Bata selects Bustamante; Immonen picks Appleton
EUROPE-USA skipper Mika “The Iceman” Immonen chose World 9-Ball and 10-Ball Champion and twice US Open Champion Darren “Dynamite” Appleton of England for the powerhouse Team West in what promises to be an epic match-up in the inaugural staging of the Kings Cup opening on Nov. 19 at the plush Resorts World Manila Casino and Hotel.
As for Team Asia, Efren “Bata” Reyes, who was named captain of the team, earlier selected longtime friend and bosom buddy Francisco “Django” Bustamante.
Appleton, who is the World No. 2, said the Kings Cup is something that has been long awaited for and he is ready to rumble.
“It’s an honor to be chosen to play in the first-ever Kings Cup and I look forward to it. East versus West. It’s been a long time coming,” Appleton said.
European and American champions will go up against Asia’s champions from Nov. 19 to 21 in what surely will become the most epic rivalry in cue sports.
“The pool world is about to get rocked in a war that fans have been dreaming about for years,” said Dragon Promotions executive producer Charlie Williams, himself a mean pool player.
Immonen welcomed Appleton, saying: “Darren is obviously an amazing player and amazing team player. We get along really great and have a tremendous amount of mutual respect for one another.”
“Darren has had the most international wins in majors than any professional player in the past 9 years. And with his titles in multiple disciplines in the World 14.1, One Pocket, and Chinese 8-Ball, he stands above even other European and Americans. So he was an obvious choice for the team,” Williams said.
The format of the Kings Cup will follow in the footsteps of the successful Queens Cup. Teams will play in versatile styles including singles, doubles, triples, and quadruples each of the three days of the men’s competition.