a plastic bag he brought with him to the press conference. His response: “Pocky sticks…his fault.” Malott pointed to Shafer.

Pocky is a thin, stick-like Japanese cookie usually dipped in chocolate. Shafer was eating the sticks during Thursday’s competition. Malott dug into Shafer’s supply and was hooked.

“Did you know about these before,” one Japanese reporter asked.

“No, one hour ago,” said Malott.

With Malott and Shafer second and third in the standings, respectively, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see more bowlers eating Pocky sticks Friday.

Denny’s PBA Tour
Dydo Japan Cup 2006
Shinagawa Prince Hotel Bowling Center
Tokyo, Japan
Thursday, Sept. 21


(Pos., name/hometown and 20-game pinfall. Top 32 advance to round robin match play. Places 33-72 cash.)

1, Michael Fagan, Greenlawn, N.Y., 4,767.
2, Wes Malott, Dallas, Texas, 4,655.
3, Ryan Shafer , Horseheads, N.Y., 4,604.
4, Brad Angelo, Lockport, N.Y., 4,567.
5, Mike Scroggins, Amarillo, Texas, 4,491.
6, Isao Yamamoto, 4,448.
7, Tommy Jones, Simpsonville, S.C., 4,393.
8, Chris Barnes, Flower Mound, Texas, 4,392.
9, Jason Couch, Clermont, Fla., 4,385.
10, Robert Smith, Captain Cook, Hawaii, 4,356.
11, Masahiro Suto, 4,355.
12, Pete Weber, St. Ann, Mo., 4,341.
13, Chris Loschetter, Avon, Ohio, 4,325.
14, Mike Machuga, Erie, Pa., 4,324.
15, Syuichi Heki, 4,323.
16, Mika Koivuniemi, Hartland, Mich., 4,320.
17, Walter Ray Williams Jr., Ocala, Fla., 4,318.
18, Patrick Healey Jr., Flower Mound, Texas, 4,317.
19, Katsuya Kamida, 4,309.
20, Norm Duke, Clermont, Fla., 4,306.
21, Steve Jaros, Yorkville, Ill., 4,302.
22, Takashi Masuda, 4,299.
23, Jeong Tae Hwa, 4,281.
24, Patrick Allen, Tarrytown, N.Y., 4,279.
25, Shigeyuki Mizuno, 4,268.
26, Toshifumi Kojima, 4,253.
27, Byun Yong Hwan, 4,240.
28, Subaru Nagano, 4,230.
29, No Dong Hyun, 4,219.
30, Takashi Ohyauchi, 4,217.
31, Minoru Sendan, 4,211.
32, Takeo Sakai, 4,200.
33, Koichi Takahashi, 4,198, $1,000.
34, Jung Seo Hak, 4,195, $1,000.
35, Ryota Ichihara, 4,192, $1,000.
36, Shigeo Saito, 4,190, $1,000.
37, Takayuki Kobori, 4,184, $1,000.
38, Doug Kent, Newark, N.Y., 4,182, $1,000.
39, Nobuhito Fujii, 4,170, $1,000.
40, Nobuyuki Chou, 4,157, $1,000.
41, Parker Bohn III, Jackson, N.J., 4,155, $700.
42, Norio Kuroda, 4,152, $700.
43, Yoshiki Osawa, 4,145, $700.
44, Koichiro Tamaki, 4,142, $700.
45, Masaaki Takemoto, 4,136, $700.
46, Keisuke Aita, 4,135, $700.
47, Hisayoshi Nishida, 4,126, $700.
48, Park Jong Soo, 4,117, $700.
49, Yang Tae Seon, 4,116, $700.
50, Naoharu Okabe, 4,115, $700.
51, Yoshinari Matsumura, 4,114, $500.
52, Hideyuki Okano, 4,113, $500.
53, Syoji Kawada, 4,107, $500.
54, Hiroshi Nagatani, 4,106, $500.
55, Masayuki Koyama, 4,103, $500.
56, Toshio Umeda, 4,097, $500.
57, Teruyuki Obara, 4,092, $500.
58, Shinichiro Tamai, 4,078, $500.
59, Yasuhiro Uemura, 4,076, $500.
60, Yukio Yamazaki, 4,069, $500.
61, Ryo Nishimura, 4,060, $500.
62, Yasuyuki Sadamatsu, 4,057, $500.
63, Katsuyuki Kaneko, 4,057, $500.
64, Hiroko Shimizu, 4,056, $500.
65, Takashi Kudou, 4,044, $500.
66, Hidekazu Imai, 4,029, $500.
67, Junichiro Shinada, 3,977, $500.
68, Tsubasa Tuchiya, 3,969, $500.
69, Takahiro Umeki, 3,944, $500.
70, Kazuki Uchida, 3,919, $500.
71, Kazuaki Fujino, 3,913, $500.
72, Katsumasa Watanabe, 3,906, $500.

300 games – None.

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