First win for Singapore, second for Malaysia

8th January, Jakarta: Jennifer Tan gave Singapore its first win after capturing the ABF Tour Tournament of Champions women's title as she defeated Lai Kin Ngoh, 174-149 while Daniel Lim brought home the men's crown for Malaysia. The final match between top-seed, Jennifer Tan and Lai Kin Ngoh was a lowly affair as bot the contenders struggled in the very difficult conditions. The champion had two open frames in the third and eight frames while Lai started with a split in the first and seventh frames and ending disasterously with two more in the ninth and tenth frames.

Jennifer Tan eventually emerged as the champion defeating her opponent, 174-149 to win US$10,000 top prize while Lai failed to emulate her teammate, Wendy Chai, who won the coveted title last year. Lai took home US$4,000 for her efforts.

"I'm really happy to win the TOC title as I've finally beaten myself," said Jennifer with tears in her eyes after the finals. "I can now tell myself I can do it again the next time now that I've finally conquered this problem.   The champion had earlier edged Wang Yu Ling of Chinese Taipei, 211-201 to continue her relentless march and determination toward the title in the first of the women's semifinals while the runner-up had outclassed last year's champion, Wendy Chai, 220-149 in the second match. Daniel, 29 from Port Klang in Malaysia, immediately went on a strikefest as he strung together five strikes in a row to take a commanding lead at the halfway mark. His opponent, Surasak had to contend with two splits in the second and fourth frames to trail by 56 pins.

Despite coming back strongly with turkey from frame five, the gap was just too much for Surasak to do anything. Daniel then finished off in style with a turkey himself before marking the final frame for a high game of 256 to Surasak's 191.

"I knew I only needed to spare frame 9 to win, and instead told myself to concentrate as another important shot. I'm glad I've made it. It's the biggest win in my whole bowling career," said Daniel. "My coach Chris and I had a discussion after the warm up and we both agreed at the end what I should do."   The champion had earlier dashed Indonesia's hopes of a home victory when he edged Ryan Lalisang, 197-170 in the men's second semifinal match while the runner-up had an easy victory over TOC debutant, Aaron Kong, 178-153 in the first match.

The Malaysian champion won the top prize of US$20,000 and the prestigious title to kick start his 2006 campaign and the runner-up settled for US$6,000, not too bad considering he only made the finals after Ahmed Shaheen of Qatar pulled out.

The loosing semifinalists, Ryan Lalisang and Aaron Kong settled for US$2,500 each and Wang Yu Ling and Wendy Chai took home US2,000 a peice. The prize money were sponsored by Jaya Ancol Bowling Center.

The finals today saw yet another stella year for Asian Bowling Federation in which eight legs were held which began in February in Doha, Qatar and ending with the last leg in October in Singapore. The top 16 men and top 16 women made the TOC via ranking points earned from all the legs contested.

Detailed scores: Women's Final Match | Men's Final Match. Photos courtesy of Jaya Ancol Bowl.