MANILA, Philippines — There was no great comeback this time as the Philippines’ Jeff de Luna and Roberto Gomez suffered a 4-9 loss to Estonia’s Denis Grabe and Mark Magi to bow out of the World Cup of Pool in England.
De Luna and Gomez’ ability to climb out of a big hole was tested anew when they faced a 1-6 deficit in the quarterfinal duel with the Estonians at the Stadium MK in Milton Keynes.
But unlike in Wednesday’s Round 2 where they wiped out a 0-5 deficit to beat Americans Skyler Woodward and Billy Thorpe, 7-5, the Filipino aces couldn’t pull it off this time.
The Filipino pair, who bid to bring home the country’s fourth crown, settled for $9,000 for their quarterfinal finish in the $250,000 single elimination tournament.
“We gave it our all but it wasn’t meant to be. We didn’t really get the breaks with the balls (against Estonia),” said De Luna.
Estonia took the first two racks then maintained a 3-1 lead through four sets. The Philippines got the chance to pull one back when De Luna shot a highlight reel jump to bank the 1-ball but Gomez missed the four, allowing Grabe and Magi to capitalize and make it 4-1 instead. The Estonians extended their upperhand to 6-1.
The Pinoy aces went within 7-4 later on but miscues in the next rack allowed the Estonians to reach the hill and close it out in the 13th.
Estonia set up a semis showdown with Germany’s Joshua Filler and Christoph Reintjes, who turned back Denmark’s Mickey Krause and Bahram Lotfy, 9-5.
De Luna and Gomez will have their shot at redemption when they compete individually in the World Pool Masters on May 22-25 in Gibraltar, Spain.