Bernard “Neil” Dowdy walked away with the top prize of $500 and a case of Coronita (mini Corona beer) in the Kennedy’s Club Annual Pool Tournament held at Kennedy’s Classic on Thursday.
The top-ranked player, despite a scare in the second round, made light work of Francis Estabez Vasquez Bridge to win three games to one in the finals.
For his effort Vasquez Bridge took home $250 and a case of beer as well.
In the best of five finals, Vasquez Bridge took the first game to shock the small crowd but Dowdy took three in a row to put any doubt of an upset to rest.
“I was never worried of losing this match,” the champion said after the tournament.
“I was always confident not withstanding he took the opening game.”
Despite his confidence, Dowdy got a huge scare in his second round match against William Jarvis who had “two bites of the cherry” but was unable to convert.
Jarvis lost the first of the best of three matches before rebounding to beat Dowdy easily in the second game.
With Dowdy “on the ropes” and Jarvis in full flight in the decider, hopes of victory faded as Jarvis twice missed to pocket the 8-ball.
The champion capitalised on his failures to book a spot in the semis.
Another top-rated player, Vff Jay of the Philippines, was not that fortunate as he was knocked out in the third round, much to the disbelief of the many onlookers.
Kwesi “RC” Dash shocked the crowd with a 2-1 victory over the much talked about Vff Jay, putting to rest the enthusiasm of a finals match between Dowdy and the Philippine.
In spite of his heroics dispatching Vff Jay, Dash lost 0-2 to Dowdy in the semis before falling to Kunge Pooran 1-2 in the third place game.
Twenty-eight players from across the country piled into Kennedy’s Classic on lower Lionel Hurst Street, and paid the minimal $20 fee to register in hopes of not just capturing the prize monies, but to also garner bragging rights.
Manager of Kennedy’s Classic Kevin Francis was encouraged by the turnout and the enthusiasm that the players portrayed.
“Pool has always been a part of Kennedy’s Classic and it’s always pleasing to see so many people come in and take part in the sport,” Francis said. “The tournament is good but apart from that most of these guys pass through here on a daily basis to compete against each other.
“We, at Kennedy’s, continue to urge more young people to play pool, which as a matter of fact can become a career.”
In February, Kennedy’s will host its annual Valentine’s tournament where the teams will be mixed with the women coming out to show their skills.