With two events happening this week, there’s a lot on the line as the PBA Tour heads to Shawnee, Oklahoma, where three PBA players will win tour titles.
The PBA Oklahoma Open will award the first title, while two players will win titles in the Mark Roth-Marshall Holman PBA Doubles Championship.
Here are a few key points to get you ready for this week’s events:
The format and lane condition
This week is unique on the PBA Tour because there will be the singles event, the PBA Oklahoma Open, and the doubles event, the PBA Doubles Championship, going on at the same time.
The players will bowl alongside their doubles partners during qualifying and their scores will count for both events during the first two rounds of qualifying. Each round of qualifying is seven games.
After 14 games, the top 24 players in the PBA Oklahoma Open advance for seven more games of cashers round qualifying to narrow the field to 16 for match play. In the doubles event after 14 games, the top 12 teams advance into Baker match play.
The singles event will feature 16 games of round robin match play, while the doubles event will have 12 games of round robin match play. For obvious reasons, these rounds do not happen simultaneously. The top five in each event will advance to the stepladder finals.
As for the lane condition, this week the players will face the 42-foot Mark Roth pattern.
How to watch
All rounds of qualifying and match play will be broadcast live on FloBowling starting Tuesday at 10 a.m. Central and continuing through Saturday, wrapping up about Noon.
FloBowling subscribers will be able to watch the FloZone channel with commentary or select a specific pair to watch their favorite players.
The stepladder finals of the PBA Oklahoma Open will be broadcast Sunday live on FS1 at 11 a.m. Eastern for audiences in the United States. International viewers can watch live on FloBowling. An archive of the show will be available on FloBowling seven days after it airs live.
The PBA Doubles Championship will be taped Sunday but won’t air until Jan. 20 at 1 p.m. Eastern on FS1. It will also be streamed for international viewers on FloBowling at that time.
What big names are competing?
All the regular stars are back again this week, including PBA Hall of Fame Classic winner Bill O’Neill and the rest of the players who made that stepladder finals.
Also making his way back onto the national stage will be Pete Weber, who sat out last week’s event at the International Training and Research Center in Arlington, Texas.
However, the big story this week is not who is bowling in the singles event, it’s who is pairing up in the doubles event, and boy are there some interesting pairings.
As expected, defending champions Jason Belmonte and O’Neill are back to defend their title. They defeated brothers Darren and Michael Tang in the championship match last year, 205-185, in a Baker match. The Tang brothers are back again this year as well.
Dom Barrett and Osku Palermaa is an interesting team, and if the left is good this week, look for Ryan Ciminelli and Rhino Page to make some noise.
Another fascinating pairing? How about two-handers from both sides with Jesper Svensson and Kyle Troup teaming up.
There are far too many good doubles teams to mention, so you’ll have to be on the lookout for who to watch once the event gets started.
What the schedule looks like
Here’s the schedule for this week’s event, all times listed are Central:
Tuesday, Jan. 8
10 a.m. – Qualifying Round 1, Squad A (seven games)
5 p.m. – Qualifying Round 1, Squad B (seven games)
Wednesday, Jan. 9
10 a.m. – Qualifying Round 2, Squad B (seven games)
5 p.m. – Qualifying Round 2, Squad A (seven games)
Thursday, Jan. 10
10 a.m. – Cashers Round (Top 24, seven games)
5 p.m. – Round Robin Match Play Round 1 (Top 16, eight games)
Friday, Jan. 11
11 a.m. – Round Robin Match Play Round 2 (eight games)
6 p.m. – Baker Doubles Match Play Round 1 (Top 12, six games)
Saturday, Jan. 12
10 a.m. – Baker Doubles Match Play Round 2 (six games)
Sunday, Jan. 13
10 a.m. – PBA Oklahoma Open Stepladder Finals* (Top five)
Sunday, Jan. 20
Noon – Mark Roth-Marshall Holman PBA Doubles Championship Stepladder Finals* (Top five)
* - FloBowling broadcast only for audiences outside the United States. The archive of the finals will be available for all audiences seven days after it airs live.