Vietnamese pool player makes history with world title in Scotland

By Xuan Binh   May 5, 2024 | 07:41 pm PT
Duong Quoc Hoang beat Oscar Dominguez 10-8 in the Scottish Open final to become the first Vietnamese player to win world pool tournament.

The final took place on Monday morning (Hanoi time) dramatically, when Dominguez continuously took the led. However, like what Hoang had done many times in the tournament, he overturned the score and ended the match with a 10-8 victory.

The key in the final game was the number 3 ball, when two players made many errors on that. From a poor shot by Hoang, the number 3 ball rolled to a difficult position. In the next shot, Dominguez failed to score and could only hit the number 3 ball, creating an easy position to help Hoang finish the match.

Duong Quoc Hoang with the Scottish Open title in Glasgow, Scotland on May 5, 2024. Photo by Matchroom

Duong Quoc Hoang with the Scottish Open trophy in Glasgow, Scotland, on May 5, 2024. Photo by Matchroom

After the victory, the 37-year-old player raised his cue high with both hands in celebration, then went to shake his opponent's hand. Afterward, he posted on social media: "I made it."

The Scottish Open took place from May 1 to May 5 in Glasgow with 104 participants, including the 10 top players in the world. The tournament belongs to the World Nineball Tour (WNT) series.

Hoang only ranked 44th in the world, so very few people thought he would achieve something, especially when he lost his first match 7-10 against Ko Ping-han. But after that, he won 10 matches in a row against Jake-Dylan Newlove, Benji Buckley, Elliott Sanderson, Mustafar Alnar, Carlo Biado, Francisco Sanchez Ruiz, Tyler Styer, Eklent Kaci, Ko Pin-Yi and Dominguez. Hoang is the first pool player in Vietnamese history to win such a world-scale tournament.

In the four final matches of the knockout phase, Hoang overturned the score to win them. He defeated Styer 10-7, despite being led 1-6 at times, in the round of 16. In the quarterfinals, he was one point behind, then beat Kaci 10-5.

The semifinals were the most difficult one, when Hoang and Ko Pin-yi created an intense chase on the scoreboard, to the point that the score was 9-9 at one point. According to the rules, a player who makes three mistakes in a game will lose by default. Hoang has made two mistakes in the last round while Ko tried to get him to make another error to end the match.

However, Hoang did not make a single mistake and continuously put the balls in the hole. When ball number 7 was in a difficult position, he did not try to finish it but kept it in a difficult position. After Ko made a mistake, Hoang was given the ball and easily put the remaining three balls in.

Hoang, 37, is 44th in the world, according to the WNT rankings, with total prize money from international tournaments in the past 12 months of $24,467. The Scottish Open championship earned him an additional $12,550 and he is expected to enter the world's top 40.

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