International Challenge of Champions
The International Challenge of Champions is an annual nine-ball pool tournament held at the Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, Connecticut. It has always been broadcast on ESPN and is sanctioned by the World Pool-Billiard Association.
As of 2009, four invited notable players compete in this single-elimination event. Different from other pool tournaments, this is a winner-take-all event. The winner earns the entire purse ($25K) and the title of "Champion of Champions."
Each match is compose of two sets; each of them is race to 5 and in alternate break. Players lag to determine who shall break in the first set. The player who loses that set will break in the second.
A 30-second shot clock rule is used. This means a player must make a shot within 30 seconds lest the other player will receive ball-in-hand. Each player, however, can call for an extension but only once per rack.
Unlike other 9-ball tournaments, a player must call the 9-ball before pocketing it. Failing to call the shot or the 9-ball going in another pocket other than the one called will result the 9-ball being respotted and the player loses his turn at the table. Also, a player can't win a rack by pocketing the 9-ball in the break.
To win a match, a player has to win both sets. If the sets are split (one player winning the first but other player winning the next), players again lag to break at the one rack decider.
Chao Fong-pang holds the most wins (3) in the tournament.
|2015||Shane Van Boening|
- The Int'l Challenge of Champions, as of 2009, has been the only winner-take-all tournament still running. A similar tournament includes the Texas Hold'em Billiards Championship but has been changed and was only short-lived.
- The tournament is also known as the being the only one to have used the Elephant Beautiful Balls, a brand of billiard balls with a patented swirly colored design. These were last applied in the 2002 edition of the event. From there, standard balls from Aramith became the norm ever since.
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