It was Luis Fajardo's turn to shine in the First 10-Ball Tournament held last July 7 at Joe's Bar in Garapan.
The veteran cue artist brushed aside elimination round topnotcher Greg Guerrero's twice-to-beat advantage in the finals to win the weekly competition at the Garapan sports bar and watering hole.
Fajardo started the weekend tourney on the right foot, beating Chester Hamoy, 2-0. Brian Marc Nelvis and Nolan Cultura also succumbed to the eventual champion in the same score.
Guerrero, however, put an end to Fajardo's three straight wins by skunking him in the semifinals to earn the all-important twice-to-beat advantage in the championship round.
Prior to beating Fajardo, Guerrero edged Rene Batestil, 2-1. He also got the better of Fred Robiego and Eugene Borja, curiously with the same score he beat Batestil with.
Fajardo, meanwhile, took the harder route to the finals by repeating against Hamoy.
Hamoy actually ran eight straight balls before unfortunately missing on the 9-ball, giving Fajardo an opportunity to sink his handicap ball and the right to challenge Guerrero in the finals.
In Game 1 of the finals, Fajardo played a defensive safety shot on the 7-ball by snookering the cue ball behind the 9-ball.
Guerrero fouled by not making a legal shot on the 7-ball. With ball in hand, Fajardo manage to run the remaining balls including the 10-ball for the win.
In the do-or-die Game 2, Guerrero missed a tough bank shot on the 8-ball leaving a long but makeable shot for Fajardo.
He went on to pocket the 8-ball, 9-ball, and 10-ball giving him the title of champion that night.
Fajardo took home $100 and Miller Lite products as spoils for his first place finish, while Guerrero and Hamoy settled for the $40 and $20 runner-up purses, respectively, along with Miller Lite products
A total of 16 players took part in the July 7 tourney. Aside from those already mentioned, others who participated were Chester Cuento, Juancho Mendoza, Victor S. Hocog, Taylor Watanabe, Rico Montano, Lito Escaleri, Marlon Bulaun, and Miko.
The double-elimination First 10-Ball Tournament is held every Saturday starting 9pm with sign-ups an hour earlier.
Aside from the Billiards Congress of America rules, a handicap system based on the shooting skill of the player is used. Entrance fee is $10. Joe's Bar is located in front of Fiesta Resort & Spa Saipan.
For more information or to reserve your seat for the tournament, call 233-5367. (Saipan Tribune)