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ABF Tour News - TOC 2007
Battle for Glory begins in January

4th January, Hong Kong: The ABF Tour 2007 Grand Finals - the Tournament of Champions, arrives in Jakarta for the fourth time at Jaya Ancol Bowling Centre in January 10 - 13 where the top 16 men and top 16 women bowlers based on their 2007 Tour rankings will be vying for glory.

Bowlers will compete in a round-robin first round over the first two days of the competition at the end of which, the top 8 will advance to the exciting single-game elimination knockout stage LIVE on Indonesia Metro TV.

This year's Tournament of Champions will see top Asian bowlers from 10 countries competing for the coveted title from men representing nine countries whilst the women come from seven countries. Host Indonesia has 5 slots followed by Hong Kong, Philippines and Thailand occupying 4 slots each, Korea 3 slots, Malaysia and UAE 2 slots each while Australia, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia has 1 slot each.

Missing this year's grand finals is former two-time champion, Wendy Chai of Malaysia, who won the inaugural TOC finals in 2005 and last year's

TOC firm favourite, Jason Belmonte of Australia

crown. Also missing is two-time Indonesia leg champion and reigning TOC champion, Alex Liew. Also missing is 2006 champion, Daniel Lim, all from Malaysia.

The battle will not be easy as some of the top bowlers have impressive strings of titles going into the finals. Current Asian Ranked No. 1 is the prolific, Jason Belmonte of Australia, who has won four international titles including the World Tenpin Masters and runner-up spots in the Kuwait leg and the recent AMF World Cup.

Belmonte, who was last year's runner-up, won the 2006 International Junior All Stars, the inaugural Canon Cup, the World Tenpin Masters title and this year's Indonesia Open. The two-handed Aussie will enter the TOC as a firm favourite.

Ryan Lalisang, who is Indonesia's strongest contender and TOC top qualifier with 256 points, was the most outstanding bowler in the Asian Bowling Tour having bagged the Kuwait and the Hong Kong legs as well as the Kuwait International Open title this year.

The Asian champion and Asian Ranked No. 2, who also has a string of seconds including the Philippines leg and a silver medal in the Masters event of the most recent SEA Games in Bangkok, will definitely give the Australian a hard fight.

Strongest challenger, Ryan Lalisang of Indonesia

Another likely contender will be Hong Kong's Wu Siu Hong who goes into the finals as the third highest qualifier with 130 points. Wu won the first TOC title in 2005 but was knocked out last year in the semifinals. Winning the Hong Kong Open twice in a row will put the 22-year-old in a strong position to challenge for the men's title.

In the women's field and heading the favourite's list will undoubtedly be the current Asian Ranked No. 1 and TOC top qualifier with 183 points, Kim Eun Jung of Korea. Having captured the final leg in Hong Kong and has made two quarterfinals and a semifinal in three other legs, the Korean looks the one to beat.

Kim has been the most consistent Asian women this year with a runner-up spot in last year's TOC, capturing the Sinai Open crown and countless top 10 finishers in most of the Asian ranking tournaments.

Host Indonesia will have four contenders to challenge for the women's crown. Leading the pack will be Putty Armein despite not having won a single title this year. Armein was denied her first title after finishing second to the experienced Alex Liew in Selangor Super Classic just two weeks ago in Malaysia.

Asian Ranked No. 1, Kim Eun Jung of Korea

The Asian champion, who is second highest TOC qualifer with 122 points and the most outstanding performer in the 2006 tour, will be the local crowd's favourite going into the finals. SEA Games singles gold medalist, Tannya Roumimper will also be in the fray for a crack at the women's crown.

Two-time Indonesia leg champion and ex-international, Lai Kin Ngoh of Malaysia will be relishing in her favourite ground and would also be in the running for the title especially with no current Malaysian elite women bowlers in the field.

The ABF Tour comprises six legs and a Grand finals, the Tournament of Champions. Each leg saw the top 16 men and top 16 women bowlers from the preceding International Open Masters Event (Open Grade)

Putty Armein leading Indonesia's women challenge

compete in a one-game match play knockout competition for the individual men's and women's titles and earning ranking points for the TOC.

The ABF Tour - TOC will be telecast LIVE on Indonesia Metro TV and the highlights of the finals will be televised later on local television channels of the seven countries where the tour was held. For further information and details, please contact ABF Tour Committee at Tel: +852 2893 6039, Fax: +852 2893 6290; Email: hktbc@netvigator.com.

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