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Sports

Dutch, Polish advance; Orcollo-Corteza out

- Joey Villar, Nelson Beltran - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines – Seventh seed The Netherlands and No. 10 Poland stormed from behind to beat Croatia and Australia, respectively, while No. 11 Japan stamped its class against Russia to book spots in the second round of the $250,000 PartyPoker.net World Cup of Pool 2012 at the Robinsons Mall Ermita Midtown Activity Center yesterday.

Dutch Nick van den Berg and Huidji See made an amazing comeback from 4-7 down and beat the stunned pair of Carlo Dalmatin and Philipp Stojanovic, 8-7, in a hill-hill battle while Polish Karol Skoweski and Wojciech Szewcyk fought back from 2-5 count and topped Dave Reljic and Ian Barber, 8-6.

Earlier, Japanese Naoyuki Oi and Satoshi Kawabata got to a hot 4-0 start and held off Konstantin Stepanov and Vitaly Pavlukhin, 8-6.

The Dutch, the Polish and the Japanese brought back order in the competition after the second-seeded Philippine pair of Dennis Orcollo and Lee Van Corteza suffered a bitter 7-8 defeat to the unranked Swiss duo of Dimitri Jungo and Ronni Regli in Day Two of first-round action late Wednesday night.

Left to carry the flag for the Filipinos, the tandem of Efren “Bata” Reyes and Francisco “Django” Bustamante was to play the Canadian team for a place in the quarterfinals late last night.

“I can’t express how much joy there is right now in Team Holland. Being down 4-7 and coming back with the right shots, I haven’t been that nervous in a while. But hey, that’s what you play for – excitement and finish,” said Van den Berg in their Houdini act versus the Croats.

The Croats had a chance to salvage the match at hill-hill but Stojanovic made a giant blunder, missing on 4-ball with the table wide open.

“We were under a lot of pressure at the end and yes, I dogged that 4 ball,” rued Stojanovic.

“I think they had way more rolls than us. From 7-4, they had a lot more rolls but it happens. We tried to enjoy. We wanted to win. We put a lot of pressure on them. But pool is like a coin flip. Unfortunately, we didn’t win,” Stojanovic added.

Croatia appeared headed for an upset when it won the first three racks then battled Holland tit for tat to go to the hill at 7-4.

But then the Dutch duo gained some relief on an illegal Croat break on the 12th rack.

BERG AND HUIDJI SEE

CARLO DALMATIN AND PHILIPP STOJANOVIC

CROATIA AND AUSTRALIA

DAVE RELJIC AND IAN BARBER

DAY TWO

DENNIS ORCOLLO AND LEE VAN CORTEZA

DIMITRI JUNGO AND RONNI REGLI

DUTCH NICK

JAPANESE NAOYUKI OI AND SATOSHI KAWABATA

KONSTANTIN STEPANOV AND VITALY PAVLUKHIN

STOJANOVIC

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