Jeffrey de Luna and Ricky Yang fashioned identical 9-7 victories over their respective semifinal opponents Sunday afternoon, to forge a meeting for top honors in the inaugural Philippine Open Pool Championship at SM Megamall, Mandaluyong City, Metro Manila.
Ricky Yang beat Lu Hui Chan of Chinese Taipei in the first semifinal. Both players were at the top of their game, but the Indonesian proved just a little bit steadier and more precise in his potting and position play.
Lu led in the early going, but Yang quickly caught up and then led 3-2 and 5-3. From there it was always Yang just a bit ahead by a rack or two. Whenever the Taiwanese closed in, the Indonesian would reply by taking the next rack.
In the other semifinal, Jeffrey de Luna prevailed over fellow Filipino Demosthenes Pulpul. The match was tight all the way, with neither player getting any advantage.
With the count knotted at 7-7, Pulpul had a chance to go to the hill first as he faced a makeable runout of the table in the 15th rack. But a muffed stun shot on the 7-ball quickly reversed the situation. De Luna wound up on the hill instead.
In the 16th rack, De Luna got a good break and he ran out to take the match and book a place in the finals.
The finals between Yang and De Luna will be played after a brief break.