Singaporean in title contention
3rd June, Singapore: Singapore's top national bowler and two-time Saudi Open champion, Remy Ong put himself in a strong position and in contention for the 44th Singapore International Open Men's Open Masters title after finishing third in the first round on Friday. Remy Ong was slow off the mark but managed to bowl 196 and 192 in his two opening games. The Singaporean then picked up his pace after some slight adjustments to knock down 234, 248 and 235 to stay with the leading duo of Khalid Al Dubyyan of Kuwait and Shaker Al Hassan of UAE.
Although another sub-200 game of 196 in game 6 put Ong on his back foot, he bounced back with 227 and 225 to end the round with 1783 and an average of 222.88.
"I wasn't matched up to the lanes initially and I was like struggling in the first few games," said the 32-year-old Remy Ong. "I was just trying to grind out 190s in the first few games.
"After that when I moved to the left part of the house, I also started to move my line more to the left and somehow or rather I got better ball reactions and I got more confident.
"Third today is not too bad and I've now put myself closer in contention. This will give me another crack at the Singapore Open title. Hopefully I can make the stepladder finals and maybe this could be my year."
Asian Championship Masters gold medalist, Khalid Al Dubyyan, who had led in the early stages, ended with a poor final game to slip behind leader and Shaker Al Hassan of UAE in second with 1787.
Shaker led the round with 1806 after the Emirati finished strongly with 236, 247, 226 and 217 in the second half while Hong Kong's Wu Siu Hong took fourth spot with 1725.
"The lanes were a little bit different from yesterday and I think it's because of the weather," said the 41-year-old champion of the 2009 Singapore Open. "I altered the surface of my bowlng ball and bowled a squad yesterday and I got good ball reaction.
"Today I had very consistent games and I didn't have low games so I managed to stay with the leaders. We've completed 8 games today and there's another 8 tomorrow. It's important to be in the top 5 which will give me a good chance to make the stepladder.
Singapore's Basil Low, who had eighth consecutive strikes in his final game and was going for a perfect game, completed the top 5 with 1720 followed by Mark Wong of Singapore in sixth with 1710.
The men will resume with the second round tomorrow over an0ther 8 games with pins carried forward from today's round. The top 4 finishers at the end of the two rounds will advance to the stepladder grand finals.
Photos by Terence Yaw in Singapore.