EUROPE 18-23 USA
Osku Palermaa 268-256 Chris Barnes
Dominic Barrett 243-226 Bill O’Neill
Jesper Svensson 235-253 EJ Tackett
Larsen/Palermaa 257–234 Barnes/Troup
Stuart Williams 256-258 Anthony Simonsen
Svensson/Barrett 223–265 O’Neill/Tackett
Osku Palermaa 245–220 Kyle Troup
Dominic Barrett 263-231 Chris Barnes
Jesper Svensson 244-278 EJ Tackett
Team USA retained the BetVictor Weber Cup, beating Europe 23-18 at Ricoh Arena, Coventry, after fending off a late European fightback on what turned into a gripping final day of bowling action live on Sky Sports.
The home side had trialled by nine points at one stage in the afternoon and closed the gap to four by the middle of the evening session. However, defending champions USA were able to stem the tide and EJ Tackett bowled the winning match, beating Jesper Svensson for the second time in the session to also take the MVP title.
“I had the easiest job in the world,” said captain Chris Barnes. “I have four of the top eight guys in the world to bowl with and I think a lot of guys could do ok captaining this group. They are easier to get along with, support each other and know how to do a whole load of things on the lane.
“It has been a strange event. We had a great session one but I don’t ever recall winning this without winning another session at any point. Tonight, Europe basically ran out of games and fortunately EJ pulled us out of a couple of tough matches and picked up for Kyle and I who didn’t have our best day today.”
MVP Tackett said: “This is absolutely amazing, to be MVP. The personal experience last time I was here, I bowled probably one of the worst weeks of my life, and to come here this time, bowl the way that I did, this trophy is for the team. The MVP title never crossed my mind, everything I was doing was for the team.
“This is pretty high up in my career. I have done a lot but this is one of those things that not everybody gets to do, so to be able to come back, get this, hold the Weber Cup trophy, it is pretty fantastic.
Europe had brought momentum with them from the afternoon session, which they closed out with three consecutive wins to trail 13-19.
Osku Palermaa got the hosts of to a perfect start with a 268-256 win over Chris Barnes, and captain Dom Barrett then led by example with a 243-226 over Bill O’Neill. USA were now beginning to look nervous, their lead cut to just four points.
EJ Tackett gave the defending champions some breathing space with a win over Jesper Svensson, stopping the blue tide against the man who had been Europe’s shining light with nine doubles and singles wins so far.
That meant USA needed just three points more, but Europe closed the gap again in the subsequent doubles match; Palermaa and Thomas Larsen beating Barnes and Kyle Troup.
Simonsen then beat Williams at the death; the Englishman unfortunate to leave one pin standing, allowing his opponent to strike for a point that took USA with two of the title.
Tackett and O’Neill then beat Svensson and Barrett at doubles; the European tide had well and truly been stemmed and USA needed just one more point to retrain the BetVictor Weber Cup.
Troup was next up for America and he knew that not only would a point see his nation defend their title, but it would also mean he would pip his team-mates to the MVP title. However, Palermaa had other ideas and kept Europe alive with a 245-220 win.
Captain Barrett then saw off his counterpart Barnes 263-231, but that would prove to be Europe’s final point, as Tackett then beat Svensson 244-278 to claim the MVP crown, and most importantly the 2020 BetVictor Weber Cup for Team USA.
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