|Bao Phương Vinh competes in the World Championship Three-Cushion 2023 in Ankara, Turkey. Photo UMB|
HÀ NỘI — Vietnamese cueist Bao Phương Vinh has made a name for himself by winning the World Championship Three-Cushion, marking a significant milestone in Vietnamese history.
Vinh emerged victorious in the final of the World Three – Cushion Championship in Ankara, Turkey on Sunday, defeating his teammate Trần Quyết Chiến and claiming the prestigious world title.
In the semi-finals, Vinh achieved a thrilling victory over "South Korean prodigy" Cho Myung-woo with a score of 50-48. Meanwhile, Chiến triumphed over Turkey's defending champion Tayfun Tasdemir in the other semi-final match.
"Defeating Cho means that I have contributed to making history for Việt Nam," Vinh expressed with immense joy.
"Having an all-Vietnamese final against Chiến was an incredible achievement. The final result is no longer the most important thing for me. Even if I had lost, it would have been fine. Of course, winning makes me even happier."
Born in 1995 in Bình Dương Province, Vinh began his professional career just two years ago. Despite this being his first participation in the world championship, Vinh immediately made his mark by securing a remarkable victory. During the group stage, he defeated Radovan Hajek 40-32 and Nikos Polychronopoulos 40-28, advancing to the knockout round. In subsequent matches, he emerged triumphant against Ahn Ji Hun (50-31), Gwendal Marechal (50-45), Pedro Piedrabuena (50-49), and ultimately defeated Cho and Chiến in the last two encounters.
Reflecting on his journey, the newly crowned world champion highlighted the quarter-finals as his most challenging match. He faced a tough opponent in Uruguayan-born American player Pedro Piedrabuena, who maintained the lead for the majority of the game. Piedrabuena had an opportunity to secure victory when he reached a score of 49-48, but he failed to capitalise on it.
"I consider myself fortunate because my opponent's decisive move lacked power. When the opportunity presented itself, I couldn't afford to miss it," Vinh said.
In the final match, both Vietnamese cueists engaged in a closely contested battle, but Vinh's consistency allowed him to maintain the lead and ultimately secure a victory with a score of 50-34, clinching the championship title.
This historic achievement marked the first time that two Vietnamese cueists reached the semi-finals and finals of the world championship. It also signifies the first instance of a Vietnamese cueist emerging victorious in the world tournament.
Previously, Nguyễn Đức Anh Chiến finished as the runner-up in the 2019 world championship. VNS