When things fall apart, it would cost $ 60,000 and a world pool title — just like in the case of Roberto Gomez of the Philippines.
Dubbed as Superman, Gomez stumbled on the late stage of his match as he fell down to Daryl Peach of England, 17-15 at the final of 2007 Philippines World Pool Championships this night at Araneta Coliseum.
Gomez was easily breezing to a win, leading 15-12, but Peach respond and close the gap to one, 15-14.
Then the 31st rack was nothing but drama and suspense. Peach missed the two ball. Gomez took over the table. Taking it lightly, he missed an easy shot at the five ball.
As seen on the television, Gomez was in tears. He was never expecting to come back on the table for the rack.
Peach, once again, misjudged the cue ball for a shot at the eight. Gomez was surprised. He was unprepared emotionally to take the shot. He did not take his time on banking the eight ball. Without taking any practice shot, he rushed in to swoosh in the eight ball, but he did not make it again. Eventually, Peach made the nine ball and took the next two racks to bag the title and $ 100,000.
At that situation, Gomez showed some unstableness as a newbie in the tournament. While Peach, a veteran in the sport, showed his steady game.
Gomez lost in the mind game. And mind really matters in this sport.
Maybe, the great pressure by his fellowmen led to his unstableness. No one in that hall was expecting that Gomez, who just made it to the WPC by qualifiers, to make it to the final. I don’t even think that Gomez himself was expecting to make it to the final and win the title. They were expecting the big names- Efren “Bata” Reyes, Francisco “Django” Bustamante, and defending champion Ronato Alcano.
Unfortunately, two of those big time cue artists, Alcano and Bustamante, were knocked off by Peach in earlier rounds.
Even Peach was a never-heard name in the pool scene until he made one of the greatest upsets in the tournament, manhandling 2006 champion Ronnie Alcano in the last 64. Then, he continued his flawless performance in the suceeding rounds, until he produced another upset in a thrilling match against the favorite Bustamante in the quarterfinals.
With the win of Peach, Europe is slowly gaining the repetition as a powerhouse in pool. Three of the four semi-finalists are from Europe- Peach (England), Karl Boyes (England), and Vilmos Foldes (Hungary).
Gomez, though was not able to win the tile in his home soil, had nothing to lose. With a runner-up finish at the most prestigious event in pool, it means a lot. Gomez needs more time, tournaments and opponents in order to mature. He is young, he needs to learn more.
Certainly, he will be greater in the coming years. The future is brighter than ever for him. He will make it. He can win the title. Expect Gomez to play better next year at WPC. Expect him to play mind games tactfully.
You have nothing to lose, Roberto Gomez. Filipinos are proud of you!