A junior from Krakow won the Memorial.
Szymon Kural of TCF HUB Krakow won the international Dynamic Billard Best of the East – Adrian Tabacar Memorial tournament in Oradea. In the final, the junior from Poland defeated the experienced Melkonyan Babken from Romania 7:6, and earlier 7:1 the two-time Dynamic Best ranking winner Ioan Ladanyi from Romania. Koles Balas from Slovakia and Ioan Ladanyi, who represented for many years the Adrian Tabacaru club, won the bronze medals. The event featured 88 competitors from Bulgaria, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, and Romania. The tournament was also a memorial for Adrian Tabacaru, a Romanian billiard activist who passed away last year. Adrian’s wife Maria attended the event. As many as five executives of the East European Billiard Council came to Oradea: President Marcin Krzeminski (POL), Vice Presidents Samuel Koniar (SVK), Jaroslav Horenovsky (CZ), Director Piotr Kędzior (POL), and Secretary of the International Billiard Academy EEBC Georgi Bozhkov (BUL). During the opening ceremony, a presentation commemorated the late Adrian Tabacaru, President Krzeminski and Vice President Samuel Koniar presented Maria Tabacaru with the „Friend of EEBC” badge. Adrian Tabacaru also received the award posthumously. The president of the EEBC spoke of working with the deceased, and his wife Maria received flowers and gifts. After taking a commemorative photo, the judges went to work: Alexandru Balas (ROM) and Piotr Kędzior (POL).
The group games were conducted on Saturday. The players played 132 matches in 22 groups. Unexpectedly, Filip Lebduska (CZ), Michał Turkowski (POL), Raul Maican (ROM), and Erik Tenk (SVK) ended their participation in the tournament at this stage.
In the knockout stage at the 17th rank came the end for such accomplished pool players as Karol Skowerski, Milcho Makendjiev (BUL), Petr Urban (CZ), Cristian Surdea, and Ciprian Gandać (ROM).
Jaroslav Polach (SVK), David Zalman (CZ), Ladislav Hajsman (CZE), Kamil Spicha (POL), Calvin Washburn (CZ), Velerin Cattani (ROM), Michal Hajduch (SVK) and Alexandru Cotescu (ROM) were also unable to open the door to the top eight.
In the quarterfinals, there were 3 Poles, 3 Romanians, a Hungarian, and a Slovak. Mariusz Skoneczny (PL), Babken Melkonyan and Ioan Ladanyi (ROM) were believed to have the greatest chances of victory. Meanwhile, the 18-year-old world junior vice-champion Szymon Kural won over Skoneczny by 7:5. Melkonyan finished the match 7:3 against Julian Costea (ROM), while Ladanyi defeated Richard Csabalik (HUN) 7:3. In the last match of this phase Dominik Zając (POL) lost 5:7 to Balazsovi Koles (SVK).
In the semifinals the quiet Babken 7:3 outscored Balazs, and Szymon won Ioan to one.
In the final, Szymon took the lead. Then Babken responded and it looked like he would win the gold medal. However, one mistake and then putting the white ball in the pocket after a sensational jump brought Kural to a 6:6 draw. Szymon finished the last game without any mistakes.
„I felt like Adrian Tabacaru was with us and wrote the script for the competition. In the international Dynamic Billard Best of the East tournament, which was his memorial, the winner was a junior from Poland, Szymon Kural. I remember many of my conversations with Adrian regarding youth sports and how he cared about juniors. Now a junior won for the first time in the history of the tournament,” said president Marcin Krzeminski.
Szymon Kural received the cup, the medal, 1000 euros, and a Cuetec Cynergy cue worth about 700 euros.
The memorial created a unique atmosphere. There were far more expressions of affection and collegial gestures than at other tournaments. The event was warmly supported by Lavrente Jozsef Czirjak, who took care of special T-shirts with the photo of Adrian and Maria Tabacaru, gifts, and dinner meetings. EEBC covered the cost of lodging for guests and staff, judges, and some travel to the tournament. The Black & White Club provided the tables. As strategic sponsors Dynamic Billard (GER), Ivan Simonis S.A. (BEL), Aramith (BEL), Cuetec (USA), and Kamui (JAP) helped to make this happen.