Nidoy, Bulalayao OFBC Bowler of the Year Finals champs


By Earl Wright

— In the end, only the best and the well-equipped have their way as Class A bowler Joel Nidoy romped off with the men’s title in the Bowler of the Year Finals to bring down the curtain on a successful 2017 season for the OFBC (Overseas Filipino Bowlers Club).

Nidoy, already disadvantaged even before the first ball was rolled due to his low handicap of 6 per game, outscored everyone including the seeded finalist, Sergio Modar, during the three-game series with handicap finals to put the exclamation mark to a year-long series sponsored by Tahweel Integrated.

Also, the victory capped a late run in a big year for Nidoy in which he won an elusive Bowler of the Week, Bowler of the Month (December) and league title (OFBC Friday Afternoon Season7) with RTJ Baguio Transient House, which he captained.

Nidoy enjoyed a fast start in the decisive battle for the championship, carding a first game 227 en route to a winning total of 592 that also contained 162 and 185 in the last two games.

It was not even close as Class D Modar, with a 24 handicap to work on to his advantage, finished on 567 (138, 185 and 172) to settle for the first runner-up.

Ryan Latigo, another relatively beginning bowler like Modar, was second runner-up on 531, while Ed Cordova and Rico Bulalayao wound up third runner-up and fourth runner-up on 520 and 512, respectively.

Under the tournament format the top four after the five games with handicap semifinals in both divisions advance to the finals. The semifinal qualifiers are the wild card phase winners, loyalty awardees (bowlers who completed 11 monthly participation) and monthly champions with at least seven entries.

Nidoy was the second semifinalist next to Latigo on 941 and 957 with Bulalayao 916 and Ed Cordova 898 completing the top four.

On the eve of the big event, Nidoy said his mindset was “enjoy the game, forget about handicap and just give my best whatever the result.”

Apparently it paid off, as Nidoy established control after the first two games in both the semis and finals.

Nidoy was fresh again, having conserved energy while playing relaxed in the third, fourth and fifth games of the semis.

His 227 start in the finals, aided by a turkey in the first three frames and another three-bagger from the seventh, was key as it cushioned a splits-ridden second game. Nidoy then followed his gameplan to the letter — avoid splits — in the third game to get the win.

On the ladies side, Malou Nidoy was the seeded finalist by virtue of becoming Bowler of the Month champion three times and entering the monthly series at least seven times.

Malou narrowly missed a husband-and-wife double, denied of this rare chance by Darlene Bulalayao who beat her by six pins.

Bulalayao shot 549 to Malou’s 543 to become the ladies Bowler of the Year champion.

Carol Rio was the second runner-up on 541 followed by Johara Palot third runner-up on 533 and Shiela Monserate fourth runner-up on 485.

The champions in both divisions received smartphone from Tahweel Integrated in addition to cash prize and pin trophy. The rest of the podium winners took home cash prizes and smartphones, while the sixth to eighth placers received cash.