Neuhausen takes the hot seat, but Biado comes back to win the RAXX MVP Tour Open 2023

The RAXX MVP Tour Open, held on Long Island, was one of the last nine Mosconi Cup ranking points events before the event itself in December. The event attracted 80 entrants and featured 15 double-hill matches and 20 almost-double-hill matches (9-7) between world champions, established regional competitors, and some of the "up and coming" breed of players. Carlo Biado, a Philippines native, battled twice against Germany's Moritz Nuehausen, who didn't have to travel any further than from his last (presumed) hotel on the island.

Biado's journey to the finish line almost got interrupted early as Ukraine's Vitaliy Patsura started him out with a double-hill challenge. He survived it to start reducing the numbers of his opponents' racks-against, giving up five to Oliver Szolnoki and two to Max Lechner before Shane Wolford moved that needle one rack in the other direction with three racks against him in a winners' side quarterfinal.Things weren't getting any easier as Biado came up against Spain's David Alcaide in one of the winners' side semifinals. Neuhausen started out in another way; small racks-against at the beginning, advancing to stronger and stronger challenges. He got by Kyle Duggan (1), Joey Landi (2), Pat Fleming (3), Emil Gangflot (4) and, in his winners' side quarterfinal, Alex Kazakis (5). This set him up to face one of the top competitors in the world, Russia's Fedor Gorst, in the other winners' side semifinal.

Biado nudged the racks-against needle as far as possible to the 'less' side, allowing Alcaide only a single rack and advancing to the hot seat match. Neuhausen responded to his victory over Gorst by moving Biado's racks-against needle as far to the 'less' side as it could get, defeating him 9-4 to claim the hot seat. Alex Kazakis began his loss-side trip against two world-class opponents and got by both of them, downing Austria's Mario He 9-7 and surviving a double-hill battle against Spain's Jose A. Delgado to pick up another Spaniard, Alcaide. Gorst came over and picked up Norway's Gangflot, who had followed his loss to Neuhausen with four straight, defeating Lukas Fracasso-Verner (double hill), Jeffrey DeLuna (1), Mika "The Iceman" Immonen (5) and Marcel Fortunski (7).

Gangflot gave Gorst the proverbial 'run for his money' in one of the event's 20 almost-double-hill matches, but Gorst prevailed in the end, 9-7, advancing to the quarterfinals. Kazakis defeated his second Spaniard in a row, Alcaide, 9-2, and joined him.

The event also featured a concurrently-run 14:1 straight pool challenge, where 24 players paid $50 for three tries to get their best straight pool run. David Alcaide doubled his weekend income, adding $1,700 to the $1,600 he'd earned placing 5th/6th in the Open event. Tour director Mhet Vergara thanked Holden Chin and his Raxx staff for their hospitality, along with sponsors Queens Bodega, JCNYC Entertainment LLC, Nara Construction Company, PERI, and Vergara Events.


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