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[SPORTS] Efren "Bata" Reyes (The Magician) - Greatest Billiards Player

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  • madchinaman
    Efren Reyes From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Efren_Reyes Efren Bata Reyes, also known as The Magician .Efren Bata Reyes
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 7, 2007
      Efren Reyes
      From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

      Efren "Bata" Reyes, also known as "The Magician".Efren "Bata" Reyes
      (born August 26, 1954) is a very popular Filipino billiards player,
      considered to be one of history's greatest practitioners of pocket
      billiards (pool), especially the games of nine ball and one-pocket.

      He is referred to as "The Magician" for having made some of the most
      spectacular shots seen in tournament play (see nickname discussion,
      infra). Reyes has won many of the most prestigious nine-ball
      tournaments, including multiple wins at the Sands Regency Open, the
      1994 U.S. Open 9-Ball Championship, the 1995 Pro Tour Championship,
      and the 2002 ESPN Challenge of Champions. He is also known for having
      won a two day winner-take-all marathon nine ball event, known as the
      Color of Money I and the Color of Money II, edging out in the finals
      another top nine ball player, Earl Strickland. In 2005, he weathered
      a round robin to challenge the reigning king (Mike Sigel) of the
      Kevin Trudeau sponsored IPT, who was personally picked by Trudeau
      from 'retirement' as the best in the world. Reyes bested him easily.
      He had been inducted in the Billiard Congress of America Hall of Fame
      on July 12, 2003.

      Recently, Reyes and Francisco "Django" Bustamante represented their
      country as Team Philippines and captured the inaugural 2006 World Cup
      of Pool at Newport, South Wales, United Kingdom.

      Reyes was born in Pampanga in 1954 and moved to Manila with his
      family, at the age of 5. In Manila, he worked as a billiards
      attendant at his uncle's billiards hall, where he started learning
      the various cue sports. At a young age, he played for money, and in
      the sixties and seventies, played carambole billiards (also known as
      three cushion billiards). By the time he was 20, he claimed to be the
      best player in the Philippines, which is very likely considering
      successes in the United States and in Europe against some of the best
      9-ball players in the world. At present, he lives in his home town of
      Angeles City, Philippines.

      Straight pool mastery
      Aside from being a notable player in the game of 9-ball, Reyes
      possesses a masterful skill in straight pool (14.1). He is most
      definitely the best 14.1 player in the Philippines. This is due to
      the fact that his performances in this game are most documented among
      players from the Philippines.

      In 1995, Reyes dominated the Maine 14.1 Event besting very well-known
      names such as Jim Rempe and Earl Strickland. His highest run in that
      tournament was 123.

      In 2000, Reyes competed in the US Open 14.1 Championship. Although he
      didn't win and had to settle for third. He conquered notable players
      such Oliver Ortmann, Thomas Engert and Mike Sigel. He even made an
      impressive run of 141 which was more than the one he made five years

      Pool career
      In the eighties, Bata Reyes started playing in the United States,
      mostly as a money player. By the nineties, he was winning major
      tournaments against top players in the U.S. In 1995 he won 6 major
      events, and at the time was considered the best 9-ball player in the
      country. He continued to win major events through the new millennium
      and has proven himself to be one of the best players to ever pick up
      a cue--especially in nine ball. In 2001, he posted unprecedented
      tournament winnings of just over $200,000.

      Then in 2003 he was inducted into the Billiard Congress of America's
      Hall of Fame.

      In December 2005 Reyes won the International Pool Tour's King of the
      Hill 8-Ball Shootout. Reyes won an unprecedented $200,000 for first
      place by beating fellow Hall of Fame member Mike "the Mouth" Sigel in
      straight sets.

      Most recently, Reyes won the 2006 International Pool Tour World Open
      8-Ball Championship over Rodney Morris. At $500,000, this was the
      largest prize money tournament in the history of pocket billiards.

      Film and ambassador
      In 2003, Mr. Reyes was featured in the Filipino movie Pakners with
      the late actor Fernando Poe, Jr..

      Reyes was appointed Philippine Sports Ambassador of the 2005 South
      East Asian Games alongside some of the Philippines' greatest athletes
      (Allan Caidic, Rafael Nepomuceno) to promote the event throughout the

      Nicknames and aliases

      Reyes' nickname "Bata" means "youth" or "kid" in Tagalog. The moniker
      was given to Reyes by friends at his regular billiards hangout to
      distinguish him from an older player with an identical given name.

      The Magician:

      Reyes, along with the other "Filipino invasion" players
      revolutionized the way pool is played by their introduction to the
      sport of pinpoint precision kicking (going into a rail with the cue
      ball and then hitting an object ball). Reyes' ability to "kick safe"
      and to kick balls into intended pockets is legendary. This ability,
      coupled with his superb skill at other aspects of the game, led U.S.
      professionals to give him the appellation "The Magician." Before
      Reyes and his compatriots came over to the U.S., no one there had
      seen anything like their kicking skill set.

      The so-called Filipino Invasion players consist of a group of fine
      Filipino players all of whom came to the U.S. in the 1970s and 1980s
      and quickly took the professional pool world by storm. The first of
      these innovators was Jose "Amang" Parica, followed (not necessarily
      in chronological order) by Mr. Reyes, Francisco "Django" Bustamante
      and, to a lesser extent, Rodolfo "Boy Samson" Luat and Leonardo
      Andam. There are many other fine professional players who have
      followed in their footsteps, including Ramil Gallego, Santos Sambajon
      Jr., Antonio Lining, Marlon "Marvelous" Manalo and Alex Pagulayan,
      current 2005 US Open Champion and 2004 World Pool Championship
      winner, but only the first three original "invaders" are consistently
      considered among the small elite who dominate the very top of pool's
      professional rankings.

      Cesar Morales:

      "[The] first time I came over to the states, I used an alias of Cesar
      Morales. Pool players in the US already knew Efren Reyes as a great
      shooter from the Philippines, but they [hadn't]...seen...[me]...in
      person." ~Efren Reyes (From an interview with AZBilliards, reproduced

      Career titles
      2007 Derby City Classic Master Of The Table
      2007 Derby City Classic One-Pocket Championship
      2006 San Miguel Asian 9-Ball Tour Jakarta Leg
      2006 IPT World 8-Ball Championship
      2006 World Cup of Pool
      2006 San Miguel Asian 9-Ball Tour Vietnam Leg
      2006 Derby City Classic One-Pocket Championship
      2005 IPT King of the Hill
      2005 Derby City Classic Master Of The Table
      2005 Derby City Classic - One-Pocket Championship
      2005 Derby City - 9-Ball Championship
      2005 IPT King of the Hill 8-Ball Championship
      2005 San Miguel Asian 9-Ball Tour Stop
      2005 Japan Open
      2004 Derby City Classic Master of the Table
      2004 Derby City Classic One-Pocket
      2004 World 8-Ball Championship
      2003 Mid-Atlantic 9-Ball Championship
      2003 Las Vegas 9-Ball Open
      2002 Asian 8-Ball Tournament
      2002 Challenge of Champions
      2002 World Pool League Champion
      2001 World Pool League Champion
      2001 IBC Tokyo 9-Ball Championship
      2001 Color of Money II Challenge Match (Reyes vs Earl Strickland)
      2001 Masters 9-Ball Championship
      2000 U.S. Open One-Pocket Championship
      1999 ESPN Ultimate 9-Ball Challenge
      1999 ESPN Ultimate Shootout
      1999 Victor Chandler World Pool Championship
      1999 Derby City Classic - One-Pocket Championship
      1999 Derby City Classic Master of the Table
      1999 Sands Regency Open 29 9-Ball Championship
      1999 World 9-Ball Championship
      1998 World 8-Ball Championship
      1998 Camel South Jersey 10-Ball Open
      1997 PCA Shooters Challenge
      1997 PCA Treasure Island Resort Event
      1996 The Color of Money 9-Ball Champion (Reyes vs Earl Strickland)
      1996 PBT World 8-Ball Championship
      1996 PBT Legends of 9-Ball Championship
      1996 PBT Western Open
      1996 PBT Florida Flare Up III
      1995 Sands Regency Open 21 9-Ball Championship
      1995 PBT World 8 Ball Championship
      1995 Pro Tour Championship 9-Ball
      1995 Maine 14.1 Event
      1994 U.S. Open 9-Ball Championship
      1994 PBT Bicycle Club Invitational
      1992 International 8-Ball Classic
      1992 World 9-Ball Open (Tokyo)
      1990 World Cup (Taipei)
      1988 PBA McDermott Masters 9-Ball
      1986 Sands Regent 9-Ball Championship
      1985 Sands Regent 9-Ball Championship
      1985 Red's 9-Ball Open
      1985 Tar Heel Open
      1985 Willard's Open

      Philippine Legion of Honor
      Philippine Order of Lakandula Champion for Life Award
      Outstanding Filipino Awardee of the Jaycees
      Philippine Sportswriters Association Athlete of the Year
      Billiards Congress of America Hall of Fame
      Elected in 2004 to the One Pocket Hall of Fame
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